Cole Madey at Sahalee CC (PNGA photo)
SAMMAMISH, WA (July 3, 2018) - For the third straight round, UCLA rising junior Cole Madey (West Linn, OR) finds himself on top of the leaderboard at the 24th Sahalee Players Championship, but his lead that was once four shots is down to one going into the final round at Sahalee Country Club.
Madey, the reigning Oregon Amateur champion and Pacific Coast Golf Association Player of the Year, put up a pair of 68s on the 36-hole first day to build a four-shot lead. Nathan Barbieri (Australia), University of Texas commit Cole Hammer (Houston, TX), Boise State's Brian Humphreys (Vancouver, WA) and BYU's Peter Kuest (Fresno, CA) all began the day in a tie for second.
Of the four, only Barbieri was able to make a serious push at the lead, with a front-nine 4-under 32 that included an eagle at the 2nd and birdies at 7 and 8. That brought the Australian within one shot of Madey, who went out on 1-under 35.
On a day where only one player (UCLA's Hidetoshi Yoshihara) would break 70, Madey and Barbieri had a chance to separate from the field and make it a two-man race. But both struggled on the inward nine, each shooting a 2-over 38 and allowing the nearest players to get within reach.
"It was a lot tougher than yesterday," said Madey to the PNGA afterward. "It got really firm, fast and unforgiving, but I'm happy to be sleeping on the lead heading into the final round."
Chasing Madey (-7) and Barbieri (-6) are Cal commit James Song and Pepperdine golfer Joshua McCarthy (Danville, CA) at 4 under.
Hammer and Min Woo Lee (Australia) are the only other players under par through 54 holes, each at 2-under 214. Lee was a playoff runner-up in this tournament last year, and his countryman Barbieri hopes to do him one better in the final round on July 4th Wednesday.
Humphreys and Kuest both shot 76 on Tuesday to fall back to even par, tied for 7th with Fresno State's Alex Lee (Sacramento, CA).
Sahalee is not an easy course on which to hold a lead, as the narrow hole corridors demand premium ball-striking. As Hammer told the PNGA after round one, "It was tough. There was a big emphasis on being in the right place in the fairway because even if you’re in the right or left side of the fairway, if it’s the wrong place, you can be blocked out by trees, so setting yourself up with a good tee shot was really important."
DAY ONE RECAP
With 36-holes in the books at the 24th Sahalee Players Championship hosted by Sahalee Country Club, the lead belongs to Cole Madey. A junior to be at UCLA, Madey combined consecutive rounds of 4-under 68 during the two-round first day and at 8 under he is four clear of the field.
Madey, who recorded eight top-15 finishes this year for UCLA, began his day with a four-birdie, one-eagle, two-bogey opening round before playing bogey-free golf with four birdies in the second round.
Sharing second place at 4-under are Brian Humphreys (Boise State), Nathan Barbieri (Australia) and Cole Hammer (Texas commit) while in fifth there is a group of four others at 3-under.
Min Woo Lee, the former U.S. Junior champion who lost in a playoff to Sahith Theegala last year, is tied for ninth at the halfway point after rounds of 70-72 (-2). The Australian enters the tournament as the #6 ranked player in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Amateur Ranking.
The third round will be played on Tuesday, with the final round on July 4.
ABOUT THE Sahalee Players Championship
Inaugurated in 1992, the Sahalee Players
Championship (SPC) at its inception strove to
annually showcase the best amateur golfers in
the Pacific Northwest. As the stature of the
club continued to grow as a result of hosting
the 1998 PGA Championship and 2002 World
Golf Championships-NEC Invitational, the SPC's
founders decided to make the SPC a truly
international amateur event. As such,
invitations to the Sahalee Players
Championship are extended only to the finest
amateur players worldwide. Those asked to
compete will face the same challenge as the
professionals at the PGA Championship and
WGC-NEC Invitational — 72 holes at stroke
play over Sahalee's demanding South and
View Complete Tournament Information