Hathcoat fires 65, tops bracket at NCGA Match Play
Blake Hathcoat (NCGA photo)
Blake Hathcoat (NCGA photo)

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (Aug. 21, 2018) – For a while on Tuesday, the question of who was going to be the No. 1 seed and medalist at this week’s annual NCGA Amateur Match Play Championship was up in the air.

Then, St. Mary’s junior Blake Hathcoat emphatically provided the answer.

Hathcoat, a Fresno native, left no doubts, posting a championship record-tying 7-under 65 on another calm day at par-72 Spyglass Hill to finish stroke-play qualifying with a two-day score of 9-under 135. He beat the field by six shots.

The 65, which tied Maverick McNealy’s 2016 record mark, also ties the lowest score by an individual at Spyglass Hill in the NCGA’s long history of events at the Robert Trent Jones designed layout.

Coming off a solid first-round 70, Hathcoat birdied nine of his 18 holes, including five on the back nine, where he posted a 31. The only things slowing him down from a 63 were bogeys on Nos 3 and 8. The course record at Spyglass is 62, held by Phil Mickelson and Luke Donald.

Two others moving up the leaderboard were former Junior Tour of Northern California Player of the Year Josh McCarthy and 2015 NCGA Player of the Year Nick Moore.

McCarthy, who now plays at Pepperdine and is coming off a Round-of-32 run at last week’s U.S. Amateur, carded a 69 to earn the No. 2 seed with a total of 3-under 141. Moore, who won this year’s NCGA Amateur Stroke Play Championship, also had a 69, finishing at 142 to earn the No. 3 seed.

UCLA’s Eddy Lai, who was runner-up to Shintaro Ban in the 2016 championship and led the field after a first-round 69, fell back to a 74. Lai will still be the No. 4 seed.

The cutline for match play came at 7-over 151. Among those missing the cut were 2017 NCGA Player of the Year Jason Anthony (152) and 2016-2017 JTNC Player of the Year Ash Hakim (152).

Results: NCGA Match Play
WinCAThomas HutchisonSan Jose, CA400
Runner-upCANed JensenSan Francisco, CA260
SemifinalsCADaniel KimSan Jose, CA160
SemifinalsCAMatt CohnSan Francisco, CA160
QuarterfinalsCARyan GraumanAlamo, CA120

View full results for NCGA Match Play


The oldest of the NCGA’s major events, the Amateur Match Play Championship, dates back to 1903 when it was first played at San Rafael GC. Varying formats have been used over the 100+ years of competition but today the tournament is 36 holes of stroke-play qualifying, followed by a 32-person seeded match play bracket. Pre-qualifying required for non-exempt players. Players must have a handicap index of 5.4 or less.

View Complete Tournament Information

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