Dan Sullivan (USGA photo)
By David Ober
, AmateurGolf.com correspondent
LOS ANGELES (Sept. 10, 2018) – At 51 years of age, Dan Sullivan
of Pasadena is still one of the best mid-amateurs in the country, so when he tees it up in a senior event, he is always a player to watch.
He didn’t disappoint in this year’s L.A. City Senior Amateur Championship, firing back-to-back rounds of 4-under 68 for a three-shot victory over David Ober (71-68) of Riverside. Sullivan was six ahead of Iain Macdonald
of Fullerton (70-72).
Played at Griffith Park’s Harding and Wilson courses, the tournament featured a strong field of accomplished amateurs, including many-time SCGA title winner (and 1996 U.S. Public Links champion) Tim Hogarth
(72-73, T4), 11-time USGA participant Iain Macdonald, 12-time USGA participant Patrick Carrigan (76-69, T4), 13-time USGA veteran Michael Turner
(74-74, T8), and 12-time USGA qualifier Bob Valerio
, among others.
This was Sullivan’s second senior win. He won the 2017 Pasadena City Senior in his inaugural senior outing. He finished secondnd to Hogarth in last year’s L.A. City Senior.
Ask about how senior wins feel versus open or mid-am events, Sullivan simply expressed delight at winning.
"Any win feels really good, especially with as many accomplished players in the field as there were,” he said. “Also gave me some confidence going into my tournaments coming up.”
One of those tournaments is the much sought-after Crump Cup at legendary Pine Valley, where Sullivan will compete as a mid-am since he is not yet 55, which is the starting age for most national- and regional-level senior events.
Sullivan was never in any serious trouble, as he jumped out to a quick first-round lead by playing the front nine in 4-under par. He then played the front nine on Sunday in 5 under and had built his lead over Ober to five strokes with nine to play. But after Ober birdied the 12th to get to 4 under for the day and 5 under for the tournament, Sullivan bogeyed the 13th to drop back to 8 under, giving him a 3-shot lead with five to play.
“I knew he (Ober) was playing well, but I had to actually look at my phone to see what he shot on day one to see where things stood on the back nine,” said Sullivan.
“I then knew I was three ahead going into 14 and then when he didn’t make his putt there or birdie 15, I figured parring in would be good enough.”
That’s exactly what he did, making routine pars on the closing holes, while Ober could only match that.
“Dan was on autopilot, and the course was playing soft, so I never really felt like I could catch him, since I didn’t see him making any mistakes coming in,” said Ober. “Honestly, I’m proud to even be mentioned with these guys. They’re my ‘amateur golf idols,’ to be honest."
ABOUT THE Los Angeles City Senior
Minimum age of 50; Maximum Hdcp of 30. 36
stroke play event with Championship and
Handicap Divisions. To enter the championship flight
you must hold a current index of 5.0 or
less. Any player with a current index may enter the
handicap flights if desired.
View Complete Tournament Information