The 18th hole at Aviara Golf Club
CARLSBAD, Calif. (Jan. 4, 2018) – There’s an undeniable draw to playing a competitive event on a course that hosts Tour players. It’s the story this week at AmateurGolf.com’s San Diego Amateur at Aviara Golf Club, site of the LPGA’s Kia Classic.
Aviara, one of Southern California’s gems, is not only known for its meticulous course conditions, but for the gorgeous floral landscaping that frames many holes. The Arnold Palmer-designed layout starts out at sea level and climbs towards the adjacent Four Seasons Resort, and then back down with some tempting holes. The 18th, with views of the Batiquitos Lagoon, is one of the best closers in Southern California.
Aviara is also the only Arnold Palmer-designed course in San Diego County.
The list of past champions across all divisions of the San Diego Amateur represents some of Southern California’s best contributions to college golf. Arizona senior Haley Moore is a two-time winner (2013, 2016). Moore became a familiar face last spring after holing the winning putt for the Wildcats in their national-title run. Oregon’s Amy Matsuoka won in 2017.
On the men’s side, USC standout Sean Crocker won the title in 2015, and other highlights include Florida senior Gordon Neale’s 2014 win, and current Web.com Tour player Trevor Simsby’s 2011 triumph in a playoff. Cal State San Marcos junior Ryan Bisharat won the 2017 edition.
What’s certain is that a new name will finish 36 holes atop the leaderboard on Monday given that the past champions aren’t in this year’s field.
As a field of SoCal talent flocks to Carlsbad, here are a few names to watch.
The Long Beach State freshman made three of four starts with the 1949ers, and scored a top-15 finish in his debut at the Ram Masters Invitational. Schafer, who is a native of Long Beach, finished in the top 5 at the 2017 SCGA Public Links.
The San Diego native started his sophomore season on the Cal roster after having played for UC Santa Barbara as a freshman. Maspat won the Concord City Amateur in 2018 and was T-29 at the SCGA Amateur.
: A redshirt junior at Cal, Cheatham is a well-known name on the amateur circuit. The Torrey Pines High School product redshirted the 2016-17 college season to focus on academics and his game but got plenty of reps in national events. He won the AmateurGolf.com La Costa Classic to start 2018 and in 2017, had top-20 finishes at the Palmetto Amateur, Cardinal Amateur and Southwestern Amateur. He was also T-7 at the SCGA Amateur.
: The San Diego native will compete in the mid-amateur division. In 2018, Gornik advanced to the quarterfinals of the Balboa Park Men’s Match Play Championship on his home course.
In 2018, Haas experienced some success locally with a T-28 at the Southern California Open and a T-45 at the SCGA Amateur. In 2017, he scored top-5 finishes at both the Pasadena City and the Long Beach City. Haas was T-9 at this event in 2016.
The Carlsbad local is a familiar face in AmateurGolf.com events, having won the AGC La Costa Classic in 2018 and finishing inside the top 5 in 2017. Oas, a senior golfer, was T-23 at the Hesler last year and 24th at the U.S. Senior Challenge.
The Oro Valley, Ariz., native won the senior division of this event in 2011 and again in 2013. Whitney has the distinction of having played in 43 of 50 states. Many of those starts come in tournament play – Whitney played a busy senior schedule in 2018, highlighted by top-25 finishes at the SOS Founders Cup and the Hesler.
Lim, a Clovis, Calif., resident, plays out of Dragonfly Golf Course. She played for New Mexico State last season as a freshman.
ABOUT THE AGC San Diego Amateur
The San Diego Amateur returns to Aviara Golf Club
in Carlsbad. Once again we are going to be treated
pros at one of the best venues in Southern
California, Aviara Golf Club -- as seen on TV during
LPGA's Kia Classic played in March!
Your entry fee includes 2 rounds of golf with cart,
prizes, trophies for division winners, and the
to play a Tour-proven golf course in a competitive
setting. Special rates for practice rounds and lodging
be offered. The San Diego Amateur is part of the
SCGA player rankings.
Players age 25 and over compete in the
Championship Division, (same tees, same prize
if there are at least 10 Mid-Ams, a separate prize will
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