- Conner Penfold photo
, a senior at Westlake High School in Austin, Texas, wasn’t looking to replicate Saturday’s record-breaking performance. He was concentrating on winning a golf tournament. Because how does one follow up a 10-under par, bogey-free 62?
“Of course, I was trying to keep the momentum going,” Dobson said. “But whenever you shoot a low number like that, the next day you just don’t have that same magic. You have to work with what you have. And today I really didn’t have my best stuff, so it was a grind.”
That grind reached its peak at the difficult par-3 8th at Baylands Golf Links, where Dobson made a double-bogey to bring eventual runner-up Cameron Keith
within striking distance at two shots back. Keith, a senior at De La Salle High School in Concord, Calif., birdied the ninth to climb within a shot of the lead, setting up a spectacular back-nine battle between two future college golfers.
“He’s got one of the best short games I’ve ever seen,” Dobson said of Keith, who will play for Dartmouth University in the fall. “He’s got to be one of the best chippers and putters in all of junior golf. It’s unbelievable.”
The pair would each go 3-under on the closing nine, bagging three birdies apiece including two on the same hole. Though it was Dobson tapping in for par at 18 to capture the title Baylands, just three miles from where he’ll play collegiately next season at Stanford University.
While Saturday’s round broke records, including both the competitive course record and the Amateurgolf.com Tour record, the Sunday win rang a different note. Dobson joins a star-studded list of past winners including Max Homa (2011) and Collin Morikawa (2016).
“It means a ton. I haven’t won in quite a while,” Dobson said. “To come out and play a new event in a new state with new grasses and win is really, really awesome.”
* * * * *
Mid-Amateur, Senior and Super Senior Divisions
Taking the Mid-Amateur title for the second consecutive tournament was Nate Jetter
, who placed fifth overall after rounds of 68 and 72. Third place went to 2021 Winter Invitational champion Beau Forest at 7-under, followed by St. Mary’s College freshman Mitchell Hoey
a shot back at 6-under.
Senior champion Michael Staskus
fended off a late run from runner-up Daniel O’Connor
to capture his second Amateurgolf.com Tour event in his last three tries. The 2021 Christmas Classic winner led the field by two strokes after day one and closed out a narrow victory over a fellow Olympic Club member.
“The hybrid would have come in too high and would have left a really tough chip,” Staskus said of his club selection at the par-5 ninth. “So I went with the big gun.”
The choice paid off considering O’Connor’s closing run of three birdies in four holes meant Staskus needed a birdie to win outright. From a tight lie in a shaved gully beside the green, Staskus executed a perfect chip to leave himself eight feet for the eventual winning birdie.
“Earlier I was making the big number but I’ve started to manage my game better,” Staskus said of his recent play.
The Super Senior title went to Michael Wishart
, who like Staskus went wire-to-wire. He turned his one-shot lead into three with a hole-out eagle to start his day at the par-4 10th. He’d go on to post his second straight 75 and take home the crystal with a three-stroke win over Tom Pera
ABOUT THE AGC Silicon Valley Amateur
The Silicon Valley Amateur is the first
tournament to have, on its past winner's list, a
champion. That would be Collin Morikawa, who won
2016 title. Just over 4 years later, he won the PGA
Championship just up the road at TPC Harding Park
2021 marked the announcement of Baylands Golf
Links as the tournament's new host venue. And wow,
did players enjoy it. It's
location in Palo Alto is fitting -- as the original garage
where Hewlett Packard was founded is located there,
and today's biggest tech companies dot the area
like the Canadian Geese on the fairways and
near Baylands in the winter. Like
Corica Park in Alameda, Baylands was recently
completely redesigned as a new course from the dirt
up, under the hand of architect Forrest Richardson,
the results are stunning.
This is a gross competition with Championship, Senior and Women's divisions. There will be no Net division.
For players age
49. Compete alongside the younger players in the
Championship Division, (same tees, same prize
opportunities) and if there are at least 10 Mid-Ams, a
separate prize and trophy will be awarded.
For players age
65+. Compete alongside the younger players in the
Senior Division, (same tees, same prize
opportunities) and a
separate prize and trophy will be awarded for low
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