Bartels is Nebraska Junior Golfer of the Year
OMAHA (November 12, 2019) - The Nebraska Golf Association is proud to announce the selection of Lincoln’s Josh Bartels as the 2019 Nebraska Junior Amateur Golfer of the Year.
Bartels, a Lincoln Southwest graduate who is now competing for the University of Nebraska-Omaha, had a stellar year, despite not winning either of the NGA’s junior championships. It was a key stretch in June that led him to the top spot in the NGA Junior Point Standings. Bartels was dominant early on at the 2019 Nebraska Junior Match Play Championship at Awarii Dunes Golf Club in Axtell. Entering as the No. 13 seed, he rolled through his first four matches, never needing more than 16 holes to win. He won three of those in 14 holes or less, including over Junior Cup teammates, Jake Kluver of Norfolk and Isaac Heimes of Norfolk. He faced Elkhorn’s Luke Gutschewski in the final, and after a birdie on the 17th hole, Bartels held a 1-up lead. However, Gutschewski sank a long eagle putt on the par-5 18th hole, and went on to win in 20 holes, leaving Bartels with a runner-up finish.
It didn’t take long for Bartels to bounce back though, as he birdied four of his final five holes to shoot 68 (-4) at Wild Horse Golf Club in Gothenburg to earn the lone qualifying spot at the U.S. Junior Amateur Sectional Qualifier. That led to another impressive performance at the 72nd U.S. Junior Amateur Championship at Inverness Club in Ohio, where Bartels played well in Stroke Play Qualifying and advanced to Match Play through a playoff. He fell in the Round of 64, to the No. 1 seed, but he’s the first Nebraskan since 2013 to make it into the bracket.
Bartels finished fourth at the 52nd Nebraska Junior Amateur Championship in July at Beatrice Country Club. His 220 (+4) total left him four strokes back, and his first round 68 (-4) was the second lowest round of the championship. He also performed well at the 111th Nebraska Amateur Championship at The Country Club of Lincoln earlier that month. Bartels finished tied for 11th, and was the second-lowest junior in the field. He was the No. 16 seed at the 52nd Nebraska Match Play Championship at The Players Club in June, after rounds of 77 (+6) and 69 (-2) in Stroke Play Qualifying. He lost in the Round of 32 to Lincoln’s Jay Moore.
Bartels won the Nebraska Junior PGA Championship to qualify for the 2019 Junior PGA Championship, where he missed the cut by one stroke after a second round 66 (-4). He also finished third at the NSAA Class A Boys Golf Championship.
Bartels will be honored at the Nebraska Golf Association's annual awards banquet on Friday, November 15 at The Country Club of Lincoln. In addition, the NGA will recognize its Amateur Golfer of the Year, Girls’ Amateur Golfer of the Year and Senior Amateur Golfer of the Year. The Nebraska Women's Amateur Golf Association's Player of the Year will also be honored.
About the NGA
The Nebraska Golf Association, founded in 1966, is comprised of all members of public and private clubs and/or municipal or regional golf associations which utilize an approved handicap service recognized by the USGA and provided by the NGA. Our mission is to uphold and promote the game of golf and its values to all golfers in Nebraska. Among the duties of the Association include governance of member clubs and service as their handicapping and course rating authority, conduct of state golf championships, local USGA qualifying & other notable competitions, promotion of junior golf, presentation of worthwhile educational programs and support of allied golf organizations in Nebraska. The Nebraska Golf Association is an Allied Golf Association of the USGA and carries out core services including Handicap Administration and Oversight, Course Rating, Rules of Golf and Rules of Amateur Status, Tournaments and USGA Championship Qualifiers and USGA Initiatives and Community Programs.