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Grand Island Brings State’s Best for Nebraska Match Play Championship

Grand Island Brings State's Best for Nebraska Match Play Championship

Stroke Play Qualifying Begins Monday at Riverside Golf Club

GRAND ISLAND (June 17, 2022) – The 55th Nebraska Match Play Championship is set for June 20-24 at Riverside Golf Club in Grand Island with plenty of talent in the field.

The championship begins with 36 holes of Stroke Play Qualifying on June 20 and 21, after which the field will be cut to 32 players and seeded into a match play bracket. Match play begins Wednesday, June 22, with the Rounds of 32 and 16, followed by the Quarterfinals and Semifinals on Thursday, and the 36-hole Championship Final on Friday.

Current Husker golfer and Aurora native Caleb Badura is the most recent winner in the field, claiming the title in 2019. Badura just finished his senior season on the University of Nebraska golf team, ending with a 75.3 shooting average through 20 rounds. Other past champions competing include Travis Minzel of Lincoln (2004) and Ryan Nietfeldt of Elkhorn (2003). Each will look to become only the eighth player to win multiple Nebraska Match Play Championships.

Nietfeldt is on the lookout for his tenth career NGA title at the course he grew up on, and where he won the Nebraska Match Play Championship in 2003. Another championship win would tie him with Fremont's John Sajevic for the most career men’s titles. Nietfeldt already has claimed one trophy this year, winning the Nebraska Four-Ball in April with partner Blake Giroux of Bennington.

Reigning Nebraska Amateur Champion David Easley of Lincoln looks to win his first match play title, along with the top three players in the NGA Point Standings: Johnny Spellerberg of Bennington, Luke Gutschewski of Elkhorn, and Danny Woodhead of Elkhorn. Woodhead, a 10-year NFL veteran running back, made waves earlier this month after shooting even-par at Omaha Country Club to advance past Local Qualifying for the U.S. Open. He fell short in Final Qualifying at Springfield Country Club in Ohio.

Luke Gutschewski, who now plays for Iowa State, is trying for his third NGA title. He kicked off his summer in impressive fashion at the Fremont Invitational, shooting rounds of 64 (-7) and 66 (-5) without a bogey to win by five strokes. He's scheduled to play in Stroke Play Qualifying with a couple of Creighton golfers, Omaha's Charlie Zielinski and Tristan Nelko. Zielinski also won a point event, the Dinsdale Classic hosted by Riverside Golf Club, firing a final round 64 (-8) to win by a stroke over Gutschewski.

Riverside Golf Club is a par-72 layout that will measure around 6,751 yards for the championship. Play begins at 8 a.m. for Monday and Tuesday's Stroke Play Qualifying. Pairings for qualifying are available on the championship website below, along with the scoring page and additional information.

Nebraska Match Play Championship

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.

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