Nebraska Four-Ball to Kick-off 2024 Season

Nebraska Four-Ball to Kick-off 2024 Season

Championship Begins Saturday at Tatanka Golf Club

OMAHA (May 1, 2024) - The 2024 championship season has arrived with the 23rd Nebraska Four-Ball Championship to be conducted this weekend at Tatanka Golf Club in Niobrara.

A new entry process was tested out for the popular championship, with exempt players and sides given two weeks to secure their spot in the field. After that, entries opened for non-exempt players and the field of 64 sides was filled within a few minutes after opening.

The field features just three past champion teams, including the defending champions, but nine others who have at least one partner who owns a Four-Ball title. Austin Miller of Elkhorn and Johnny Spellerberg of Bennington are back to defend their title, the first won at Tatanka. Miller and Spellerberg posted a final round 64 (-8) to win by two strokes with a 130 (-14) total. Spellerberg went on to win the Nebraska Mid-Amateur as well, and was named the 2023 Nebraska Amateur Golfer of the Year. The former Creighton teammates are paired with Christopher Rager of South Sioux City and Will Andersen of Dakota City (tied for sixth last year) at 9:50 a.m. off No. 1 for Saturday's first round.

The 2022 Champions, Bennington's Blake Giroux and Elkhorn's Ryan Nietfeldt, finished tied for 13th last year in their title defense. Nietfeldt owns 10 NebGolf titles, which is tied for second all-time, and is looking to tie Fremont's John Sajevic for the record. Giroux and Nietfeldt are paired with Omaha's Joey Huliska and Charlie Zielinski, who made a first-round run last year, before finishing tied for 20th. They'll tee off at 2 p.m off No. 10.

Omaha's Dylan Heng and Norfolk's Lance Lawson won the 2017 title in record fashion, and are back again after a T-28 finish last year. They set several championship marks in 2017, including the 36 and 18-hole scoring records. They'll tee it up alongside Fremont's Andrew Egan and Cambridge's Preston Carbaugh at 10:10 a.m. off No. 10.

Other past champions in the field with a different partner, includes Ryan Turek of Bennington, who is playing with 2022 Nebraska Amateur Champion Shaun Campbell, a Creighton Bluejay from New Zealand. Turek won in 2021 with Omaha's Cole Grandfield. They'll play with another past champion, Matt Petersen of Omaha and his partner, Curtis Taylor of Bennington. Petersen won his title back in 2003 with Jeff Churchich of Omaha.

Lincoln's Travis Minzel has teamed up with Lincoln's Jay Moore again, following a tied for ninth finish last year. They were in the mix after four-straight birdies to close their first round, and a 32 (-4) on the front nine during the final round, but fell off the pace on the back nine. They finished runner-up to Turek and Grandfield after a playoff in 2021. Minzel owns two titles with Lincoln's Scott Tridle, while Moore is looking for his first NebGolf title. Tridle is competing again with Mike Leising of Lincoln, after they tied for fourth last year with a final round 65 (-7). The two teams are paired together at 10:10 a.m. off No. 1.

Fremont's John Sajevic, a record three-time champion with Lincoln's Knox Jones, will partner with his son, four-time Nebraska Amateur Champion Andy Sajevic, once again. The father-son duo has four top-five finishes in the past six years, including a tie for runner-up in 2023. They were tied for the lead with three holes to play, but parred their way in, while Spellerberg/Miller made two more birdies to close. They'll play the first round with another top contending team, Alex Farrell and Danny Woodhead of Elkhorn. Farrell won the 2018 title with Chris Green of Elkhorn.

Ryan Knispel of Omaha won the 2019 title with Nietfeldt and is set to play with Omaha's Kelly Karmazin again this year. Jayson Brueggemann of Lincoln, the 2010 Champion with Omaha's Patrick Duffy, is back to compete with Caleb Harms of Beatrice. Papillion's Adam Cordes and Omaha's JT Hudson are also returning as teammates. Cordes and La Vista's Brian Fehr were the first team to pull off back-to-back titles when they won in 2013 and 2014, and still hold that distinction.

Tatanka Golf Club will host its second NebGolf championship. The club, which opened in 2015, is located in Niobrara near the Ohiya Casino Resort. The course received multiple accolades after opening, including the "Best New U.S. Resort Course" from GOLF Magazine and was runner-up for Golf Digest's "Best New Public Course" award. Tatanka features prairie-style golf, with lots of elevation changes and many trees present throughout the property as well. The par-72 layout will be played around 6,881 yards for the championship.

The championship features 36-holes of stroke play over the weekend, with the Final Round scheduled for Sunday. Play begins Saturday with starting times off Nos. 1 and 10 from 9 - 10:30 a.m. with the afternoon wave from 1:30 - 2:20 p.m. Pairings for the first round are available on the championship website below, along with the scoring page and additional information.

Nebraska Four-Ball Championship

About NebGolf
The Nebraska Golf Association (NebGolf), 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 NebGolf. 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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