Three Players Tied for 36-hole Lead at Nebraska Amateur
LINCOLN (July 9, 2019) – Red numbers were a bit tougher to find during the second round of the 111th Nebraska Amateur Championship on Tuesday at The Country Club of Lincoln, but three players at the top had no problem and they are tied for the 36-hole lead.
Tanner Owen, a Husker golfer, shot the low round of the day to get into the three-way tie for the lead at 138 (-6), along with Norfolk’s Luke Kluver and Fordyce’s Matthew Schaefer. After starting on the back nine and making the turn in 35 (-1), Owen caught fire on the front nine. He started birdie-birdie and added two more birdies on Nos. 5 and 8 for a front nine 32 (-4). His round of 67 (-5) matched the second lowest round of the championship so far.
Kluver, the 2017 and 2018 Nebraska Junior Golfer of the Year, made a splash early with an eagle-2 on the par-4 second hole. His round was up-and-down from there though, as he made four birdies and four bogeys the rest of the way for a round of 70 (-2). Schaefer, who will play at South Dakota State University next year, was the hottest player on the course for a while. He made birdies on three of his first six holes on the front nine, and then added birdies on Nos. 10 and 13 to get to 5-under for the day. Schaefer narrowly missed birdies on Nos. 16 and 17, before finishing with a bogey on No. 18 to give him a round of 68 (-4), the second-lowest of the day.
All three leaders played in the morning wave, and three more players broke par in the afternoon, but all three shot 71 (-1). One of those players was Caleb Badura of Aurora, the 2019 Nebraska Match Play Champion, who made five birdies, but also two bogeys and a double-bogey. Badura is in fourth, just one stroke back at 139 (-5).
The first-round leader Jace Guthmiller of Lincoln was 10 strokes higher today, following up his record-tying 65 (-7) with a 75 (+3). The former Husker golfer is now in fifth at 140 (-4). Fernando Arzate of Bellevue, who started the day two strokes behind Guthmiller in second, is now one-stroke behind him in sixth. Arzate, a former Bellevue University golfer, shot a second round 74 (+2) and is in at 141 (-3).
Two three-time champions are tied for seventh at 143 (-1), including the defending champion Alex Schaake of Omaha. Schaake made three straight bogeys to finish the front nine in 35 (-1), but three more bogeys on the back nine dropped him to a round of 73 (+1). It’s his first over-par round in the Nebraska Amateur since 2016, ending a streak of nine straight rounds at par or better. The 2010, 2011 and 2013 champion Andy Sajevic of Omaha grinded out a round of 73 (+1) as well, making three birdies, to go along with two bogeys and a double-bogey. They are tied with Noah Hofman of McCook, who shot a 74 (+2), which included an eagle-3 on the par-5 13th hole.
Travis Minzel of Lincoln, the 2004 Nebraska Match Play Champion and a three-time Nebraska Mid-Amateur Champion, rounds out the top 10 at even-par 144. Minzel posted one of the three rounds of 71 (-1) in the afternoon. The 1989 champion John Sajevic of Fremont made history by making yet another cut. Sajevic shot a second round 75 (+3) to get to 149 (+5) and make his 34th career cut at the Nebraska Amateur, tying Larry Sock for the most all-time. It’s also his 20th straight made cut, which ties another record held by Sock. Sajevic is tied for 24th after two rounds and could extend his records for most Top 25 finishes (33) and most Top 10 finishes (23) with a good final 36 holes.
The 2003 and 2004 champion AJ Elgert of Lincoln also made the cut and is tied for 28th at 150 (+6). Ryan Nietfeldt of Elkhorn, the 2002 champion, is tied for 34th at 151 (+7).
The third round begins at 7 a.m., with the leaders set to start around noon. Kluver and Owen will play in the final pairing at 12 p.m. Full results, third round pairings and more are available on the championship website below.
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.