Three Teams Tied for First Round Four-Ball Lead
Three teams are tied for the lead after a windy and cold first round of the 18th Nebraska Four-Ball Championship at The Players Club in Omaha.
Omaha’s Mark Wright and Bennington’s Steve Buroker were the first to post the best round of the day, a 68 (-3). They made five birdies on the day, including both par-3s on the back nine. Buroker holed a putt from off the back of the 16th green for birdie, one of the most difficult holes of the day.
Wright and Buroker were followed quickly by another 68 (-3) from Cole Grandfield of Omaha and John Sutko of Elkhorn. Sutko got his team off to a hot start, holing out for eagle-2 on the par-4 fifth hole. They made the turn in 31 (-4), and stayed at 4-under until the 18th hole, where both players made bogey.
Two-time champions David Easley of Lincoln and Joel Wisdom of Omaha had a rocky start to their round, at 1-over through four holes, but Easley caught fire, birdieing three of the next five holes. He threw in another birdie on No. 14, and Wisdom rolled in one on No. 17 to tie the lead. It’s been seven years since Easley and Wisdom won their second title, and 13 years since their first.
Outside of the three teams tied for the lead, there are several contenders still in the mix. Five teams are tied for fourth at 69 (-2), including Andy Sajevic of Omaha and John Sajevic of Fremont. John, who won a record three titles with Lincoln’s Knox Jones, made an incredible birdie on the last, hitting a 3-wood with his third shot, to put them one back. Andy is a three-time Nebraska Amateur champion.
Also sitting a stroke back is Ryan Knispel of Omaha and Ryan Nietfeldt of Elkhorn, who are competing together for the first time since 2016, which ended a five-year streak of top four finishes. Nietfeldt birdied the par-5 18th hole to post 69 (-2). Bradley Huyck and Will Hagel of Omaha, Chad Geiger of Milford and TJ Reynolds of Lincoln and Mike Siwa of Lincoln and Patrick Tryon of Omaha are also tied for fourth at 2-under.
Six more teams are tied for ninth at 70 (-1), including Brett Hoffman of Kearney and Zach Hoffman of Omaha, Brian Csipkes of Gretna and William Amundsen of Bennington, Jay Moore and Travis Minzel of Lincoln, John Engel of Elkhorn and Tad Leistico of Omaha, Michael Muller and Ryan Turek of Omaha and Scott Tidle and Trent Price of Lincoln.
Due to likely frost on Sunday morning, the final round will now begin at 9 a.m. off both No. 1 and No. 10 tees. The final group, Wright/Buroker and Grandfield/Sutko, will start at 11 a.m. off No. 1.
Visit the championship website below for full first round results, final round pairings and more. Check us out on Twitter (@NGAgolf) for highlights of the day.