Wyatt Takes Lead at Nebraska Senior Amateur
First Round Conducted Thursday at Norfolk Country Club
NORFOLK (August 27, 2020) - Lincoln's Ed Wyatt finished strong to take the lead after the first round of the 22nd Nebraska Senior Amateur Championship at Norfolk Country Club on Thursday.
Wyatt, the 2019 Nebraska Senior Match Play Champion, struggled off the tee throughout the day, but closed out his round with back-to-back birdies. He was just one of two players to finish under-par, with his opening 70 (-2), giving him a one-stroke lead.
A 15-foot birdie putt dropped on No. 8 for Wyatt, his 17th hole of the day. Then he stuck a wedge close on No. 9 and made a tricky downhill putt for a second-straight birdie to finish his round. Wyatt said that he hit just three fairways throughout the day and was able to keep the round together with his short game.
The only other player to break par was Omaha's Gregg Vonnahme, who finished a stroke back at 71 (-1). Vonnahme started on No. 10 as well, and made back-to-back birdie-4s on Nos. 18 and 1 to get into red figures. A bogey on No. 2 dropped him back to 1-under, but he then made seven-straight pars to close out his round.
Three players finished two strokes back at 72 (E), including Lincoln's Steve Peterson, Papillion's Eric Murphy and Fremont's Stan Darling. All three players were 1-under heading to their final hole and made bogey. Peterson will join Wyatt and Vonnahme in the final group at 9:48 a.m. on Friday.
Another group of four players is tied for sixth at 73 (+1), including two past champions. The defending champion John Sajevic of Fremont is one of those in at 1-over. He birdied No. 13 to get to 1-under, but a double-bogey on No. 15 dropped him back over par. Sajevic is looking to extend his own record with a fifth Nebraska Senior Amateur title. Omaha's Jay Muller, the 2015 Champion, made a couple early bogeys, but hit the par-5 sixth green in two and made birdie to get into the tie at 1-over.
Omaha's Rob Mullin had the round of the day going, making three straight birdies on Nos. 18, 1 and 2. Mullin nearly spun his approach shot on No. 2 back into the hole, and his tap-in birdie moved him to 4-under. However, a tough stretch on the front nine dropped him back to 73 (+1), as he played his final seven holes in 5-over. Kearney's Brian McGuire made three birdies and four bogeys to join the group at 1-over.
Another strong group of players sit at 74 (+2), tied for 10th. Past champions Carl Johnson of Omaha and Mike Krumland of Columbus both shot that number, and are joined by a couple other NGA Champions. The 2005 Nebraska Mid-Amateur Champion Rick Dusek of Omaha and the 2018 Nebraska Senior Match Play Champion Matt Haynes of Bellevue are both in at 74 (+2), as well.
Pairings for the final round are available on the championship website below, along with the scoring page and additional information.
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.