Defending Champs Repeat at WSGA Senior and Super Senior Men’s Amateur Championships
DuPont, Wash. (September 27, 2012) – Defending champion Tom Brandes of Bellevue, Wash. capped an outstanding championship season with a final round 3-under-par 69 at The Home Course to win the 26th Washington State Senior Men's Amateur Championship. In the 5th Washington State Super Senior Men's Amateur Championship, defending champion Ron Petersen of Coquitlam, B.C. made a final round charge with a 2-over-par 74 to outlast Travis Gamble of Gig Harbor, Wash. and repeat as champion.
Entering the final round with a two shot lead over Gudmund Lindbjerg of Port Moody, B.C., Brandes quickly pulled away from the field on the front nine with a spotless 5-under-par 31 that included birdies on holes one, three, four, seven and nine. He made the turn at 7-under-par for the championship and six shots clear of Lindbjerg. "I wanted to go low today," he said. "The first two days, I hit it about the same but today I knew it was out there, especially as good as the greens were."
Bogeys at 12 and 13 dropped him back a few strokes, but the rest of the field simply could not muster enough fire power to make a run. "I wavered a little bit on the back nine but I wanted to get something in the 60s." He did just that, finishing with a final round 69 for a championship total of 5-under-par 211, good enough for a six shot cushion over Lindbjerg.
After a final round of 1-over-par 73 that included one birdie and two bogeys, Lindbjerg finished alone in second place with a three day total of 1-over-par 217. Keith Crimp of Ellensburg, Wash. and John Gallacher of Burnaby, B.C. finished eight shots off the pace at 3-over-par 219 for the championship.
The win caps an impressive year for Brandes, who won the Washington State Senior Men's Champion of Champions, the Washington State Men's Mid-Amateur Championship, the Pacific Northwest Senior Men's Amateur Championship, and the Pacific Northwest Men's Mid-Amateur Championship earlier this year. "A lot of it has to do with tournament experience, having played on the big stage in a couple of U.S. Senior Opens," Brandes said about his year. "You may not excel at that level, but when it's over, you learn how to handle pressure. I've learned how to stay focused. That's been a big difference." (Watch Brandes' Interview Here).
For Petersen, it took a bit more work to defend his title, as he entered the final round trailing second round leader Travis Gamble of Gig Harbor, Wash. by three strokes. The Super Senior Men's Amateur field teed off on the back nine, but Petersen made his move on the front nine with back-to-back birdies on holes seven and eight en route to a 1-under-par 35 that allowed him to slip past Gamble and into the lead. His championship total of 7-over-par 223 was good enough for a three shot victory over Gamble. With the win, Petersen becomes the second two-time winner in the championship's history along with Bruce Richards of Seattle, Wash.
Gamble struggled early, posting seven bogeys on his front nine en route to a 7-over-par 43. He recovered nicely on the back nine with a 1-over-par 37 but it was simply too little, too late. He finished alone in second place with a three day total of 10-over-par 226.
Shelton Washburn of Chimacum, Wash. posted a final round 3-over-par 75 to finish in third place with a three-day total of 11-over-par 227.