The 107th Missouri Amateur kicked off this morning on Norwood Hills CC, West with 7:30 tee times on the first and 10th holes. The last group in the afternoon wave teed off at 2:26. It was a full day of golf—and will be again tomorrow as the field flips and the early players go late and vice versa. A field of 146 is competing over two rounds to determine the low 64 to advance into match play.
18 players were exempt from the “pre-qualifying: the five Missouri Amateur champions in the field, nine players from the 2013 MGA points list, three more who won individual MGA championships in 2013, and Patrick Britt, last year’s Norwood Hills club champion. The remaining 128 earned their way in by way of the six regional qualifiers.
As is often the case, the morning wave got the better golf weather with temps not extreme, an overcast sky for part of the morning, and not enough wind to seriously impact club selection. In the afternoon it was dry , hot, and breezy– and the scores were a bit higher.
At the end of the day there were 14 scores under par and another 8 at level par. I was lucky enough to follow what turned out to be the “feature” group in the morning. Joey Johnson, last year’s champion, shot a bogey-free 7 under 64 that was a thing of beauty. Joey birdied all three par-fives and finished with ten fours and eight threes. No twos, but no fives, either. Skip Berkmeyer and KU golfer Chase Hanna shot 67 and 69 respectively as the threesome shot 13 under. Berkmeyer and Hanna made only two bogeys each as the group racked up 17 birdies total.
The low 64 right now looks to be in the 150-151 range, and it will be a small miracle if we get to 64 tomorrow without a playoff for the last spots.
MGA Executive Director has promised a slightly tougher setup for tomorrow, but he won’t start “hiding” hole locations until the start of match play on Thursday. Go to www.mogolf.org for complete results of today’s round.