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The last time a member of The Country Club played in the finals of the Utah State Am was 14 years ago on the occasion of the Centennial Utah State Am. In that match Steve Brinton, a member of The Country Club, lost to Darrin Overson at Riverside Couontry Club. The last Country Club member to win the championship was back in 1961 when Joe Bernolfo defeated Arnie Ferrin at Alpine Country Club. The last time both finalists were members of The Country Club was back in 1930 when C.E. Foley defeated Dick Freed and the tournament was at The Country Club. Of course, during the early years of the Utah State Am it was mostly a members tournament. The first 20 years of the Utah State Am were held at The Country Club and it wasn’t until George Von Elm won the title as a 15-year-old that a non-member of the club was even in the championship match and that was in 1917.
Are the stars lining up again? The 114th Utah State Am is being held at The Country Club for the first time in 37 years, and two members of The Country Club have advanced to the quarterfinals, club champion Jon Wright and Christopher Grant, and since they are in opposite brackets they could face each other in the finals if they each win their two matchs Saturday. A third member of The Country Club, Thomas Young, won his first match in 21 holes over Conner Jones which advanced three Country Club members to the Round of 16, but Young was eliminated in that round by 2009 champion Zac Blair, 2-up.
Wright and Grant pulled off first round upsets as Wright knocked off one of the pre-tourney favorites Mason Casper 4 and 3 while Grant, the 32nd qualifier by virtue of a playoff, dispatched defending champion Jeff Evans, 4 and 2. In the Round of 16 Wright survived a 22-hole match with Nic Booth, and Grant had a relatively easy time posting a 4 and 3 win over Brady Stanger.
And so the quarterfinals pit Wright against Mike Jurca, who has won five significant tournaments this year, and Grant against another strong player, Christian Jensen.
For more on the Wright match with Nic Booth the Deseret News called it like this: http//www.deseretnews.com/article/print/765591207/Utah-State-Amateur-golf-Wright-wins-a-marathon-match-that-would-make-his-dad-proud.html.
Zac Blair remains the favorite, and he is currently ranked as the 23rd top amateur in the world amateur rankings. He faces last year’s runnerup Stratton Schulz in the quarters and would face either Mike Jurca or Jon Wright in the semifinals Saturday afternoon.
Complete results, including hole-by-hole of each match, is available on this web page by go to Championships, then scroll down to the Utah State Amateur at The Country Club, then click results.
Utah State Amateur Results
Round of 32
Chris Grant (32) def. Jeff Evans (1), 4 and 2
Brady Stanger (17) def. Jared Overton (16), 19 holes
Kyle Chappell (8) def. Jeff Jolley (25), 2 and 1
Christian Jensen (24) def. Cole Ogden (9), 5 and 4
Kenny You (4) def. Mike Bingham (29), 2 and 1
Brad Millard (20) def. Alex Stulce (13), 3 and 2
Carl Jensen (5) def. David Booth (28), 4 and 3
Joe Webber (21) def. Dan Horner (12), 3 and 1
Devon Purser (2) def. Andrew Barton (31), 2 and 1
Stratton Schulz (15) def. Steve Poulson (18) 4 and 3
Zac Blair (7) def. Gentry Hicks (26), 4 and 3
Thomas Young (23) def. Conner Jones (10), 21 holes
Mike Jurca (3) def. Thomas Wahlen (30), 2 and 1
Tanner Higham (19) def Patrick Fishburn (14), 19 holes
Jon Wright (27) def. Mason Casper (6), 5 and 3
Nic Booth (11) def. Casey Halliday (22), 22 holes
Round of 16
Grant def. Stanger, 4 and 3
Jensen def. Chappell, 1 up
You def. Millard, 2 up
Schulz def. Purser, 1 up
Blair def. Young, 2 up
Webber def. Jensen, 19 holes
Jurca def. Higham, 3 and 2
Wright def. Booth, 22 holes
Friday’s Quarterfinals Schedule
7:30 a.m. — Grant vs. Jensen
7:45 a.m. — You vs. Webber
8:00 a.m. — Schulz vs. Blair
8:15 a.m. — Jurca vs. Wright
Copyright 2012, Deseret News Publishing Company