MIDWAY — When it comes to this year’s Utah State Amateur, you just can’t keep these Summerhays kids out of the news.
The two teenagers were the big stories before the tournament ever began and were again Tuesday at Soldier Hollow Golf Course. Grace Summerhays, celebrating her 15th birthday, qualified for the 64-golfer match play, while 16-year-old Preston Summerhays, the defending State Amateur champion, just missed his goal of being the medalist when his putt on the final hole slid past the hole.
Colton Tanner, a University of Utah golfer, who has lived in various parts of the country but now resides in Park CIty, won medalist honors, shooting a 69 Tuesday to go with his first-round 67 and edge Preston Summerhays by one shot.
Preston Summerhays acknowledged that he was disappointed not to win medalist honors, saying that was one of his goals going into the week.
“It’s not super important, but the No. 1 goal is to get to match play,” said Summerhays, who ended up with the No. 2 seed. “I am a little bit (disappointed), but I’ll be fine.”
Preston tees off at 9:50 a.m. and will face Patrick Horstmann of Midvale, who was one of nine survivors of a sudden-death playoff for the final match play spots late in the evening.
He had a chance to at least tie for medalist honors as he was 8-under for the tournament going into his last hole. He hit a 3-wood off the tee, trying to get a level lie for his second shot, but instead he “roasted it” too far and ended up with a tricky downhill lie. His next shot hit the bunker and he couldn’t make his 15-footer coming back.
Grace Summerhays shot a 74 on the Silver Course Monday and needed a similar score on the more difficult Gold Course Tuesday to make match play. She parred her first eight holes and a birdie on No. 9 gave her “confidence” for the back nine, where a birdie at her 17th hole after a couple of bogeys gave her a 72 and a 146 total.
“It feels great, my goal was to make match play,” she said. “I knew I could for sure, had to play well obviously, I felt confident going into today.”
She thought she was the first female to make it into match play, but Annie Thurman was actually the first to accomplish the feat, back in 2004 at Jeremy Ranch when it was a 156-player field with 32 match-play spots instead of the current 288-golfer field with 64 match-play spots.
Grace Summerhays will play Brennan Coburn, a Utah State golfer who played prep golf at Layton High School. Coburn had the same score, a 146 with two rounds of 73.
Preston Summerhays believes his sister will do well in match play.
“I’m so excited for her, I knew she could do it,” he said. “Her game is great and she’ll do really well in match play. Her game is well-rounded. Whoever plays her is going to have a tremendous amount of pressure on them.”
Before the tournament, Preston and Grace said it would be “awesome” to play each other in match play since they play together almost every day anyway. The way the brackets are situated, they would each have to win four matches before they would meet in the semifinals.
The best round of the day belonged to Cole Ponich, who fired a 6-under-par 66 on the Gold Course and finished in third place at 139. Ponich, who will be a freshman at BYU in the fall, might have tied for medalist honors except for a triple bogey on his 15th hole the day before. He’s matched up with former professional Tommy Johnson at 11:30 a.m.
At the conclusion of play Tuesday, 12 golfers who came in at 5-over-par 149 had to go into a sudden-death playoff to determine the final nine spots. The nine players who survived were Greg Slack, Brett Garner, Zane Brownrigg, Cooper Jones, Aaron Smith, Patrick Horstmann, Christopher Romney, Kurt Owen and Tommy Johnson. The three who were eliminated were Alex Smith, Bob Mitchell and Bryan Dalton.
136 — Colton Tanner (67-69)
137 — Preston Summerhays (67-70)
139 — Cole Ponich (73-66)
140 — Colton Dallimore (72-68)
141 — Denny Job (72-69), Cameron Tucker (72-69), Zach Jones (71-70), Mitchell Schow (73-68)
142 — Nathan Ouimette (65-77), Masen Ward (71-71), Brigham Gibbs (68-74)
143 — Kelton Hirsch (71-72), Tanner Telford (73-70), Chase Lansford (75-68), Christopher Cheney (71-72), Carl Jensen (72-71)
144 — Triston Gardner (73-71), Dan Horner (72-72), Reed Nielsen (70-74), Cole Ogden (71-73)
145 — Jake Vincent (74-71), Alec Williams (71-74), Joshua Pehrson (74-71), Peyton Hastings (68-77), Ryan Barber (75-70), Spencer Dunaway (72-73), Thomas Young (73-72), Braydon Swapp (76-69)
146 — Boston Watts (77-69), Ryan Brimley (75-71), Dylan Chugg (74-72), Spencer Wallace (78-68), Kyler Dearden (70-76) Brennan Coburn (73-73), Ryan Seamons (73-73), Blake Murray (72-74), Grace Summerhays (74-72)
147 — Jayce Frampton (77-70), Nick Becker (73-74), John Owen (74-73), Steven Croft (75-72), Hunter Howe (74-73), Derek Penman (72-75), Andrew Cottle (73-74), Joshua Lansky (71-76), Clay Bingham (75-72), John Reid (74-73), Kyle Tueller (74-73), Cole Wecker (73-74), Michael Branca (76-71)
148 — Elijah Turner (73-75), Tanner Alder (73-75), Paul Cannon (73-75), Clark Jones (71-77), Noah Schone (77-71)
149 — Tommy Johnson (71-78), Aaron Smith (73-76), Alex Smith (73-76), Patrick Hosrtmann (73-76), Zane Brownrigg (75-74), Kurt Owen (69-80), Bob Mitchell (74-75), Bryan Dalton (73-76), Christopher Romney (73-76), Brett Garner (73-76), Cooper Jones (77-72), Greg Slack (74-75)
150 — Brady Bigler (74-76), Tanner Taft (77-73), Helaman Ofahengaue (80-70), Patrick Murphy (78-72), Jason Hargett (74-76), Logan Skaika (76-74), Tyler Labrum (73-77), Christian James (75-75), Eric Loveland (77-73), Ben Jorgensen (80-70), Lane Deason (71-79), Joshua Savage (71-79)
First-round matches Wednesday
7:30 a.m. — Colton Tanner vs. Greg Slack
7:40 a.m, — Kyler Searden vs. Ryan Brimley
7:50 a.m. — Chase Lansford vs. Michael Branca
8:00 a.m. — Cole Ogden vs. Nick Becker
8:10 a.m. — Mitchell Schow vs. Brett Garner
8:20 a.m. — Alec Williams vs. Jayce Frampton
8:30 a.m. — Brigham Gibbs vs. Zane Brownrigg
8:40 a.m. — Thomas Young vs. Andrew Cottle
8:50 a.m. — Colton Dallimore vs. Cooper Jones
9:00 a.m. — Dylan Chugg vs. Blake Murray
9:10 a.m. — Kelton Hirsch vs. Noah Schone
9:20 a.m. — Triston Gardner vs. Steven Croft
9:30 a.m. — Denny Job vs. Aaron Smith
9:40 a.m. — Peyton Hastings vs. Spencer Wallace
9:50 a.m. — Christopher Cheney vs. Paul Cannon
10:00 a.m. — Spencer Dunaway vs. Joshua Lansky
10:10 a.m. — Preston Summerhays vs. Patrick Horstmann
10:20 a.m. — Ryan Seamons vs. Boston Watts
10:30 a.m. — Carl Jensen vs. John Owen
10:40 a.m. — Reed Nielsen vs. Hunter Howe
10:50 a.m. — Zach Jones vs. Christopher Romney
11:00 a.m. — Braydon Swapp vs. Clay Bingham
11:10 a.m. — Masen Ward vs. Clark Jones
11:20 a.m. — Jake Vincent vs. Cole Wecker
11:30 a.m. — Cole Ponich vs. Tommy Johnson
11:40 a.m. — Brennan Coburn vs. Grace Summerhays
11:50 a.m. — Tanner Telford vs. Elijah Turner
12:00 p.m. — Dan Horner vs. Kyle Tueller
12:10 p.m. — Cameron Tucker vs. Kurt Owen
12:20 p.m. — Joshua Pehrson vs. Derek Penman
12:30 p.m. — Nathan Ouimette vs. Tanner Alder
12:40 p.m. — Ryan Barber vs. John Reid