California, Kentucky, North Carolina, Florida and Georgia Players Hold Leads
Heading into Tuesday’s Golf Channel Am Tour National Championships Final Round
Newport Beach Resident Jimmy Butler Extends Lead in National Championship Flight to Three
Four Past National Champions Within Striking Distance in Championship Flight
Alpharetta, Ga. Resident Suneil Aggarwal Poised to Defend Jones Flight National Championship with Four-Shot Lead
12-Year-Old Charlie Reiter Recovers From Opening Quintuple Bogey to Shoot 84, T-17 in Palmer Flight
Former MLB Pitcher Mark Mulder Turns in Low Round of the Day with a 1-Under-71, T-17 in Championship Flight
LA QUINTA, Calif., (Sept. 26, 2011) – Storylines are aplenty as the 2011 Golf Channel Am Tour National Championships approaches the final day of competition Tuesday in La Quinta, Calif.
In the Championship Flight (handicap 3.9 or less), Newport Beach, Calif. resident Jimmy Butler tied for the low round of the day Monday with a 1-under-par 71 at the TPC Stadium Course at PGA West. Butler holds a 3-stroke lead heading into Tuesday’s final round, scheduled at PGA West’s Nicklaus Tournament Course. Trailing Butler are four past national champions who are within eight shots of the lead – Jeff Hunter (2006, Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.), Pete DeTemple (2009, Callaway Md.), Ken Larney (2007, 2009 and 2010, Orland Park, Ill.) and Don O’Connor (2010, Carlsbad, Calif.).
Alpharetta, Ga. resident Suneil Aggarwal is looking to go wire-to-wire in the Jones Flight (handicap 16-19.9) and successfully defend his 2010 championship in the same flight. Aggarwal currently holds a four stroke lead.
570 competitors representing 42 U.S. States, Canada and Puerto Rico are competing for national championship honors in the season-ending event for the 2011 Golf Channel Am Tour. The 72-hole national championships, broken up into six flights and taking place on four La Quinta-area golf courses headlined by PGA West, concludes Tuesday.
Former St. Louis Cardinals and Oakland A’s pitcher Mark Mulder continues his climb up the leader board in the championship flight, turning in the low round of the day with a 1-under-par 71 to stand T-17 in the 62-player championship flight. Former New York Yankees pitcher Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez followed up his first two rounds of 82 with an 83 at the Nicklaus Tournament Course at PGA West to sit at T-37 in the 118-player Palmer Flight; and 12-year-old Charlie Reiter Palm Desert, Calif.), the youngest competitor in the field and 2009 national champion, recovered from an opening quintuple-bogey 9 on the first hole to record an 84, finishing T-17 in the Palmer Flight.
Information on the third round leaders in the six flights appears below:
Championship Flight (<3.9)
1 Jimmy Butler Newport Beach, Calif. 72-70-71--213 -3
2 Paul Erdman Erie, Colo. 68-77-71--216 E
3 Jeff Hunter Rancho Santa Fe, Calif. 70-74-73--217 +1
Palmer Flight (4-7.9)
1 Kyle Zeitz Louisville, Ky. 72-74-77--223 +7
2 Patrick Polzin Indian Head Park, Ill. 80-70-78--228 +12
3 Michael Eagle Roseville, Calif. 76-82-73--231 +15
Hogan Flight (8-11.9)
1 Adam Krueger Costa Mesa, Calif. 83-77-79--239 +23
2 Tim Williams McKinney, Texas 78-86-76--240 +24
3 Brook Lister Tulsa, Okla. 84-78-83--245 +29
Sarazen Flight (12-15.9)
1 Ed Lewis Currie, N.C. 85-91-77--253 +37
T2 Bradley Bishop Alden, N.Y. 89-85-80--254 +38
T2 Christopher Nelson Stuart, Fla. 87-84-83--254 +38
Jones Flight (16-19.9)
1 Suneil Aggarwal Alpharetta, Ga. 80-88-89--257 +41
2 Darrin Howard Longview, Texas 95-78-88--261 +45
3 Joseph McWhorter Brooksville, Fla. 89-84-90--263 +47
Snead Flight (20+)
1 Jordan Jones Okeechobee, Fla. 95-84-95--274 +58
2 Bilal Jordan Houston, Texas 91-92-92--275 +59
3 Jason Nogin Oceanside, N.Y. 90-95-91--276 +60
The GCAT National Championships are divided into two events – the Senior National Championship (age 50+), which took place Sept. 18-21, and the Open National Championship, Sept. 24-27. PGA West’s Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course, Greg Norman Course and TPC Stadium Course join La Quinta Resort & Club’s Mountain Course as host golf courses. La Quinta Resort will serve as the tournament headquarters and host resort for the national championships. The courses hosted the Golf Channel Am Tour National Championships in 2009 to rave reviews.
Four players are defending their 2010 national championship titles this week:
- Don O’Connor, Carlsbad, Calif. (Championship Flight)
- Gio Swann, Lauderhill, Fla. (Palmer Flight)
- Mark Perfetuo, Cary, N.C. (Hogan Flight)
- Suneil Aggarwal, Alpharetta, Ga. (Jones Flight)
Also included in the roster of past champions are six golfers from the 2009 GCAT National Championships contested at PGA West, including the youngest competitor in the field: 12-year old Charlie Reiter from Palm Desert, Calif. At 10, Reiter became the youngest competitor in the history of the GCAT to win a national championship, defeating fellow competitors more than twice his age.
As the largest amateur golf tour in North America with more than 5,000 members, the Golf Channel Am Tour is open to the public and provides the most professional tournament experience for players of all ages and abilities, as well as offering unparalleled access to some of the most renowned and challenging golf courses across the country. For more information about the Golf Channel Am Tour National Championships, including scores, visit www.gcamtour.com