Del Rio CC
July 15, 2013
MODESTO – Pace Johnson was the only player to put up two rounds in 60s on Monday at Del Rio CC and because of that the Fresno native ran away with medalist honors in U.S. Amateur Qualifying.
Johnson, who opened his morning 18 holes with an impressive three-under-par 68, improved on that score with an even more impressive five-under-par 66. Johnson’s 134, eight-under-par total put him four shots clear of his nearest competitors, qualifying with ease. In his morning 18 Johnson played steady making birdies on Nos. 4, 7 and 15 to go along with 15 pars and no bogeys. Despite taking two bogeys in the afternoon on Nos. 3 and 17, Johnson made seven birdies on Nos. 1, 5, 7, 11, 12, 14 and 15, to post the best round of the day.
Two players tied for second place and also earned spots in next month’s championship with scores of 138, four-under-par. Shintaro Ban earned his spot with rounds of 70 and 68, while Jimmy Castles fired back-to-back 69s. Ban was one-over-par after his first nine holes, but made birdies coming in on Nos. 14 and 17 to post a red number. Then in the afternoon starting off the No, 10, the San Jose resident continued that momentum opening with a birdie on No. 12, an eagle on No. 15 and birdies on Nos. 1 and 4 to get to five-under-par for the round. Despite taking bogeys on Nos. 5 and 9, Ban still finished with one of the best scores in the afternoon with a three-under-par 68. Castles morning round of two-under-par 69 had included four birdies and two bogeys, while his afternoon round of two-under-par 69 included five birdies and four bogeys.
Finishing alone in fourth place at 140, two-under-par and earning the first alternate was Paul Smith of Turlock. Smith opened with a two-under-par 69 in the morning and posted an even-par 71 in the afternoon. Kurt Kitayama and Taylor Hobin tied for fifth place at 141, one-under-par, and after a sudden-death playoff Hobin earned second alternate.
The U.S. Amateur Championship will take place at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass. August 12-18.