Erik Hanson of Kirkland, Wash. capped off an impressive week with a 3 and 2 victory over Scott Johnson of Richland, Wash. in the final match to the win the 40th Pacific Northwest Master-40 Amateur Championship, held at Meadow Springs Country Club in Richland, Wash.
Hanson, the No. 2 seed, had built a quick 4-up lead after eight holes before Johnson stopped the bleeding. With birdies on holes 14 and 15, Johnson cut the lead to just a two-hole deficit with three to play. Hanson then birdied the 560-yard par-5 16th hole to close out the match.
“Meadow Springs is a great course,” Hanson said. “I’ve played it before, in the Northwest Open. It’s got a lot of tricky holes and great green complexes. The layout goes uphill and downhill, so you have to play it smart and play for par because it’s a bogey-making golf course. That was my approach in these matches; make as many pars as possible, and put pressure on opponents to have to make birdies once I got a lead.”
This is the third time Hanson has won this championship, having previously won the title in 2007 and 2010.
“Winning these championships means a whole lot to all of us amateur players,” Hanson said afterward. “We love playing in these events, and our goal is to play in as many as we can, to try to make the Hudson Cup team.”
Hanson is continuing his good play this summer, having earlier qualified for the U.S. Senior Open, and two weeks ago won the Seattle Amateur after shooting a course record 62 at Jackson Park GC in that event’s first round. Hanson is a former MLB pitcher for the Seattle Mariners.
To make it into today’s final match, Johnson had defeated Tom Brandes in yesterday’s semifinal match. Brandes was the runner-up in last year’s championship and the 2014 PNGA Senior Men’s Player of the Year.
The championship was conducted by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA). The championship called for 18 holes of stroke play qualifying which seeded the competitors into match play. All matches were contested over 18 holes and were played at scratch.
The Pacific Northwest Master-40 is one of 15 major, regional, amateur championships for men, women, juniors, and seniors conducted annually by the PNGA throughout the Northwest.