World-Class Field Set to Compete This Week at 24th Sahalee Players Championship
Some of the world’s top college and amateur golfers will battle it out in the 24th Sahalee Players Championship (SPC), to be held July 2-4, 2018 at storied Sahalee Country Club in Sammamish, Wash.
The 72-hole stroke play championship, which is administered by the Pacific Northwest Golf Association (PNGA), will consist of 36 holes played on Monday, July 2, 18 holes on Tuesday, and the final round of 18 holes played on Wednesday, July 4.
The tournament schedule, biographies of each competitor, tee times, pairings and live scoring will be available at www.sahaleeplayerschampionship.com. Spectator admission and parking for the Sahalee Players Championship are free.
The elite international field is led by Australian standout and 2016 U.S. Junior Amateur champion Min Woo Lee, currently ranked No. 6 in the world, according to the World Amateur Golf Rankings (WAGR).
Another player to watch for is 18-year-old high school sensation Cole Hammer, who exploded onto the golf scene by qualifying for the 2015 U.S. Open at Chambers Bay. The University of Texas-bound bomber recently teamed with fellow high school notable Garrett Barber to dominate the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball championship in Florida and is ranked No. 43 in the WAGR.
Sahalee has been the site of the SPC since 1992, and has hosted numerous top-level events in golf, including the 1974 PNGA Men’s Amateur, 1978 Pacific Coast Amateur, 1998 PGA Championship, 2002 WGC-NEC Invitational, 2010 U.S. Senior Open, and 2016 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship.
The Sahalee Players Championship has become a must-play for top amateurs and future stars who’ve gone on to success on the PGA Tour. Dustin Johnson, Kyle Stanley, Bryson DeChambeau, Ryan Moore, Kevin Chappell, Michael and Andrew Putnam, Xander Schauffele and Adam Hadwin are just some of the notables who’ve won or competed in previous SPC’s.
The championship has seen plenty of drama over the years, including the unprecedented 2004 edition that saw Tacoma-native Ryan Moore dominate amateur golf, winning the SPC by five shots with a jaw-dropping 16-under-par 272 for the four rounds during a summer that included victories in the Western Amateur, U.S. Amateur Public Links and U.S. Amateur.
This year’s field includes a number of great storylines. It features 14-year-old Jeevan Sihota of Victoria B.C., a two-time winner of the Callaway World Junior Championships.
One name will be recognizable to football fans as well. Joe Neuheisel, a UCLA standout and son of former University of Washington football coach Rick Neuheisel, returns to the Northwest on a tournament invitation after narrowly missing qualifying for the tournament when he carded five birdies during his qualifying round.
“The Sahalee Players Championship represents our members core set of values and beliefs: supporting championship golf,” says tournament director Kevin White. “This is the closest thing we can do to executing on those core values.”
But it’s not just for the players. White says it’s a chance to expose the entire community to the championship caliber golf he and his fellow members love so much.
“Most people don’t get to see great golf played in person, or even understand what top-level tournament golf looks like,” he says. “This is a way to experience it.”
Beginning in 2000, the SPC and PNGA have hosted major amateur championships in back to back weeks at the beginning of July. Since its inception in 1899, the Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur Championship has had a long and illustrious history as one of the top amateur competitions in the country. Played in the same format as the U.S. Amateur, the 117th PNGA Men’s Amateur will be held at The Home Course in DuPont, Wash. on July 9-14. Notable past champions include Zac Blair (2011), Nick Flanagan (2003), Ben Crane (1997), Jeff Quinney (2000) and Tiger woods (1994). Visit www.thepnga.org or click here for more information.
The PNGA was founded on February 4, 1899. It is a 501c3 charitable, international, amateur golf association dedicated to preserving the true spirit of golf by supporting its allied associations, conducting quality amateur championships, and promoting activities beneficial to golfers in the Pacific Northwest. For more than a century, the Association has been a pioneer in developing competitions and services and its mission has grown and evolved. Today, the PNGA remains committed to being a truly regional organization providing benefits and services to its members and member clubs throughout the Northwest.