Recapping Day One of the Kentucky Match Play Championships
OWENSBORO, KY (July 19, 2021) – The Kentucky Match Play Championships began on Monday with great play and exciting matches kicking off one of the Kentucky Golf Association’s premier tournaments on the right foot. Owensboro Country Club is hosting the competition with Monday’s opening day of play consisting of an 18-hole stroke play qualifier and Round of 16 matches for both the Open Division and Senior Division.
The quality of play within the Open Division was on display early on, as rounds of 68 (-4) from Kevin Waldie, Tadd Switzer and Josh Rhodes were the best qualifying scores. Additionally, each of the top-eight finishers from the Open Division shot 72 (E) or better in their qualifying rounds, dictating how strong the play is within that group.
As the competition shifted to match play, the strong play continued with only two “upsets” coming in the early knockout stages. Jack Bergstrom outlasted Eric King in what was likely the match of the day, with 20 holes needed to determine a victor in this match. Part of that win from Bergstrom included a chip-in for birdie on the 19th hole which extended the match to a 20th hole, which Bergstrom then won to clinch the match. Denver Haddix authored the other instance of a low-seed beating a high-seed in the afternoon, as he defeated Patrick Hibbs 2&1.
Those results help set the course for tomorrow’s play which will begin with quarterfinal matches. Kevin Waldie-Andy Roberts, Jack Bergstrom-George Chandler, Josh Rhodes-Denver Haddix, and Tadd Switzer-Hunter York are the matches that will make up Tuesday morning’s play. Once each of those matches is completed, the semifinal matches will take place Tuesday afternoon before the championship match is contested on Wednesday morning.
In the Senior Division, defending champion Scott Ray was automatically given the 1 seed while Tony Wise established himself as a heavy challenger, shooting 69 (-3) in the stroke play qualifier which was five shots clear of the next best score.
The ensuing Round of 16 matches featured one “upset” with David Horning knocking off the higher-seeded Greg Engle 2 UP. Otherwise, all high-seeded players advanced on Monday afternoon and will continue the tournament under the same schedule that the Open Division is on. Scott Ray-Max Marley, P.J. McDougal-Tid Griffin, David Horning-Brian James, and Tony Wise-Tom Campbell will be the morning quarterfinal matches ahead of afternoon semifinal matches with the championship match held on Wednesday morning.
Golf House Kentucky will continue to have full coverage of the remaining rounds on its Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages. Depending on the status of Wednesday morning’s championship matches, live-streams on Facebook could be available should either match come down to the 18th hole.