FARMINGTON — Blake Tomlinson is just 19 years old, but most golfers of his caliber would have played in a few Men’s State Amateurs by now. However, Tomlinson, because of conflicts with Junior World and other events, is playing in his first-ever State Am this year, and after two days is off to a terrific start.
All the University of Utah sophomore-to-be has done so far is shoot the lowest two-day medal score in the long history of the State Amateur with a pair of 64s for a two-day total of 128, breaking the previous record of 130.
Tomlinson added an 8-under-par 64 at Oakridge Country Club Tuesday to his 7-under-par 64 the day before at Davis Park Golf Course to easily win medalist honors at the 120th State Amateur, the longest continuing golf tournament in the world.
Tomlinson beat out two other teenagers for medalist honors as 18-year-old Cole Ponich, an Oakridge regular, who played for Davis High and will be playing for BYU next fall, and Jayce Frampton, a 19-year-old from Centerville, who plays for Dixie State College, both came in at 132.
“I’m ready for a long week,” said Tomlinson, whose work is just beginning, as he faces the possibility of six rounds of match play totaling approximately 126 holes over the next four days as long as he keeps winning.
Tomlinson is from Salt Lake, but he used to play as a youngster at Oakridge, where his grandparents were members. So he feels comfortable with the course, where he didn’t make a single bogey on Tuesday.
Starting on hole No. 10, he made five birdies on the back nine at 11, 13, 14, 16 and 17. Then he eagled No. 1 and made a birdie at No. 4.
“I’ve been working on my wedges a lot,” he said of his ability to get the ball close several times in his first two rounds.
He’ll start off as the No. 1 seed in match play and meet Southern Utah golfer Ali Hameed Wednesday morning. He feels confident in match play, having won the 64-player Utah Junior State Amateur a year ago.
“Winning that last year has given me a lot of confidence going into this week,” he said. “I’m just going to take it hole by hole each day, not force anything and not give up.”
Tomlinson just completed his freshman season for the University of Utah, where he was the team’s top player, earning a spot in the NCAA regionals. However, he didn’t make it to the main NCAA event and last week he struggled at the Salt Lake City Amateur.
“I played a lot of golf up until then and just got mentally fatigued, I guess,” he said. But now he feels refreshed and ready to play several rounds this week.
Two of Tomlinson’s Ute teammates finished high in medal play as Kyler Dunkle came in at 133 and Mitchell Schow was sixth overall at 135.
“It’s good to have some Utes up at the top,” he said.
After Wednesday’s first round, the field will be cut to 32 …read more
Source:: Deseret News – Sports News