Defending County Am champ Weber knows he faces stiff challenge

Defending champion Joe Weber headlines a modern-day record Championship Flight field into the 27th annual La Crosse County Men's Amateur Golf Championships as presented by Pepsi-Cola of La Crosse this weekend.
Saturday's opening 18 rounds begin at The Golf Club at Cedar Creek in Onalaska. Sunday's final round is at Drugan's Castle Mound Country Club in Holmen.
A total of 42 Championship Flight players are entered, the most since 48 competed in 2012.
Weber is certainly among good company with the other seven top finishers  from 2016 also returning.
"This year's field is loaded, I mean really loaded," said Bob Lamb, longtime tournament director. These guys can play. If you're a golf fan and you enjoy the very best amateur golf in western Wisconsin, you certainly want to be here both days."
Weber, a dentist in West Salem, captured the coveted 2016 County Amateur Men's Golf Championship, but not without another climactic ending to the historic tournament which began in 1932.
Weber stepped up to the ninth tee with a commanding seven-shot lead in the final round at Castle Mound on Sunday.
With only 10 holes to play, Weber appeared a "shoo-in" for his first monogrammed County Am sport coat, $500 gift certificate, Championship Flight plaque and traveling trophy.
However, Weber's smiles turned to looks of deep concern beginning with a double bogey on the ninth hole. He still had a five-shot cushion entering the final nine holes, but three straight bogeys saw his lead evaporate to only two shots. By the time he reached the 17th tee, he was one shot behind 20-year-old Drew Schroeder of Holmen.
Yet, Weber saved his best for last. While Schroeder's bogey on the 18th hole dropped him into a tie with Weber, it was short-lived as Weber hit a hybrid club off the tee, followed by the "shot of the tournament," an 8-iron from 174 yards to no more than four feet past the cup on the tricky 18th green. His putt hit the back of the cup and dropped in, sealing his first County Am title.
Weber, who posted a 2-under par 69 at The Golf Club at Cedar Creek in Onalaska on Saturday, finished with a 3-over 75 at Castle Mound for a 144, 36-hole total. Schroeder, a member of the Viterbo University men's golf team, shot the best round of the day with 70, and finished at 145.
Weber, a member at the La Crosse Country Club in Onalaska, became the first Country Club player to win the title since 1996 when Eric Haug won his second County Am championship.
Weber, obviously, is looking forward to this weekend's 36-hole event, but acknowledges a repeat title won't be easy.
"I haven't been playing well. It's life stuff," he said. "We have a child getting older and another one on the way. I'm not as sharp as last year."
However, Weber was quick to add that if he plays his own game, he will be OK.
Cedar Creek is more adaptable to Weber's game, he said, adding he just feels more comfortable there rather than at Drugan's.
"Nine has always been a nemesis for me," he said of Castle Mound's ninth hole, previously a par-4 with a severe dogleg to the right. However, it was changed to a par-3 this spring.
"I'm going to be very excited about not hitting a tee shot there," said Weber, who has yet to play either tournament course this year.
"For some reason, Cedar hits my eye better. It's a harder golf course that suits me a little better," he said.
Weber knows all too well the players who will challenge him. Guys like seven-time champion Paul Williamson, Schroeder, Josh Dirks, Jake Dunn, Tom McClintock, Tyler Church, Ben Skogen, Connor Frawley, James DeBoer, in addition to past champs Eric Haug, Michael Drugan and Brian Banasik. The list goes on and on.
You can bet Weber is also looking over his shoulder at the weather forecast.
"I'll be interested to see what the weather is. If there's no rain, the scores will be lower because it will we cooler," he said. "When it's hotter, it's more difficult to score.
"If the rain holds off, it may take 3 or 4 under to win. Otherwise, maybe it will be a little over," he added. "But there are so many good players. There are six or more guys who can shoot 66 or lower."
A total of 95 players entered this year, four more than a year ago.

2017 LA CROSSE COUNTY MEN'S GOLF CHAMPIONSHIP        
AS PRESENTED BY PEPSI-COLA OF LA CROSSE        
        
Saturday's First-Round Pairings        
At The Golf Club at Cedar Creek        
In Onalaska, WI        
(Par-36-35-71)        
        
Men's Fourth Flight - 10th Tee        
7 a.m.
Thomas Johnson
Ronald Puestow    
        
7:09 a.m.
Bob Roers
Marty Gora    
        
7:18 a.m.        
Jim Dolesy    
Jack Glennie    
Rich Schultz    
        
7:27 a.m.        
Steve Crogan    
John Nichols    
Joel LaPlount    
        
7:36 a.m.        
Tom Morris    
Leon McNutt    
Michael DeYoe    
        
Men's Third Flight - First Tee        
7 a.m.        
Marv Davis    
Scott Hackworth    
        
7:09 a.m.        
Greg Espenes    
Monte Jacobson    
        
7:18 a.m.        
Keith Seidel    
Daron Schmitz    
Tim Ratajski    
        
7:27 a.m.        
Bob Sciborski    
Robert Schoen    
Daniel M. Breeden    

7:36 a.m.        
Jeff Osgood    
Dan Leis    
Andy Senn    
        
Men's Second Flight - 10th Tee        
11:12 a.m.        
Jeremiah Shimshak    
Tony Friedl    
        
11:21 a.m.        
Thomas Grapes    
Jeff Meyer    

11:30 a.m.        
Scott Swanson    
Derek Canady    
Joseph Nguyen    

11:39 a.m.        
Tom Desjarlais    
Paul Franke    
Tim Peterson    

11:48 a.m.        
Scott Emerich    
Roy Brock    
Randy Blank    

Men's First Flight - 10th Tee        
11:57 a.m.        
Jon Strangstalien    
Jim Jenkins    
        
12:06 p.m.        
Rahn Pischke    
Trevor Schultz    
Jim Socha    

12:15 p.m.        
Jason Brockmeyer    
Terry Thienes    
Matt Euler    

12:24 p.m.        
Jeff Pigorsch    
Kevin Groth    
Randy Olson    

12:33 p.m.        
Tony DeRosa    
Jim Nelson    
Tom Wilson    
        
Men's Championship Flight - First Tee        
10:36 a.m.        
Brett Schwanke    
Dayne Malesytcki    
Joe Loomis    
        
10:45 a.m.        
Benjamin Korger    
Blaine    Mason    
Zach Schams    

10:54 a.m.        
Eric Haug    
Ricky Speltz    
Mitch Gault    

11:03 a.m.        
Kelly DeMarino    
Larry Peterson    
Rick Stewart    

11:12 a.m.        
Jon Wilson    
Bruce Lindseth    
Bill Feehan    

11:21 a.m.        
Marcus Williamson    
Casey Bablitch    
Mike Bistodeau    

11:30 a.m.        
William Sibenaller    
Cody Dirks    
Nick Anderson    

11:39 a.m.        
Brian Banasik    
Andy Tomashek    
Eric Olson    
        
11:48 a.m.        
Scott Skogen    
Montana Stewart    
Joel Preeshl    

11:57 a.m.        
Drew Schroeder    
Paul Williamson    
Michael Drugan    

12:06 p.m.        
Nate Smith    
Bennett Hutson    
Tony Roberts    

12:15 p.m.        
Connor Frawley    
James DeBoer    
Nick Tomlinson    

12:24 p.m.        
Tom McClintock    
Josh Dirks    
Jake Dunn    

12:33 p.m.        
Tyler Church    
Ben Skogen    
Joe Weber    






 
 


McClintock wins Kwik Trip Seniors County Amateur

ONALASKA, WI - Tom McClintock felt great despite nursing a sore back if that makes any sense.
McClintock was in party mood after notching his very first La Crosse County Amateur Golf Championship title on Saturday. His initial victory was in the annual Kwik Trip Seniors County Amateur at The Golf Club at Cedar Creek in Onalaska.
McClintock, nicknamed "Mac," tries to make it two in a row next weekend, but more about that later. He was savoring his first-ever County Am title while sipping on a cool drink shortly after his sparkling 2-under par 69.
Finally," he said with a wide grin.
McClintock a perennial contender for the Men's County Am crown, lost to four-time Seniors champion Paul Williamson in a sudden death playoff last year. Williamson, nicknamed "Willie," was nipping at McClintock's heels once again on Saturday, but McClintock withstood the challenge to pocket a $275 gift card along with a large plaque and Seniors County Am traveling trophy.
I took 15 years off from golf to race seriously and I don't regret it. I just need to get stronger mentally," he said.
McClintock, a regular in both the Seniors and Men's County Amateurs for the last few years, took a big step mentally on the 10th hole on Saturday. He was 4-under par after the front nine. Williamson, one of his playing partners, was even par. It changed in the blink of an eye. McClintock hooked his tee shot out of bounds and finished with a bogey 5. Williamson jarred a 70-yard wedge from the fairway for an eagle 2. Suddenly, a four-shot lead was now one stroke with eight to play.
"I thought, here we go. Just like last year. "I'm going to get Willied again," McClintock said. "Actually, that was the key to my victory. I just stopped and regrouped mentally."
Actually, it wasn't quite that easy. Williamson birdied the par-3, 11th and watched McClintock bogey. It was game on the rest of the way. McClintock regained the lead on the 12th hole when Williamson bogeyed. However, in typical Williamson fashion, he knocked his tee shot less than two feet from the cup on the par-3, 14th hole for a tap-in birdie. The match was deadlocked through the 16th before Williamson double bogeyed the 17th. The two-stroke lead was all McClintock needed entering the 18th.
"Is anyone else close?" McClintock asked a tournament official who was following the group.
The tournament official checked with scoring officials in the clubhouse and told McClintock no one was better than 5-over par.
McClintock breathed a big sigh of relief, knocked his approach shot to the middle of the green and two-putted for victory.
The first to remove his cap and shake his hand was Williamson, a longtime friend.
"I'm happy for Mac," said Williamson, the all-time record holder in the long, storied County Amateur dating back to 1932.
Williamson owns seven Men's County Am titles and four Seniors crowns. However, you can bet Williamson, who also has a bad back, is already gearing up for the grueling, 36-hole Men's County Am next weekend. So is McClintock.
"I'm taking two days off from golf. It's rehab now," said McClintock. "I'll play Tuesday, Thursday and Friday or maybe just Tuesday and Thursday. It all depends on my back. It's all about getting better and how I feel about myself."
When asked if he could become the first player to win the Seniors and Men's titles in the same year, McClintock laughed and responded with his five favorites to win.
Ben Skogen, Tyler Church, Joe Weber, Josh Dirks... and of course Willie," he said. "I just want to be in the background where no one knows how I'm doing."

Paul Bruha defeated Randy Blank in a two-hole, sudden death playoff for the First Flight title. Bruha, who won his second straight First Flight title, and Blank finished regulation play with 78 each. Marty Gora captured Second Flight honors with 87, while Lloyd Payne won the new Super Seniors Flight for players 70 and above with a low net 62.

2017 KWIK TRIP SENIORS COUNTY AMATEUR GOLF CHAMPIONSHIP                   

Saturday July 29, 2017
The Golf Club at Cedar Creek (Par 71)                                     

CHAMPIONSHIP FLIGHT
Tom McClintock 32-37 69                
Paul Williamson 36-36 72                
Pete Kohnert 39-36 75                
Joe Loomis 39-37 76                
Joe Hightower 37-39 76                
Mike Bistodeau 40-36 76                
Jim Socha 41-36 77                
Michael Drugan 40-37 77                
Bruce Lindseth 41-37 78                
Steve Franke 40-39 79                
Chris Weiss 40-39 79                
Kelly DeMarino 39-40 79                
Jim Jenkins 41-39 80                
Larry Peterson 39-41 80                
Bruce Simones 43-37 80                
Bill Feehan 47-33 80                
Jim DeBoer 40-42 82                
Terry Thienes  38-45 83                
Tom Wilson 42-41 83                
Rahn Pischke 42-42 84                
Rick Stewart 47-38 85                                   

FIRST FLIGHT
* Paul Bruha 39-39 78                 
Randy Blank 38-40 78                
Robert Schoen 42-43 85                
Randy Breidel 50-40 90                
Robert Burns 46-44 90                
Dan Leis 41-50 91                
Tony Friedl 47-44 91                
James Freng 48-44 92                
Herb Becker 47-48 95                
Bob Sciborski 49-48 97                
Thomas Grapes 51-46 97                
Chuck Moore DQ
Joseph Nguyen WD                                    

SECOND FLIGHT                   
Marty Gora 47-40 87                
Bob Roers 48-40 88                
Leon McNutt 43-46 89                
Scott Hackworth 47-42 89                
Rich Schultz 44-46 90                
Edward Przytarski 46-44 90                
Felix Fernandes 44-47 91                
Steve Crogan 45-50 95                
Thomas Johnson 46-51 97                
Marv Davis 51-48 99                
Greg Espenes 50-49 99                
Monte Jacobson 47-57 104                
Ronald Puestow 50-58 108                                   

SUPER SENIORS (age 70 and above low net)              
Lloyd Payne 42-42 84 62               
Jack Glennie 44-43 87 68               
Bob Luce 52-49 101 74               
Ted Knudson 49-49 98 76               
Tony Raymond 44-49 93 77               
Robert McLoone 50-49 99 79               
Bill Burke 50-52 102 80               
Paul Taylor 51-50 101 82               
David M. Seymour 54-52 106 89   

* - won on second hole of sudden death

Rohe eyes second Women's County Am title

Onalaska's Monica Rohe, a recent graduate of Upper Iowa University, seeks her second title in three years in the La Crosse County Women's Amateur Golf Championship as presented by Pepsi-Cola Bottling of La Crosse on Saturday.
Rohe won the 2015 title before losing to Sheridan McCoy in a playoff last year at The Golf Club at Cedar Creek in Onalaska.
Barb Hegenbarth returns to defend her title in First Flight, while Jean Marie Weissenberger, who won Second Flight last year, joins Hegenbarth in the last group in First Flight this year.
Nineteen players entered this year, although one player withdrew because of injury after entries closed.
Tee times begin at 7:30 a.m.

2017 LA CROSSE COUNTY WOMEN'S AMATEUR GOLF CHAMPIONSHIP

AS PRESENTED BY PEPSI-COLA OF LA CROSSE            

Saturday July 29, 2017                
The Golf Club at Cedar Creek                
Onalaska, WI
                
SECOND FLIGHT                
7:32 A.M.                
Sue Mathison            
Sue Rieland            

7:40 A.M.                
Vicky Helfrich            
Sher Olson            
Linda Payne            

7:48 A.M                
Diane C. Pintz            
Sue Moore            
Terry Ziegelbauer            

FIRST FIGHT                
7:56 A.M.                
Lynda Johnson            
Julie Espenes            
Cathi Baus            

8:04 A.M                
Jean Marie Weissenberger            
Krista Drewiske            
Barb Hegenbarth            

CHAMPIONSHIP FLIGHT                
8:12 A.M.                
Lynn Lenz            
Courtney Bergum            

8:20 A.M.                
Sydney Hubbard            
Monica Rohe            


Onalaska's Hubbard withstands nerves to win first Women's County Am

ONALASKA, WI - "I was just so nervous the last hole. I realized I actually had a chance to win."
Sydney Hubbard, 18, won the first huge tournament of her budding career - the 2017 La Crosse County Women's Amateur Golf Championship at The Golf Club at Cedar Creek in Onalaska on Saturday. It wasn't easy as she nearly blew a four-shot lead on the final hole, but still finished with an impressive 76.
I ended with a quad (quadruple bogey), but I was able to hold on," said Hubbard, 18, a recent Onalaska High School graduate who is attending the University of Sioux Falls on a scholarship this fall.
Courtney Bergum finished one stroke behind Hubbard, who was pleased she was able to hold on despite the incredible pressure of playing in the most prestigious women's tournament in the Coulee Region.
"On 18, I was behind a tree and was 128 yards away," said Hubbard reliving the hole. I hit it short into the bunker, but we couldn't find it. I hit my next ball over the green, then got back on and finally ended with an 8."
While it may not have been a pretty finish, Hubbard said she will certainly return in 2018 to try and defend her title.
"Oh, yes. I'll be back, she said with a big smile.
Incidentally, she won a $150 gift certificate and large Championship Flight plaque.
Barb Hegenbarth won Women's First Flight with 87, while Diane C. Pintz captured the Second Flight title with 91. It was Pintz's second women's title.
"I was really excited after my first one," she said. "I had 2-3 drinks and went home early. Not this year! I'm going to enjoy it."

2017 LA CROSSE COUNTY WOMEN'S AMATEUR GOLF CHAMPIONSHIP                    

Saturday July 29, 2017                    
The Golf Club at Cedar Creek (Par 71)                    
                    
CHAMPIONSHIP FLIGHT                    
Sydney Hubbard 36-40 76        
Courtney Bergum 40-37 77        
Monica Rohe    44-39 83        
Lynn Lenz 39-48 87        

FIRST FLIGHT                    
Barb Hegenbarth 43-44 87        
Julie Espenes 45-44 89        
Jean Marie Weissenberger 47-43 90        
Krista Drewiske 48-45 93        
Cathi Baus 45-50 95        
Lynda Johnson 49-50 99        

SECOND FLIGHT                    
Diane C. Pintz 46-45 91        
Linda Payne    48-47 95        
Sue Moore 46-49 95        
Terry Ziegelbauer 47-49 96        
Sue Rieland    53-48 101        
Sher Olson 54-56 110        
Vicky Helfrich 58-53 111        
Sue Mathison 61-71 132        
Shirley Olson WD        


Williamson gets nod for 5th Kwik Trip Seniors County Am crown

Paul Williamson is the odds-on favorite to win the annual Kwik Trip La Crosse County Seniors Amateur Golf Championship on Saturday.
Williamson already has four Seniors titles under his belt, including last year's sudden death victory over Tom McClintock. Wlliamson also is the all-time Men's champion with seven titles.
This year's 18-hole tournament is also at The Golf Club at Cedar Creek in Onalaska, home courses for both Williamson and McClintock.
According to a poll at boblamboutdoors.com, Williamson has a 32 percent chance to win. Joe Loomis, three-time champ, has a 12 percent chance as well as two-time winner Michael Drugan. McClintock is seeking his first Seniors title and is a 9 percent pick as well as Bruce Simones with one victory. Rahn Pischke, who lost to Simones in sudden death in 2014, is a 6 percent favorite.
Other contenders for the title are three-time champion Pete Kohnert and two-time titlists Mike Bistodeau and Jim DeBoer, Sr.
The tournament is usually held at Forest Hills Golf Course in La Crosse, but was moved to Cedar Creek due to major flood damage at Forest Hills.
However, Dave Cornelius and tournament director Bob Lamb have shortened the yardage at Cedar Creek to accommodate all flights. Rather than playing at 5,220 yards at Forest, it will only play 20 yards longer, or 5,240 yards at Cedar Creek for the new Super Seniors Flight for players 70 and above. Tees will play at 5,910 yards at Cedar Creek for Seniors Championship, First and Second Flights compared to 5,729 yards at Forest Hills.

2017 KWIK TRIP SENIORS COUNTY AMATEUR GOLF CHAMPIONSHIP                
                
Saturday July 29, 2017                
The Golf Club at Cedar Creek                
Onalaska, WI                 
                
SUPER SENIORS  FLIGHT            
10:20 A.M.                
Bob Luce            
Bill Burke            
Ted Knudson            
                
10:28 A.M.                
Lloyd Payne            
Robert McLoone            
Paul Taylor            
                
10:36 A.M.                
Jack Glennie            
David M. Seymour            
Tony Raymond            
                
SECOND FLIGHT                
10:44 A.M.                
Thomas Johnson            
Ronald Puestow            
                
10:52 A.M                
Bob Roers            
Marty Gora            
                
11 A.M.                
Rich Schultz            
Felix Fernandes            
Steve Crogan            
                
11:08 A.M.                
Leon McNutt            
Edward Przytarski            
Marv Davis             
                
11:16 A.M.                
Monte Jacobson            
Greg Espenes            
Scott Hackworth            
                
FIRST FLIGHT                
11:24 A.M.                
Robert Schoen            
Bob Sciborski            
                
11:32 A.M                
Dan Leis            
Thomas Grapes            
                
11:40 A.M.                
Chuck Moore            
Randy Breidel            
Tony Friedl            
                
11:48 A.M.                
Joseph Nguyen            
James Freng            
Randy Blank            
                
11:56 A.M.                
Robert Burns            
Paul Bruha            
Herb Becker            
                
CHAMPIONSHIP FLIGHT                
12:04 P.M.                
Jim Jenkins            
Steve Franke            
Jim Socha            
                
12:12 P.M.                
Rahn Pischke            
Terry Thienes            
Chris Weiss            
                
12:20 P.M.                
Larry Peterson            
Joe Loomis            
Tom Wilson            
                
12:28 P.M.                
Kelly DeMarino            
Rick Stewart            
Joe Hightower            
                
12:36 P.M.                
Bruce Lindseth            
Bruce Simones            
Bill Feehan            
                
12:44 P.M.                
Mike Bistodeau            
Jim DeBoer            
Pete Kohnert            
                
12:52 P.M.                
Michael Drugan            
Tom McClintock            
Paul Williamson