SALT LAKE CITY — For the second straight year, a 17-year-old beat up on Utah’s top professionals and won the Salt Lake City Open golf tournament.
This year, it was Blake Tomlinson, a senior-to-be at Skyline High School, who won the trophy, shooting a 64 Sunday at Bonneville Golf Course to go with his 65 a day earlier at Mountain Dell Golf Course. That was four shots better than fellow amateur Gentry Hicks and five ahead of low pro Tommy Sharp. Last year, it was 17-year-old Rhett Rasmussen who won the tournament.
Tomlinson’s two-day 129 total is believed to be the lowest winning score in the tournament since it switched from match play to medal play in the early 1970s.
“It’s great,” he said. “As a late entry, I’m obviously happy.”
Turns out Tomlinson was the last player to get into the tournament after being on the alternate list. So why didn’t he sign up earlier?
“I was not sure if I wanted to play because I played in so many junior tournaments this summer,” said Tomlinson, who played in Florida last week and in Mexico in late July. “I was a little tired, but said, ‘I might as well play in it — the more experience the better.’”
He was staying at a friend’s house and was awoken Saturday morning by his mother, informing him he was in the tournament with a 1:40 p.m. tee time. He went out and shot a 65 on Mountain Dell’s Lake Course to take the solo lead. Playing on Sunday with pros Todd Tanner and Zach Johnson, who had scores of 66 and 67, respectively, Saturday, didn’t faze Tomlinson in the least.
He started off with a birdie at one, made bogey at No. 2, then came back with birdies at 4, 5, 8, 9, 10 and 12 before chipping in for eagle at No. 16 from 30 feet away. He added a birdie at No. 17 with a 10-footer, and his bogey at No. 18 didn’t hurt him.
Hicks, a senior for the Utah golf team, burned it up on the back nine with a 7-under-par 29, but he came up four shots behind Tomlinson.
The highlight of Sharp’s round was a double-eagle 2 at the 520-yard par-5 No. 16 hole. He was 201 yards out, and his 6-iron shot hit the green and rolled into the cup. It was Sharp’s first double-eagle of his life after getting three holes-in-one, including one at the same tournament.
Sharp, who played in the PGA Championship last month, had just made three bogeys in a row, but canceled those out with one swing. He finished one shot ahead of Tanner. Johnson and amateurs Ryan Brimley and Rasmussen, last year’s winner, tied at 138.
Tomlinson has already committed to play golf for the University of Utah and was wearing a Pac-12 hat during his round. He has a high school meet at Bonneville on Monday and has the option to play in the Utah Open later this month if he chooses.
Scott Brandt won low senior honors with a 138 total, while Bryce Till won A Flight at 144 and Reid Hemming won B Flight at 153.
SALT LAKE CITY OPEN
Bonneville Golf Course
129 – a-Blake Tomlinson (65-64)
133 – Chris Gresh (67-66)
134 – Tommy Sharp (69-65)
135 – Todd Tanner (66-69)
138 – a-Rhett Rasmussen (71-67), a-Ryan Brimley (72-66), Zach Johnson (67-71)
139 – Pete Stone (70-69)
140 – Chris Moody (72-68), a-Jeff Jolley (70-70)
141 – Steve Schneiter (70-71), Casey Fowles (70-71), Tanner Alder (72-69), a-C.J. Lee (71-70)
142 – Dustin Volk (70-72), a-Elijah Turner (72-70), a-Ryan Klassovity (69-73)
143 – Chris Gresh (74-69), Dan Engle (72-71), a-Chase Lansford (69-74)
138 – Scott Brandt (69-69)
140 -- Brad Stone (71-69)
144 – Kim Thompson (72-72)
144 – Bryce Till (73-71)
149 – Rajeev Balasubramonian (73-76)
150 – Rod Zundel (77-73), Oscar Maxfield (74-76)
153 -- Reid Hemming (78-75)
155 – Todd Albiston (77-78)
158 – Rick Gates (74-84)