Van Galder first-round leader

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Mike Johnson/Special to the Gazette
July 24, 2010
— Sam Van Galder didn’t mince words when describing his second-round struggles at Glen Erin Golf Club in last year’s Men’s City Golf Tournament.

“It was a little embarrassing,” Van Galder admitted on Friday after firing a 3-under-par 69 at Riverside Golf Course in the first round of this year’s City Tournament.

Van Galder’s 69 has him tied atop the Championship Flight with three-time champion Matt Behm, but Van Galder—the 2007 champion—knows that things can change quickly if the winds are howling for today’s second round at Glen Erin like they were last year.

Van Galder was also atop the leaderboard in last year’s City Tournament after the first round at Riverside before blowing up with an 86 at Glen Erin. He recovered to make an early run in the final round at the Janesville Country Club but fell well short of Behm, who cruised to a seven-shot win.

Unlike last year, though, Van Galder feels he’s better equipped to deal with Glen Erin if the conditions become harsh today.

“I just feel like I’m a different player this year,” Van Galder said. “I don’t overreact at everything. I’m just more of a steady golfer.”

Albeit a confident one.

“He sent me a text message (after Friday’s round) and said he was coming to get me this year,” Behm said of the pair’s good-natured competition.

But Van Galder and Behm certainly aren’t the only horses in this race.

Mark Thomsen is alone in third, one shot back after a

2-under 70. Charlie Roherty, Michael Kletzien, Sean Halverson and 2002 winner Ryan Coffey form a quartet two shots back at 1-under 71, while seven-time champion Chris Pastore is only three back after an even-par 72.

Meanwhile, five-time winner Jeff Bruegger and King Clark are certainly in the hunt, four shots back at 1-over 73.

“It should be fun,” Behm said. “There’s a good chunk of guys at 71 that have game. I’m not going to sit back and relax.”

The weather was a major concern on Friday after Thursday’s torrential rains soaked the course. But according to Riverside assistant pro Matt Ellis, the course was ready to go by early Friday morning.

“This golf course drains really well, and of course our maintenance guys are really great,” Ellis said. “So they were out early just making sure everything was good, and there really weren’t any problems.”

Except the thunder and lightning that arrived Friday morning when the lead groups were set to tee off at 7 a.m.

“I didn’t think we were actually going to play,” Behm said.

After a two-hour delay, though, the tournament finally got underway in course conditions that everyone thought were superb considering the rainfall. Some rules modifications were needed given the standing water in the bunkers, and the golfers were allowed to play lift, clean and place in the fairways.

Van Galder played the front nine in a steady rain but managed to card a 1-under 35, including an eagle at the par-5 sixth when he hit an 8-iron to tap-in range. He nearly made a hole-in-one at the par-3 12th for a tap-in birdie and finished his round with four birdies, three bogeys and the eagle.

Behm started on the back nine, playing in less rain but more heat than Van Galder. He birdied all four par 5s and the par-4 16th, with bogeys at the par-3 15th and the par-4 ninth, his final hole of the day, the two pockmarks on his card.

Now the tournament shifts to Glen Erin, where par will be a good score. And just breaking 80 could be a challenge if the wind and pin placements are similar to last year.

“That place just tests my patience like nobody’s business,” Behm said. “It will definitely be a test, no matter what.”

At Riverside Golf Course (Par 72)


First-Round Results

San Van Galder 69

Matt Behm 69

Mark Thomsen 70

Ryan Coffey 71

Sean Halverson 71

Michael Kletzien 71

Charlie Roherty 71

Chris Pastore 72

Jeff Bruegger 73

King Clark 73

Brad Bohlman 75

Robert Kennedy 75

Doug Sheridan 75

Braddy Bohlman 75

Ryne Clatworthy 76

Aaron Coffey 77

Blair Schmeiser 77

Gilbert Enriquez 78

Rob Ackerman 78

Jay Fox 78

Greg Ruef 79

James Stubbendick 80

Jon Phillips 80

Steve Babcock 82

Jacob Downing 83

Taylor Johnson 83

Bill Kennedy 83

Rich Fugate 85

Steve Bysted 89


First-Round Results

Curt Goodwick 73

Mike Reid 74

Bob Woodrum 77

Rick Berry 77

Evan Diece 78

Derek Cooper 78

Gary Plglaze Jr. 78

Aaron Leeder 79

Miguel Cepeda 79

Matt Kempfer 79

Gary Neumueller 80

Al Herbst 80

Jeff Farrell 81

Dave DeGarmo 81

Steve Anderson 81

Shannon Dooley 81

Mike Johnson 81

Kevin Riley 83

Ethan Rau 83

Brent Corey 84

Jake Hassinger 85

Brian Dunk 85

John Zimmerman 86

Jim Mead 86


First-Round Results

Mike Mead 71

Randy Krueger 77

Tom Collins 77

Gary Merk 78

David Bitter 78

Ben DeWitt 79

Jon Moldenhauer 79

Brian Rogula 81

Greg Mullen 81

Efren Blanca 82

Dave Herr 82

Bob Compton 82

Jeff DeGarmo 84

Jim Crawford 84

Kevin Mickelson 85

Scott Schroeder 89

Steve Thurner 89

Eric Hoium 91

Ryan Hutchinson 93

Brian Garey 95

Greg Squire 97

Jason Leffel 100


First-Round Results

Todd Sitter 78

Tom Noll 78

Philip Konkol 79

Norman Bogdan 79

Jose Perez 81

Paul Burkholder 81

Matthew Ruppe 81

Tim Millis 81

Scott Shadel 81

Jace Fenton 82

Michael Spiegler 82

Thomas Vogt 83

Steve Thompson 83

Shawn Uschan 83

Ryan Luebke 84

Brad Schumacher 84

Brian Thorson 84

Pete Clough 85

Richard Moore 85

Cliff Wakefield 86

Nathan Punzel 86

Dan Hermanson 89

Dean Hendrickson 89

Dave Langowski 92

Ron Pumilia 93

Michael Reid II 94

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