CHICAGO DISTRICT GOLF ASSOCIATIONFor Everyone Who Plays the Game
|For Immediate Release||July 19, 2018|
|HAHN STAVES OFF FIELD TO CLAIM ILLINOIS STATE AMATEUR TITLE |
|Thursday, July 19, 2018 - |
BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Over the course of his golf career, Jordan Hahn has stood over tens of thousands of putts. He had never been more nervous for one than he was on the 18th green Thursday at Bloomington Country Club.
“That’s probably the toughest one,” Hahn said of the six-foot bender standing between him and victory in the Illinois State Amateur Championship, one year after he lost a four-shot final-round lead en route to a runner-up finish. “That wasn’t an easy putt.”
The Spring Grove native calmly rolled in the clincher to save par and finish the 72-hole championship at 3-under-par 277, one shot better than Bloomington’s Rob Wuethrich.
Earlier in the day, it looked as if Hahn would not need dramatics at the last to emerge victorious. The University of Wisconsin rising senior entered the 36-hole final day with a three-stroke advantage and built his lead to six shots heading to the back nine of his fourth round. However, bogeys on Nos. 10, 15 and 17, combined with two birdies over the final five holes from Wuethrich, resulted in Hahn needing par on No. 18 to win the championship.
At 6-feet-8-inches tall, Hahn had previously utilized his prodigious length with driver off the tee to notch birdies on the 346-yard finisher in his first three rounds. Nursing a one-shot lead, Hahn changed course and teed off with a 4-iron, but his shot leaked into the trees right of the fairway. His punch-out settled just short of the green, leaving Hahn needing an up-and-down to clinch the title.
“I was on the fringe and the leave I gave was not good,” Hahn recalled. “I didn’t want to leave it short of the hole, because I knew I had a downhill slider. Unfortunately, that’s where I left it, but my caddie and buddy Pete Kuhl gave me a good read. I was just committed to that line and poured it in.”
Elation for Hahn meant disappointment for Wuethrich, who finished as runner up in just his second State Am appearance. However, the soon-to-be sophomore at Illinois Wesleyan University was ultimately pleased with his status as the highest finisher of the 13 Bloomington natives in the field.
“It means a lot, with all the good golfers that we have in Bloomington-Normal, to come out here and put up a good score and play well,” Wuethrich said. “It means a lot to me to do it for Bloomington-Normal.”
Glenview native Charlie Nikitas, the first-round leader, finished with a 3-under 67 to claim sole possession of third place at 1-under overall. Rockford’s Daniel Gorman, 50-year-old Bloomington native Mike Henry and Illinois State University golfer Trent Wallace tied for fourth at 1-over.
After visiting Bloomington CC for a record eighth time, next year’s championship will visit another familiar site, as Wheaton’s Cantigny Golf will host for the fifth time. The low 20 and ties from this year will be exempt in to the 2019 event.
|Chicago District Golf Association|
The Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) is the regional governing body for amateur golf in Illinois and parts of three other states. The CDGA services more than 400 clubs and 80,000 individual golfers. Golfers receive member offers, a USGA Handicap Index® and competitive playing opportunities, while clubs receive USGA rating and measuring services, turfgrass diagnostics and educational seminars. Midwest Golf House and its Three-Hole Sunshine Course are home to the CDGA Foundation, which annually serves more than 1,000 individuals with special needs and wounded veterans while also bringing playing opportunities to youth golfers. Founded on March 18, 1914, the CDGA is one of the largest and oldest golf associations in the United States.