John Sand

John Sand

John Sand wins epic duel in GH Men’s Amateur

Coming from behind on the final two holes, former Hoquiam High standout John Sand won a scintillating duel from Aberdeen native Eric Hagen to capture the Grays Harbor Men’s Amateur golf tournament last weekend at Grays Harbor Country Club.

Birdieing the 17th hole and making a long par putt on the 18th, Sand shot a pair of five-under-par 65s for a 36-hole total of 130. That was one stroke better than Hagen, who matched the course record of 61 (previously set by Jon Parker Jr.) in the opening round and closed with a 70.

Paired together in the final round, Sand and Hagen — longtime friends and teammates on the Denver University golf team — staged a memorable head-to-head battle.

Sand wiped out a two-shot deficit with a three-shot swing on the 17th hole. He stuffed his approach shot for a tap-in birdie while Hagen was three-putting for a double-bogey six.

Both players missed the green with their tee shots on the long par-3 18th. A potential playoff loomed when Hagen chipped close to the pin and Sand’s bunker shot left him with approximately a 25-foot par attempt. But Sand canned the putt for the title.

Hagen’s father, Wayne “Tiger” Hagen, took net honors with 133. Bryan Dierick won the senior division with a 151 total.

The final standings:

Gross: John Sand 130, Eric Hagen 131, Brandon Peterson 143, Travis Bossio 143.

Net: Wayne Hagen 133, Steve Solan 134, Shawn Dierick 139, Steve Natwick 140, Lonny Hatton 140, Ron Russell 141.

Senior: Bryan Dierick 151, Ed Klein 157.