Dave Yarnes Wins Cleveland Golf Classic
March 6, 2001
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. - - Wind and rain weren't enough to slow Dave Yarnes, as the Oregon State golfer shot an even-par 142 to capture medalist honors at the Cleveland Golf Classic on Tuesday. The Beavers finished third in what was likely the toughest field they will see before the Pacific-10 Championships in April, as five of the 15 teams were ranked 15th or higher.
OSU shot a 592 for the tournament, which was shortened to two rounds, as Monday's second round was cancelled due to rain.
Yarnes fired a gritty a 72 on the par-71 Northranch Country Club in Tuesday's final round to fend off a fierce challenge from ASU's Jin Park and Matt Jones, along with Steve Conway of UCLA, all of whom finished one stroke back at 143.
Yarnes came up with a birdie on the second-to-last hole, then iced the competition with a dead-solid 3-iron to the middle of the green on his final hole, which was a downhill, 200-yard par-3. He two-putted for a par to secure the win, as the golfer that was tied with Yarnes bogied. Yarnes led after Monday's first round when he was the only player to break par, as he carded a 70.
'Over the last four or five holes, I was thinking I could be a stroke or two back,' Yarnes said. 'I just wanted to give myself chances for birdie and see what happens.
'I thought I had to make a birdie,' Yarnes said of the second-to-last hole, which he did birdie. 'After I made it, Coach Ketcham asked if I wanted to know where I stood, and he said I was tied. I thought `Perfect, bonus.'
'It's huge for me, this is probably the biggest accomplishment of my golfing career so far. Hopefully I can do more of the same and build on this. I need to keep improving my game to the point where it becomes second nature.'
Yarnes' previous best was a tie for 37th at the Husky Invitational in Seattle. The junior transfer from Tucson, Ariz., won the Tucson City Amateur and the Pima County Amateur in both 1999 and 2000 prior to coming to OSU. Yarnes became the first OSU golfer to win a tournament since Anthony Arvidson captured the Duck Invitational in Eugene last spring.
'Yarnes was real solid,' Ketcham said. 'I told him on the last hole where he stood, and he came up big. It was a gutty performance.'
'I knew once he got acclimated to this level of competition, he could not only compete, but win tournaments. We've seen it coming in qualifying and recently in tournaments - he's been competing very well.'
Arvidson continued his hot play, as he turned in a 146, which was good for a sixth-place tie at 4-over. The only senior on the team, Arvidson has now run his streak of top-25 finishes to nine, dating back to the U.S. Intercollegiate in the spring of 2000. During that span, he has four top-10 performances to his credit, including a third at the Husky Invitational in the fall.
'Anthony continues to be the backbone of our team,' Ketcham said. 'He's the only senior, and he's our leader - he stands up to a challenge.'
Sophomore transfer Mike Jurgensen came up big for OSU, as he turned in his best performance to date, finishing tied for 27th at 150. The native of Horsholm, Denmark, shot 75 in both rounds.
'This was exactly what we needed at this point,' OSU head coach Mike Ketcham said. 'This is a field very similar to one we'll see at the National Championships. Our team did a very good job for the most part. I can talk all I want about what we need to do to be a top-10 program, but until we go out and do it, it doesn't matter.
'We went to bed (after the first round) knowing we were in the hunt, and that was important,' Ketcham said in reference to coming out and playing strong the second day instead of playing 36 holes on the first day followed by a rainout the next and not getting a chance to compete. 'And while we're happy with third, we want to win the tournament. Hopefully this will be a springboard for the rest of the season and give us confidence going forward.'
Arizona State won a battle with Texas Christian, as the Sun Devils shot a 13-over 581 to give them a six-stroke win.
1. Arizona State 581, 2. TCU 587, 3. Oregon State 296-296--592, 4. Washington 598, 5. Fresno State 600, 5. Minnesota 600, 5. USC 600, 8. New Mexico 603, 9. Houston 606, 10. Oregon 608, 11. Oklahoma 610, 12. Cal-Berkeley 611, 13. UCLA 612, 14. BYU 613, 15. Pepperdine 617.
LOW INDIVIDUAL SCORES (par 71)
1. Dave Yarnes, Oregon State 70-72--142, 2. Jin Park, ASU 71-72--143, 2. Matt Jones, ASU 73-70--143, 2. Steve Conway, UCLA 71-72--143, 5. Bret Guetz, TCU 74-71--145.
OREGON STATE SCORES