James Leow Wins Pacific Coast Amateur Championship
Portland, Ore. – Sun Devil graduate James Leow, shot 69-67-65-68 to win the 55th Pacific Coast Amateur Championship, hosted this week at Columbia Edgewater Country Club in Portland, Ore.
He becomes the first Sun Devil to win the big-time amateur event since Chan Kim in 2009 and joins a list of Sun Devils to win the event that not includes 1996 PCA champion and two-time All-American Scott Johnson, four-time All-American and 1993 NCAA Champion Todd Demsey (1993 PCA champion), four-time All-American Billy Mayfair (1987 and 1988 PCA champion) and 1982 PCA medalist Tony Grimes.
A champion and his trophy ????
— Pacific Coast Amateur (@PacificCoastAm) July 22, 2022
JAMES LEOW SUN DEVIL CAREER NOTES
--Played in 18 collegiate tournaments from 2018-22 (sat the 2020-21 season with injury).
--In 51 career rounds had a 71.00 stroke average with 32 rounds of par or better and 18 rounds in the 60s.
--Won the 2021 Thunderbird Collegiate while playing as an individual.
--Also won the 24-player 2020 Coronado Invitational and shared the 2019 39-player Arizona Medalist Intercollegiate honors with teammate Jino Sohn.
--Earned a Bachelor of Science degree in finance in 222.
--Played in 2022 Palmer Cup and earned Michael Carter "Junior" Memorial Award for the International squad.
JAMES LEOW'S INDIVIDUAL FIRST PLACE COLLEGIATE FINISHES (INCLUDES SHARED)
-James Leow (Jr.) ASU Thunderbird Collegiate (April 15-16, 2022)
-James Leow (So./co-medalist) Coronado Invitational (Mar. 9-10, 2020)/24-player field
-James Leow and Jino Sohn (co-medalists) Arizona Medalist Intercollegiate (Jan. 28-29, 2019)/39 player-field
JAMES LEOW FEATURES/LINKS
--Patience, hard work the key to Leow's win (by Lee Yulin, The Straits Times/June 20, 2021)
--James Leow perseveres, pulls away to win the Southwestern Amateur (by Jordan Perez, AmateurGolf.com/June 19, 2021)
--Sophomore James Leow represents ASU men's golf and his country (by Harry Croton, ASU State Press/Oct. 8, 2019)
--James Leow breaks Singapore's 30-year individual title drought (Singapore StraighTimes/Dec. 6, 2019)
The Pacific Coast Amateur Championship is one of the oldest and most prestigious amateur golf championships in North America. The first tournament was held on the links of San Francisco Golf Club at The Presidio in 1901. After being played until 1911, the Pacific Coast Amateur then ceased to exist, only to be reconstituted at Seattle Golf Club in 1967. Fifteen member Pacific Rim golf associations comprise the Pacific Coast Golf Association.
"I'm really excited to get the win," said Leow. "I've been competing and my golf has been a little up-and-down, but it's always good to play some good golf down the stretch of the week."
Leow entered the day in a tie for first place with Caleb Suratt of Knoxville, Ten., and the two were paired together in the final round along with Sam Choi of Albuquerque, N.M.
Leow and Surratt were neck and neck the entire final round, both players got around the front nine in even par and they stood on the tenth tee tied for the lead. They both made birdie on 10, Leow made birdie on 11, and then Surratt tied it back up with a birdie on 12. They matched pars on 13 and then both birdied No. 14.
On the 15th hole, Surratt made bogey while Leow made par to take a one-shot lead. Then on the 16th hole, Leow gave it right back with a bogey of his own, and the two players were tied again.
On the par-4 17th hole, both players hit the green in regulation. Leow got in for par while Surratt made bogey. This gave Leow a one-up advantage with one to play over Surratt and Sam Choi, who birdied the 17th to climb back in it.
After a perfect tee shot on the par-4 18th, Leow stuck his second shot to four feet and he drained the birdie putt for the win to finish at 15-under for the championship.
"I didn't check my phone, but I had a rough idea of where I was at and where the other two (Surratt and Choi) were at," said Leow. "Down the stretch it was really tight with Sam making a comeback and Caleb chasing after me too, it was a great match and I had so much fun out there."
The 25-year old Leow is the No. 115-ranked player in the world (WAGR) and he just finished up his senior season as a member of the Arizona State University men's golf team, which included winning ASU's Thunderbird Collegiate in April. He played on the International team in the 2022 Palmer Cup and he'll be playing in both the Western Amateur and U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship later this summer.
"This reassures me that I've been practicing hard and I'm moving in the right direction," said Leow. "My next event is the Western Amateur where all the top amateurs in the world are going to play, so it just reassures me that I have what it takes to compete against the best. I can win the Western Amateur, too."