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5 AREA PLAYERS PASS FIRST STAGE OF OPEN QUALIFYING
Five area players took a step closer to playing in the 2019 U.S. Open.
Competing in the local qualifying Monday (May 13) at Sara Bay Country, Seath Lauer of Lakewood Ranch, Erik Souchak and Michael Visacki, both of Sarasota, mastered the Donald Ross designed course well enough to advance to the 36-hole sectional qualifying.
Lauer and Kevin Roy of Tampa tied for second at 69, one stroke back of medalist Joe Ferreira , a 35-year-od club pro at Gator Creek Golf Club in Sarasota.
Souchak and Visacki each posted rounds of 70 to tie for fourth. Souchak, the grandson of former PGA Tour standout Mike Souchak, recently won the City of Sarasota Men’s Amateur Championship.
Sebastian Mark of Bradenton missed by one stroke to force a playoff for the final qualifying spot by shooting a one-under 71.
Danny Walker of Lakewood Ranch, a member of the web.com tour, shot 72.
Sarasota’s Scott Dunlap, a veteran of the PGA and Champions Tour, soared to a 76. It was his first tournament round since undergoing wrist surgery after last year’s Schwab Cup.
On May 6, Phil Knowles of Bradenton scorched the Sawgrass Country Club course with a 67 for medalist honors.
On May 9 at Eagle Creek, Dave Hronek of Port Charlotte was one of six qualifiers to shoot 68, but he lost in a playoff for the fifth and final qualifying berth. He is the first alternate.
The only Florida sectional qualifying will be held at Streamsong in central Florida.
The 2019 U.S. Open will be played next month at Pebble Beach.
The Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club will host a field of 84 South Florida PGA Junior Tour Members as they compete in the South Florida Junior Open, one of five Junior Majors