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From sure shots to long shots

Tuesday's local qualifying features a range of abilities as golfers strive to gain position for the Southern Oregon

There was no shortage of accomplishments as qualifying kicked off at the 73rd annual Southern Oregon Golf Tournament Tuesday at Rogue Valley Country Club.

To wit:

Medford's Keith Valk nailed a hole-in-one on the 180-yard ninth hole, and then nearly aced the 13th. His ball on the latter lipped out after completely circling the hole, witnesses said.

Valk shot a 1-under-par 71 to pace the junior-senior division, one stroke ahead of Buck Brigham ' whose 72 was a career-best ' and another in front of Dave Boals.

Medford's Dan Dixon showed that senior division players are no slouch as he tied for the best round of the day, a 2-under par 70.

Ashland's Marty Morland eagled the 352-yard, par-4 17th, using a pitching wedge to hole out from 125 yards.

Morland shot a respectable 1-over par 73 but finished last in his group. Chris Daggitt, just three months removed from North Medford High, registered the best score of the day in the men's regular division with a 70, while Talent's Doug Engle and Rick Dimick of San Diego each carded 71s.

No one could remember the last time a foursome came in with such impressive qualifying numbers.

Shoot a 73 and finish last in your group ' heck of a deal, Morland said. Good thing we weren't playing for money.

Daggitt staged his own heroics on the 17th, sinking a 30-foot putt from the fringe of the green for birdie that put him under par for the first time in the round.

Emotionally stoked, Daggitt then crushed his drive more than 300 yards up the fairway on the 18th, pitched to within 18 inches of the cup and made birdie for his 70.

Daggitt isn't necessarily looked upon as one of the favorites, if for no other reason than 18-year-old, first-time entrants rarely win the tournament. Kelly Owen was the last to do it, and that was 29 years ago.

But Daggitt, a greens keeper at RVCC, has been playing steady golf since last spring when he finished third at the Southern Oregon Conference district tournament and then helped North Medford take fifth at state.

I was a little nervous walking to the first tee box today but I killed my first drive, made par and then it was just another round, shrugged Daggitt, who shot 73 and 71 during practice rounds last week. I'm here to win this thing. I wouldn't have signed up if I didn't think I could do it.

Daggitt hit only 12 of 18 greens Tuesday but leaned on an unusually strong putting stroke to shoot a good score.

I played really well from 10 feet in ' I salvaged a lot of pars over the first nine holes, Daggitt said. Then I settled down and started to hit some greens.

Former champion Brad Bills and 2001 semifinalist Dave Schoenmann shot even-par 72s to finish two strokes in back of Daggitt, and Bill Cox had a 74.

Valk, meanwhile, used a 6-iron to record the fourth hole-in-one of his career.

Had he made a second ace during the same round, Valk would have set a record at RVCC. But his shot on 13 lipped out and then rolled about 6 feet from the cup. Valk missed that putt, settling for a par on the hole.

I've got no complaints ' 71 is a good round for me, Valk said.

And 70 is a good round for Dixon, who used a superb short game to tie Daggitt for the lowest score of the day.

I got up and down three times to save par, said the 56-year-old Dixon, a used-car dealer who finished runner-up in the senior division last year. My chipping and putting were excellent.

Women and out-of-town golfers qualify today in the nation's largest single-site, match-play tournament, with match play to begin Thursday.

Tuesday's Results

REGULAR MEN

Chris Daggitt 70, Rick Dimick 71, Doug Engle 71, David Schoenmann 72, Brad Bills 72, Marty Morlan 73, Bill Cox 74, Eric Austad 75, Justin Wise 75, Scott Tuttle 76, Todd Couch 76, Jerry Anderson 76, David Kaplan 76.

Kevin Dixon 77, Doug Olson 77, Kelly Owen 77, Glen Clark 77, Eric Ford 77, Bret Breeze 78, Mark DeBoer 79, Bill Maentz 79, Craig Tomlins 79, John Rose 80.

Ralph Wallis 80, Todd Dixon 81, Jeff Barry 81, Dave Smith 81, Brent Barry 82, Chris Campbell 83, Bobby Foote 83, Ben Hinton 83, Greg Jones 83, Dustin Riggs 84, Scott Johnson 84.

Gary Redden 85, Dan Wayman 85, Travis Brink 85, Tony Guiliano 85, Tick Hutchins 85, Mat Miller 85, Matt Finch 85, John Barry 86, Jim Palazzolo 86, Chris Adderson 86, R.J. Glover 86, Bryan Brutke 86, Paul Chitwood 86.

Ken Lindbloom Jr 87, Zack Osborn 87, Craig Fox 87, Fritz Schuler 87, Tony Nieto 87, Rich Warner 87, Norman Veronneau 87, Scott Reed 88, David Ruegg 88, Mitch Parsons 88, Brian Schmitz 88.

Keith Dierkes 89, Mark Lauranie 89, Ron Moore 90, Tom Jones 90, Keith Lallo 91, Steven Grove 91, Russ Batzer 91, Matt Smith 91, Scott Irving 91, Greg Jacobs 91.

Chris Bradley 92, Jim Garrison 93, Russell Evans 93, Keith Steinkamp 93, Dennis Richards 93, Scott rd 93, David Rowland 94, Kerry Curtis 94, Jay Christensen 94, Bobby Jones 95, Donn Webb 95, Jason Owen 95.

Curtis Wagoner 96, Dan Fowler 96, Tom Hamlin 97, Cary Preston 98, Alan Cartwright 98, Mike Fischer 99, Steve Lytle 99, Dan O'Connor 99, Tom Willis 99, Winston Tucker 101, Tom Maulding 104, Bob Dumilieu 107, David Casebier 108.

JUNIOR-SENIOR MEN

Keith Valk 71, Buck Brigham 72, David Boals 73, Dave Wittkopf 75, Gary Glass 75, Kelly Rasmussen 77, Bob Dickey 77, Bob Cox 78, Mike Derryberry 78, Brian Adolph 78, Craig Galpern 78, John Johnson 78, David Street 78.

David Orr 79, Don Pinkham 79, Pat Moore 80, Scott McLean 80, David Timmins 80, Bill Shevlin 81, Randy Loyd 81, Fred Johannsen 81, Mark Weiss 82, Terry Anderson 82, Bob George 82.

Mark Eisenstein 83, Doug Hartley 83, Scott Ashpole 83, Jim Botsford 84, Bob Capsey 85, Glenn Kilroy 85, Michael Susi 85, Jerry Quast 86, Steve Robertson 87, David Thorndike 87.

Shane Thurston 89, Sid DeBoer 89, Scott Weaver 90, Jim Cox 91, Jerry Johnson 91, Del Nickols 91, Randy Hall 92, Wayne VanWey 93, Mark Clarke 93, Richard Dent 93.

Les Cracraft 94, Larry Boeck 94, Mike Kirkpatrick 95, Steve Watkins 95, Manava Siliga 96, Tom Mayer 96, J.J. Jones 97, Craig Prewitt 99, Bo Mitchell 99, Ron Burgess 102, Fred Moran 105.

SENIOR MEN

Dan Dixon 70, Dick Swanson 73, Robert Maentz 74, Jim Smith 75, Bob Harrell 75, Jim Quincy 76, Jerry Cochrane 76, Mike Morris 79, Larry Garvin 81, Phil Austin 81, Bill Doss 81, Mike Austin 81, Tom Hamlin 81, Robert Black 81.

Bob Kaczor 82, Ron Dixon 83, Mike Miller 83, Dick Brekke 84, Vance Hickin 84, Ken Bailey 85, Jim Stough 85, Dick Entinger 86, Ron Primasing 86, Lee Ramage 86, Mike Trovato 86, Jon Kruesl 86, Mike Hornbeck 86.

John Humphrey 87, Mike Jantzer 88, Dave Rasmussen 88, Lee Flink 88, Jerry Bramwell 89, Sixto Rodriguez 90, John Anhorn 91, Tom Hitzelberger 91, Bob Salsedo 91, Fred Johnson 92.

Ed Setzler 93, Michael Parsons 94, John Nelson 94, Bob Reed 94, Bert Putney 94, Tal Kaylor 95, Bill Deatherage 95, John Jensen 95, Doug Gardiner 96, Timothy Darland 96, Mike Arant 96.

Fred Ilacqua 97, Wally Hicks 98, Chuck Marrs 98, Jerry Darby 99, John Kilroy 100, Gerald Schatz 100, Jim Huston 100, Roger Franklin 101, Jack Sherman 101, Gary Bendickson 104, Dave Hyatt 106.

Challenged with an unenviable shot, Medford?s Bob Buck deftly slips a chip shot from out of the rough on the 18th hole at Rogue Valley Country Club during Tuesday?s local qualifying. Mail Tribune / Roy Musitelli - Mail Tribune Roy Musitelli