Whitaker Wins PNGA Men's Mid-Amateur

Dan Whitaker of Cle Elum, Wash. shot an even-par 72 in the final round to win the 26th Annual PNGA Men's Mid-Amateur Championship.

The event was held at the 6,954-yard, par-72 Juniper Golf Club in Redmond, Ore. Whitaker's three-day total of 6-under-par 210 gave him a five-shot victory over 2006 PNGA Mid-Amateur champion Tom Brandes of Bellevue, Wash.

After struggling a bit on the front nine with a 3-over 39, Whitaker went into the final nine with a two-shot margin over Brandes. Whitaker then birdied three of the first five holes on the back nine to build a five-shot cushion with only four holes to play. He made pars the rest of the way to finish his incoming nine at 3-under 33.

"It feels good to win again," Whitaker said afterward. "It's been awhile since a victory, especially a victory on this scale. I played Juniper last year in the U.S. Amateur Qualifier and fell in love with it so I'm just really happy I was able to come back here."

Finishing in a tie for third were Kent Brown of Colville, Wash., and Marc Rhoades of Boise, Idaho, who both finished at 2-over par 218. Rounding out the top five another stroke back was Sean Packer of Bonney Lake, Wash.

The PNGA Mid-Amateur is Whitaker's first PNGA championship victory. In 2007 he was one match away from earning an invitation to the 2008 Masters after his runner-up finish at the U.S. Mid-Amateur.

For the full results, visit www.thepnga.org.
The above report is courtesy of the PNGA.