17-year-old wins Santa Barbara City Golf Championship

Santa Barbara City Golf Championship

San Marcos’ Niels Andersen watches his tee shot on the final hole of the 2015 Santa Barbara City Golf Championship. (Presidio Sports Photos)


When Niels Anderson made it to the 18th tee on Monday, the Santa Barbara City Golf Championship was far from being decided. Brandon Gama and Brandon Bauman were breathing down his back, but the young 17-year-old delivered one of his two birdies of the round to win the title by two strokes at Santa Barbara Golf Club.

Andersen, a San Marcos High School senior, shot an even-par 71 on the final day of the three-day tournament to hold off Gama and Bauman, who both shot into contention with matching 65s. Andersen’s winning three-round total was 204.

Niels Andersen following his SB City Championship victory.

Niels Andersen following his SB City Championship victory.

The final hole could have gone either way as Andersen clung to a one-stroke advantage. A clutch 60-yard wedge shot over a sand trap and onto the green landed near the pin and his backspin kept it there for an easy tournament-winning birdie putt.

“I was never thinking about my opponents,” Andersen said. “I was thinking about the shot I was about to hit. The usual, classic ‘one shot at a time’ thing.”

Andersen birdied the first and 18th holes on Monday and added an eagle on hole No. 9. He said his caddie, Devon Uyesaka, helped keep any feeling of pressure away by keeping the mood light.

He avoided trouble down the stretch to hold on. His last stumble was a double-bogey on No. 12.

“I was just trying to get pars,” Andersen said. “I saw Brandon was at 4-under on the 17th tee. I decided to just get it on the fairway and on the green two putt.”

Tyler Ley and Brandon Crane were playing in the final group with Andersen. Ley was one stroke back of Andersen to start the final round and Crane two strokes back.

Crane ended up in sixth with a three-round score of 209. Ley shared ninth place with Nicholas Dallas and William R. Moffly at 212.

Andersen is a member of the San Marcos golf team that just won a CIF Central Division title and has qualified for the upcoming SCGA Championship.

Gama is a former tournament winner who has now finished in second three times.

“This tournament is so much fun because it seems like a lot of people from the community come out to really just watch the tournament on this Memorial weekend,” Gama said. “I get a lot of support. This is where I grew up and this place is special for me, it’s where I learned how to play golf.”

Gama and Andersen played in the same group on Saturday and said he was glad the teenager was able to taste victory. He receives $750 in store credit at the Golf Club’s pro shop.

“I know what it’s like to win this tournament so I’m really happy for him,” Gama said.

Andersen took the lead on Saturday with a 65. He began with a birdie on Sunday and never trailed throughout the day.

Manny Manzone, who led after Day 1, finished tied for 12th.

Other flight winners were Dana Barat (Palmer Flight), Mark Sowlakis (Hogan Flight), Clayton Hunt (Nicklaus Flight), Bill D Craft (Trevino Flight), Micheal Henrickson (Snead Flight), and Brian R Milner (Player Flight).

1 Niels Andersen 68-65-71–204
2 Brandon B Gama 69-72-65–206
3 Brandon Bauman 68-74-65–207
4 Dennis Waites 70-71-67–208
4 Mitchell Martin 72-70-66–208
6 Brandon J Crane 69-69-71–209
7 Cody P Hall 68-70-73–211
7 Max Alcorn 69-74-68–211
9 Nicholas Dallas 70-71-71–212
9 Tyler Ley 69-68-75–212
9 William R Moffly 67-73-72–212
12 Emanuele Manzone 65-75-73–213
12 Hunter D Robinson 70-72-71–213
14 Joshua Shou 68-71-75–214
15 Brett T Patton 70-70-75–215
15 James T Camaione 71-72-72–215
15 Nicholas Engelhardt 68-74-73–215
15 Pe’a Hill 71-72-72–215
19 Chad Visser 72-70-74–216
19 Christian Sanders71-71-74–216
19 Jake Ledbetter 66-77-73–216
19 John Pate 72-71-73–216
23 Grady Smith 70-73-74–217
24 Amol Mahal 70-72-77–219

1 Dana Barat 71-77-74–222
2 David C Elkins 75-74-77–226
3 Nick Williams 72-79-76–227
4 Kelly Foy 75-74-81–230
5 Danny Carroll 73-78-82–233
6 Michael Kemp 77-82-76–235
7 Clement Liou 81-78-80–239

1 Mark Sowlakis 74-78-74–226
T2 Orlando Hernandez 77-80-76–233
Paul Dargan 84-73-76–233
T4 Duane Koyano 79-77-80–236
Josh M. Bowie 78-79-79–236
6 Scott Nagel 73-81-84–238
7 Yoshinaga K Sim 76-81-83–240

1 Clayton Hunt 77-78-78–233
2 Sean Barbosa 76-79-85–240
3 Keith Cotarelo 80-84-77–241
4 David Gronsky 80-79-83–242
5 Brett A Bollman 84-80-83–247
T6 Billy E Carleton 82-81-86–249
Virgil Kyle 75-80-94–249
8 Timothy Nelson 81-83-90–254

1 Bill D Craft 80-85-79–244
2 Richard A Gonzales 78-86-81–245
3 Jerry Anderson 86-78-83–247
4 Ewoud H Tsas 83-82-84–249
5 Cevin Doppmann 84-81-86–251
6 John T Somerville 80-85-87–252

1 Micheal Henrickson 82-78-84–244
2 Joseph Morin 83-78-86–247
3 Joseph Ortega 81-86-85–252

1 Brian R Milner 83-90-87–260
2 Danny L Thomas 88-90-90–268
3 Robert Lopez 92-89-94–275