GOLF: Peninsula’s Mitrovich an alternate for the Senior Open

PENINSULA GOLF CLUB’S Mark Mitrovich will serve as an alternate for the 2018 U.S. Senior Open after winning a playoff during a sectional qualifying event held last week at Cedars at Dungeness Golf Course in Sequim.

Mitrovich finished his sectional qualifier round at 1-under-par 71, two strokes back of Phillip Jonas of Surrey, British Columbia, and tied with Blaine’s Keith Henderson for second place.

The longtime former Port Angeles High School golf coach and retired teacher knocked off Henderson in a playoff to earn the first alternate spot.

There were 34 sectional qualifiers held across the country for the U.S. Senior Open, so Mitrovich joins the ranks of those hoping for a qualified player to drop out and open up a spot.

Bill Shea, Cedars at Dungeness Director of Golf, lobbied for his course to host the sectional qualifier.

“I asked [to host] through the Washington State Golf Association somewhat selfishly as I just turned 50 this year,” Shea said.

“We had one like seven years ago or so. They try to rotate the qualifiers around at different courses.”

The United States Golf Association which runs the tournament says that “alternates in order of qualifying scores will be allowed for qualifiers unable to compete in the Championship.”

Shea said he had conversations with tournament officials about the alternate selection process and said there are other factors that are considered.

“Part of it has to do with how big the field size is at the sectional qualifiers and how many players move on. We had 51 players here and one advanced to the Open. Other courses may have had 100 players and two automatic qualifiers, so the odds may help [Mitrovich].

“And sometimes geography is factored in. Being that this event is in Colorado and it’s not incredibly far to travel there from Washington, that could help.

“I hope Mark gets in. That would be an incredible story. He’s just a tremendous golfer and loves the game.”

The 2018 U.S. Senior Open will be played at the Broadmoor East Course in Colorado Springs, Colo, from June 28-July 1.

The USGA accepted a total of 2,738 entries from golfers in 48 states, and the District of Columbia, as well as 27 foreign countries for the 2018 championship.

Discover Discovery Bay

Discovery Bay Golf Course near Port Townsend is running a 20 percent off green fees special for rounds beginning between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. until Sunday. Players just need to mention they heard or saw about the special to receive it.

Beyond the special, Discovery Bay head pro Jeff Kent said there are “plenty of ways to save at Disco Bay.”

The course offers punch cards for green fees, cart use and range balls and players receive 12 of all of the above for the price of 10 outings.

Tuesday’s are a two-for-one special, buy one green fee and the second player is free. Make sure to mention the Tuesday special at check-in.

Discovery Bay also has a $125 Players Club in which golfers receive 20 percent off green fees for an entire year. Year-long memberships are priced at $1,500.

There’s still time to take advantage of June’s status as “Bring Your Kid to the Range Month” at Discovery Bay. All kids 18 and younger receive a free bucket of range balls when accompanied by a paying adult.

Kent offers weekly golf clinics every Tuesday through the season for $10 per session. All sessions start at 3 p.m. and players need to sign up in advance as spots are limited.

The course also has a fully stocked golf shop and Kent said Discovery Bay offerings include New Balance golf shoes, Black Clover, Titleist and Cleveland hats, Datrek and Seahawk golf bags, full sets of clubs as well as wedges and putters, Bag Boy push carts, sunglasses and more.

“We truly are a treasure to be discovered,” Kent said.

McKeever ace

Sequim’s Kip McKeever recorded his third career hole-in-one at Cedars at Dungeness on June 6.

McKeever holed out on the 152-yard par-3 17th hole using his 3-wood and a Callaway golf ball.

The shot was witnessed by Bill Berry of Sequim.

Nice shooting, Kip!

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