Slesinski Wins 71st San Diego County Open Over Rahon on Third Playoff Hole

Michael Slesinski of La Quinta claimed the third pro title of his career on the third playoff hole in the 71st San Diego County Open at Engagic Golf Club at Eastlake in Chula Vista.

The 25-year-old Slesinski, who played at St. Mary’s College in Moraga, made a routine par on the third extra hole after Jack Rahon of Orange hit his tee shot into the water to open the door for Slesinski.

“Coming into the day, I knew I had a chance to win,” said Slesinski, who captured the ECPT Championship at De Knowlton in Quebec, Canada, earlier this year. “I felt great about my game after a second round 64 and had some confidence going into the final round. I hit a great iron shot on No. 17 for a birdie and was able to come away with the victory after that.”

Slesinksi posted a score of 69-64-67—200, 13-under-par, which Rahon equaled at 69-67-64—200.

Alex Chiarella of San Diego shot 69-66-66—201 to tie for third with Harry Rudolph of La Jolla, who finished at 65-66-70—201, while Casey Shaun of Encinitas was fifth at 66-66-70—202, followed by Michael Herrera of Moreno Valley at 67-67-69—203.

Blake Hathcoat of Fresno totaled 66-70-68—204 to tie for seventh with David Kim of Buena Park, who finished at 65-68-71—204, while Troy Kuramarohit of Canoga Park wound up at 69-68-68—205 to tie for ninth place with Jesse Schutte of Florence, Ore., who came in at 68-72-56—205.

Jack Townsend of San Diego, a junior at San Diego State, was low amateur in a tie for 32nd at 70-74-72—216.  

The San Diego County Open was first played in 1929 and was revived this year after a 22-year absence.

Former winners of the San Diego County Open include Sam Snead, Billy Casper, Gene Littler, Phil Rodgers, Kevin Sutherland, Scott Simpson, Jeff Hart, Mac O’Grady, Lennie Clements, Mark Wiebe, Leo Diegel, Paul Runyan, and Scott Piercy, who won the last time the tournament was played in 2001, and Roy Lufts, who won the inaugural event in 1929.  

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