Defending champion Dan Sullivan of Pasadena captured the Southern California Public Links Championship for the third time, but he had to go two extra holes to accomplish the feat.
The 56-year-old Sullivan made a par on the second playoff hole, after sinking a 30-foot birdie putt on the first one, to turn back Alex Resurreccion of Los Angeles on Course No. 1 at Brookside Golf Club in Pasadena.
“Any time you win on a public course tournament it’s, for me, very gratifying,” said Sullivan, who also claimed the title in 2012. “I’m a men’s club member here, I’ve played here for 30-plus years, I played here in high school. I think it’s a great two golf courses and I’m appreciative of the opportunity to play and happy to have won.
“I had a very rough finish so I thought, ‘I guess I’m lucky to be here in the playoff,’ given how poorly I hit the ball on 16 and 17. I’m very happy with how I putted. I had putted really poorly for much of the early part of this year. I took a putting lesson a month and half ago, and it has made a lot of difference in not only how I’ve putted but how I’ve approached practicing my putting.
“So I made a lot of good putts, not just yesterday and today, but also in tournament qualifiers.”
Sullivan, who three days earlier shot 69 at Annandale Golf Club in Pasadena to qualify for the 2023 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship at Sleepy Hollow Country Club in Scarborough, N.Y., next month, held a four-stroke lead in the tournament until making a bogey on the 16th hole and double bogey-6 at No. 17 that allowed Resurreccion to catch him at the finish.
On the first extra hole, Resurreccion seemed about to win when he hit his approach shot inside four feet, but Sullivan sank that 30-foot birdie putt to stay alive.
“It’s almost a straight putt,” said Sullivan, who also won the 2020 Ojai Senior Cup and the 2017 Southern California Golf Association Mid-Amateur Championship among numerous other titles in his career. “I’ve had that putt a number of times for all the years I’ve played out here.
“I knew I had to make it to stay alive. Alex had it in there close to the hole. I think it literally fell in at the last second, so that was a good putt and I was so fortunate that it went in.”
One hole later it was over when Resurreccion three-putted for a bogey.
Sullivan posted a score of 59-70—128, nine-under-par, as par was only 66 in the first round because damage on the No. 2 Course prevented the par-five eighth hole from being played, while Resurreccion finished at 61-68–129.
By winning, Sullivan earned exemptions into the 2024 Southern California Amateur Championship and the 2024 California Amateur Championship at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks.
Brandon McDonough of Santa Monica was third at 61-71—132, followed by Mason Chiu of San Marino at 61-72—133.
Defending champion Scotland Schmidt of San Diego carded a score of 65-69—134 to tie for fifth with Damon Krause of Los Angeles, who finished at 61-73—134, Tongun Lako Lo Sarah of Upland, who also wound up at 61-73—134, and Jia Hu of San Gabriel, who shot 60-74—134.
Drew Miller of Thousand Oaks posted a score of 68-68—136 to tie for ninth with Daniel Kim of Anaheim, who finished at 65-71—136, and Nick Geyer of San Diego, who came in at 63-73—136.
For complete results, visit https://scga-2023scgapubliclinkschampionship.golfgenius.com/pages/3955518