Minnesota Golf Association

Bryn Goes Wire-to-Wire to Collect First Amateur Win at Twin Cities Championship

June 28, 2020

By Nick Hunter
  HASTINGS, Minn. – Practically everyone who's ever picked up a golf club has had a brief glimpse of one day playing on a professional tour. But for many professional players, the reality of traveling from tournament to tournament, logging hundreds of miles, depending on meager and intermittent winnings to scrape out a living becomes too much of a burden.
Turning professional not long after his collegiate career ended at the University of Northern Iowa in 2013, it took Yarri Bryn nearly four years of bouncing around mini tours to realize that the life of a pro golfer wasn’t the dream he was searching for.
“I tried to work and play, which in hindsight probably wasn’t the best idea. I played well here and there and cashed a few checks. But I have a lot of interests and it was hard to be singularly focused on golf and doing that day in and day out. I have a hard time sticking to just one thing,” Bryn said Sunday. “Now I look forward to hitting a couple balls or playing once in a while—it’s more relaxing than anything.
“I’m trying to have fun playing golf. Doing the mini tour stuff for a while and donating a lot of money, it gets a little less fun. I’m glad to be playing recreationally now.”
Bryn, who played varsity golf for six seasons at Minneapolis South High School, fired a 6-under 66 on Saturday to open the 29th Twin Cities Championship in familiar surroundings at Theodore Wirth Golf Course before posting a 2-over 74 on the final day when the setting shifted to Hastings Golf Club Sunday, earning a three-stroke victory over Ralph Baxley to claim his first state championship.
“I’m pretty comfortable at [Theodore Wirth]; I’ve played there a lot growing up, so I know where I can hit driver, which makes it easier to get it down there,” Bryn said following his win Sunday. “I haven’t been playing that much or that well, so it was kind of a surprise to play well for once.
“I played a little more conservative today because I knew I had a few shots there and tried to scratch out par when I could. The greens were bumpy in some places, but I also didn’t have a good handle on where to hit it—I didn’t really remember the golf course.”
On Sunday, the 29-year-old Bryn carded an early bogey at the par-4 fourth, but bounced right back by getting up-and-down from a greenside bunker at the seventh, rolling in a 5-footer for birdie as he avoided trouble for a majority of the round.
A bogey at the par-4 eighth put Bryn at 5-under for the championship, but a steady final 10 holes, despite a final bogey at the 17th, put Bryn in the clubhouse with a three-stroke victory at 4-under 140.
“A win means I’m halfway decent,” Bryn joked. “It’s not as big of a stage as some other state events, but there are some good players here and it’s a good warmup. I don’t have any complaints. There’s still a little rust, but it makes me want to go play a little more.
“A lot of people have played a lot more than I have—I haven’t played a lot of tournament golf recently, so I just wanted to go up and hit the ball and not think about it too much.”
Regaining his amateur status for the 2019 season, Bryn played in just one event, finishing tied for 42nd at the Minnesota Golf Association State Amateur Championship at Somerby Golf Club.
Opening the Minnesota Public Golf Association Mid Public Links Championship two shots of the lead at Valleywood Golf Course two weeks ago, Bryn stumbled on the final day, shooting an 83 to finish tied for 10th. He’s claimed a handful of top-5 finishes since 2007, dating back to his junior golf days.
Reflecting on his days as a professional player, Bryn said not only has his game changed, so has his attitude and self-awareness on the golf course.
“I think you see it in a lot of people who try to play for money. You focus really hard but when you take a step back, you have a little more maturity in your game. I try to let it ride a little better than I used to and try to remember that I’m just playing golf and not working.”
Baxley, who claimed a runner-up finish at the MPGA Mid Public Links earlier this month, carded a 1-over 73 to begin the tournament at Theodore Wirth on Saturday before posting the tournament’s only score below par at Hastings Golf Club Sunday, a 2-under 70.
Carding a birdie at the third during his final round, Baxley pulled to within three of Bryn with an eagle at the par-5 10th. Digging himself into a hole with bogeys at 11 and 13, Baxley fought back with a birdie at the 16th and would finish the championship three shots back at 1-under 143.
Caleb VanArragon, the 2018 MGA Junior Boys’ Player of the Year, carded a final-round 74 Sunday to finish in third place at 3-over 147.
6,740 YARDS, PAR 72
1. Yarri Bryn, Bunker Hills GC, 66-74—140
2. Ralph Baxley, Bunker Hills GC, 73-70—143
3. Caleb VanArragon, Bunker Hills GC, 73-74—147
T4. Kane Bauer, Hastings GC, 72-76—148  
T4. Carter Doose, LeSueur CC, 69-79—148
6. Benjamin Hicks, Chaska TC, 70-79—149
7. Theo Frentzos, Links at Northfork, 81-73—154
8. Connor Humble, Southern Hills GC, 75-80—155
9. Mitchell Holm, Chaska TC, 76-80—156
T10. Tim Gordon, Elk River GC, 79-78—157  
T10. Tye Moe, Mendakota CC, 73-84—157
For complete tournament results go to:  https://ddz5qbrxrbzp.cloudfront.net/uploads/email/file/254661/2020_Twin_Cities_Men_s_Championship_Final_Leaderboard.pdf 


6550 York Avenue South, Suite 211 • Edina, MN 55435 • (952) 927-4643 • (800) 642-4405 • Fax: (952) 927-9642
© 2014 Minnesota Golf Association. All Rights Reserved