Minnesota Golf Association

Peterson Earns 28th State Victory with Win at MPGA Mid Public Links

June 14, 2020

By Nick Hunter
  APPLE VALLEY, Minn. – Posting the tournament’s only round below par in blustery conditions Sunday, Trent Peterson overcame a slim deficit during the final round by shooting a 1-under par 70 to claim the 16th Minnesota Public Golf Association Mid Public Links Championship at Valleywood Golf Course.
A pair of birdies allowed Peterson to pull away from first-round leader Ralph Baxley late in the final round as Peterson notched his first Mid Public Links Sunday, adding to his total of 28 state championship titles for the 33-year-old.
“This is very satisfying because I’ve never won this before. I lost in a playoff a few years ago [against Michael Christensen at Highland National] and last year I made an eight on a hole and that kind of knocked me out of it,” Peterson said. “I think I’ve got them all—that’s why I wanted it so bad. I can’t think of anything I’m eligible for that I haven’t won now.
“Yesterday I was rusty,” Peterson said of his first competitive round Saturday. “Today I putted much better and made some nice, clutch par putts. I was making everything inside of six feet, which you’re going to be hard to beat if you’re making putts inside of six feet all day.”
Peterson got off to a dreadful start during the opening round Saturday, carding three consecutive bogeys before rattling off four birdies and a pair of bogeys over his final 15 holes to finish one shot back of Baxley at 1-over 73.
Quickly erasing the deficit on the opening hole Sunday, Peterson rolled in a 6-footer to draw even with Baxley before a wayward tee shot at the third led to a bogey. In typical Peterson fashion, he bounced back by rolling in a short birdie putt on the ensuing hole to once again draw even with Baxley.
Peterson, the defending Minnesota Golf Association Men’s Player of the Year, reached the left edge of the par-5 12th in two, getting up-and-down for birdie and would take the lead for good, increasing his lead at the 15th by rolling in another short birdie.
Both Baxley and Peterson went long at the par-4 16th resulting in a pair of bogeys as Peterson would make an inconsequential bogey on the final hole to post a 1-under par 71 to claim a two-stroke victory at even par 142.
“I haven’t played golf too much, so where I finished after Day One, I was very happy. I was right in it,” said Peterson. “It’s not really my home course, but I’ve played it a bunch and I know where to be. These greens were quick and you wanted to keep it below the hole. Downhill, downwind putts were brutal. It’s short—I do well on tight courses because I don’t hit it very far.
“Usually this course is softer and longer greens if you miss, you can get up-and-down pretty easily. It was tough and I told myself to keep it simple. It’s not a long course. I’ve played here a million times and knew I had to be smart and be patient. I took advantage of the easy holes—I birdied all of the par-5’s today.”
Of his 28 state titles, three have now come at his "home course" at Valleywood. Peterson won the 2006 MPGA State Public Links Championship in 2006 before he and partner Olivia Herrick claimed medalist honors at the MGA Mixed Amateur Team Championship in 2016

Also familiar with the confines at Valleywood, Baxley, who graduated at nearby Eastview High School, pieced together another steady round for the second consecutive day by playing his first 14 holes in even par Sunday to keep pace with Peterson.
Back-to-back bogeys at the 15th and 16th holes proved costly for Baxley as he carded a final-round 73 to finish alone in second place at 2-over par 144.
“I was very solid other than just one hole. Should’ve been a green light on 15, making three or four but instead walked off with six. I was hoping to play solid this week and I figured somewhere around even par would be close. I thought I was pretty steady and didn’t make many mistakes.
“I pretty much grew up on this course, but I’ve never seen it play like this—firm, fast and pins where if you were above it, you’ve got no chance. I actually played defensive and I’ve never had to do that before. [Peterson’s] round today was amazing.”
Defending MGA Mid-Amateur champion Justin Burleson, also a longtime Valleywood member, used his experience to his advantage this week, posting a pair of 3-over 74’s to finish in third place, six shots back.
Rick Larson, from Fountain Valley Golf Course, carded 36 Stableford points during Saturday’s opening round and followed it with 28 points during Sunday’s final round to claim the 2020 MPGA Net Public Links Championship, edging Steve Roers by a single point.
Thomas Kennedy, of Fountain Valley Golf Course, claimed medalist honors in the Net Second Flight, while Nick Holler, from Bunker Hills Golf Club, cruised to a 15-point victory in the Net Third Flight Sunday.
6,438 YARDS, PAR 71
1. Trent Peterson, Fountain Valley GC, 72-70—142
2. Ralph Baxley, Bunker Hills GC, 71-73—144
3. Justin Burleson, Fountain Valley GC, 74-74—148
T4. Tyler Obermueller, Emerald Greens GC, 75-74—149  
T4. Steve Whittaker, Pebble Creek GC, 74-75—149
T6. Jonathan Hanner, Baker Nat’l GC, 77-75—152
T6. Kane Bauer, Hastings GC, 75-77—152
T6. Blake Onkka, Bunker Hills GC, 74-78—152
9. Jordan Rykal, Braemar GC, 77-76—153
T10. Nick Gergen, Wirth GC, 79-76—155
T10. Mike Fiedler, University GC, 77-78—155
T10. Bruce Hegland, Cannon GC, 76-79—155
T10. Joel B. Johnson, Links at Northfork, 73-82—155
T10. Yarri Bryn, Bunker Hills GC, 72-83—155
For complete tournament results go to: https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/6421109480917850276

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