Minnesota Golf Association

Skogen Leads Pine to Palm Qualifying with 65

August 10, 2016

DETROIT LAKES -- Ben Skogen, a soon-to-be senior at the University of Wisconsin, put together a 6-under-par 65 at Detroit Country Club on Tuesday, and he has a two-stroke lead going into the second -- and final -- day of stroke-play qualifying at the 84th Pine to Palm Golf Tournament. 

The top 64 finishers in the stroke-play portion of the tournament will begin match play on Thursday, and the championship match will be played Sunday afternoon. (Normally, 63 qualifiers and the defending champion make up the match-play field, but the 2015 winner, Alex Kline, turned professional  this spring, shortly after completing his senior season at Grand Canyon University in Phoenix.) 

Skogen shot his 65 the old-fashioned way. Rather than beating up on the Detroit CC par-5's, all of which are easily reachable to the longer hitters (meaning just about anyone in his 20's or 30's), the former Wisconsin state high school champ from Onalaska made three birdies on par-3's and three on par-4's.

Although there is a Badger on top of the leader board, there are lots of Gophers in pursuiit. Two of the three players tied for second at 67 -- Justin Doeden and Peter Jones -- play for Minnesota. The other 67 came from former Roseau star Will Czeh, who now plays for Bemidji State.

Czech made an early bogey, but then went on a rampage and played the last five holes on the front nine in 6 under: eagle-birdie-birdie-birdie-birdie. Doeden won the Krugel Invitational at Mankato GC in July. 

The inter-state Minnesota-Wisconsin rivalry continues at 68. Two of the four players at that number -- Charlie Duensing and  Grady Meyer -- are  Gophers, and a third, Jordan Hahn, is a Badger. Duensing lost to Kline in the 2015 title match. Meyer was the qualifying medalist each of the last two years.  

Yet another two Gophers -- Riley Johnson and Matt Rachey -- are in a nine-way tie for ninth with 69's. Johnson finished second in the Minnesota State Amateur three weeks ago at North Oaks CC, making a birdie on the last hole of regulation play to take a one-stroke lead but then losing to an eagle on the final hole by Alex Uloth. 

Pine to Palm Golf Tournament

At Detroit Country Club

Detroit Lakes

First-round results 

1. Ben Skogen, Onalaska                  65

T2. Will Czeh, Roseau                     67

T2. Justin Doeden, Lakeville             67

T4. Peter Jones, Owatonna               68

T4. Grady Meyer, West Fargo           68

T4. Jordan Hahn, Spring Grove, Ill.   68

T4. Charlie Duensing, Sandy, Utan   68

T4. Joey Wagner, Dickinson, N.D.      68

T9. Tyler Schlotfeldt, Moorhead         69

T9. Thomas Strandemo, Fargo         69

T9. Michael Kosiek, Minnetonka        69

T9. Colton Murphy, Mandan, N.D.     69

T9. Greg Melhus,. West Fargo          69

T9. Matt Rachey, Waconia                69

T9. Riley Johnson, Fargo                 69

T9. Bil Carlson, Fargo                       69

T9. Nick Myhre, Rollette, N.D.          69


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