Write Up Provided By: Rick Pledl
Dan Woltman won his third Wisconsin State Open Championship Wednesday evening at North Shore Golf Club in Menasha – his first as a professional – but afterward all he wanted to talk about were the big fish that had previously gotten away.
“A win’s a win,” Woltman said. “It doesn’t matter where you’re playing. I’ve had a lot of close chances in this tournament in the last seven or eight years and it’s been frustrating to not close the door. I was in position a lot of times, and I was in position today, and I just wanted to get off to a good start, which I did.”
Woltman, 31, who lives in Sun Prairie, was able to close out the 98th Wisconsin State Open Championship presented by the Vince Suter Group of Morgan Stanley, and he did it with an impressive ball-striking display, splitting fairway and hitting greens. The result was five-stroke win and the first place $10,000 prize check. He finished the event at 7-under-par 273.
Woltman began the week with rounds of 68-69 on Monday and Tuesday and added another 69 on Wednesday morning. That set up what appeared to be potentially thrilling final round shootout, as Woltman trailed the 54-hole leader, Milwaukee amateur Jack Schultz, by one stroke. The third player in the final threesome was amateur Michael Harris of Brookfield, who began the final round tied with Woltman at 4 under.
But the shootout never materialized because Woltman separated himself from the others early in the final round. Woltman made four birdies in his first seven holes in the final round Wednesday, then added a bunch of pars on the back to win going away. (Woltman was also 4 under on the front nine in the third round on Wednesday morning.)
“Dan had four birdies in the first five holes, so he was playing well,” Schultz said. “I kept his scorecard, and he bogeyed 17, but other than that he played great. It got a little boring for us. There were some claps on the front nine, but then it was dead silence on the back because everyone was making pars.”
Schultz, who played golf at the University of Michigan, had trouble hitting fairways in the final round, which allowed Woltman, a former Wisconsin Badger player, to pass him on the front nine. But Schultz said his difficulties in the finale were the same issues that had plagued him all week long.
“I hit it all over, but I hung in there,” Schultz said of his week at North Shore GC. “That’s the way it went. I played well in the first two rounds, but it was still going the same way. I putted great but couldn’t hit the ball straight.”
Schultz shot 70-66-69-75 and slipped all the way back to a four-way tie for sixth place, although he did record an ace Wednesday morning on the 173-yard par-3 fourth hole.
Harris also shot 75 Wednesday afternoon and fell into a tie for 10th place.
However, Garrett Loomis, a newly turned professional from River Falls, went in the other direction, shooting a closing 68 to move into second place all by himself. Loomis recorded rounds of 69-69-72-68-278 for the week.
Tied for third at 279 were Nick Nelson of Milwaukee (72-70-68-69), Joe DuChateau of Fond du Lac (71-62-77-69) and Thomas Burton of Milwaukee (74-70-65-70). Nelson, who won the 2016 Wisconsin State Amateur at North Shore GC, and DuChateau tied for low amateur honors.
DuChateau entered the third round with the lead after recording that 8-under-par 62 in the second round.
Last year’s champion, Max Hosking of Tucson, Ariz., played well in defense of his title. Hosking went into the final round with a real chance to repeat at 2 under par, three strokes off the lead. But Hosking shot 73 Wednesday afternoon and fell into a tie for 10th place.
Woltman won the 2007 and ’09 Wisconsin State Open titles as an amateur, but just hadn’t gotten the job done as a professional. He was runner-up in both 2010 and ’14, and he finished third in the 2013 and ’16 State Open. With that history in the championship, Woltman said he tried to buckle down and complete the task at hand this time around.
“I played a little more conservative in the (final) round,” Woltman said. “(Fairways and greens) are always the plan, especially when you feel like you have some control of the golf ball. You’re just trying to play aggressive to a conservative line.”
Next up for the Beaver Dam native will be a trip to the Nebraska Open in a few weeks as he’ll look to earn his third State Open win of the year. Just two weeks ago he also claimed the Iowa Open by a convincing six shots. After that venture out west he will tackle the always daunting Web.Com Tour q-school in the fall and look to regain his status on the developmental tour after playing out there in 2017.
The 2019 Morgan Stanley Wisconsin State Open Championship will be held at Geneva National GC in the Lake Geneva area.
The Wisconsin PGA would like to express its appreciation and thank Vince Suter, Financial Advisor and a Senior Vice President at Morgan Stanley for his support of the Wisconsin State Open. The presenting sponsor continues to play a key role in helping elevate the championship to new heights. With his contribution the event was able to offer a $60,000 total purse and a $10,000 first place prize to the the low professional for the second straight season.
The WPGA would also like to thank longtime State Open sponsor, TaylorMade Golf. 2018 marked the 16th straight year that they have partnered with the Wisconsin PGA on the State Open. In addition to their financial support representatives from TaylorMade were once again onsite to play a key role as starters throughout the event.
A big thank you also goes out to the membership and staff at North Shore GC for hosting a great championship. The club opened their doors and welcomed all the participants of the event with open arms. The golf course provided quite the playing field. From lush perfectly maintained fairways to super smooth greens, the course was in fantastic shape. It was terrific showcase for the hidden gem that sits on the edge of Lake Winnebago.
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management, a global leader, provides access to a wide range of products and services to individuals, businesses and institutions, including brokerage and investment advisory services, financial and wealth planning, cash management, lending products and services, insurance, retirement and trust services. Vince Suter, a Family Wealth Advisor is well-positioned to have meaningful conversations about money; to help families set priorities, protect their family enterprise, practice impactful philanthropy and put estate plans in place. He takes great pride in connecting with the next generation to engage them in becoming educated about how family finances affect them. Vince has demonstrated a disciplined, diligent approach to understanding how family circumstances and dynamics can influence and impact short and long-term personal and financial goals. His ability to work with families to develop a framework for their financial future helps them achieve their financial goals.
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