Write-Up provided by: Rick Pledl
(Additional quote provided by Wisconsin.Golf & Gary D’Amato)
The short game.
It always seems to come down to the short game when Wisconsin’s biggest golf tournaments are held at Ozaukee CC in Mequon, a woodsy 100-year-old golf course known its slick, contoured putting surfaces.
Those green complexes went a long way toward determining another champion this week at Ozaukee CC, where Daniel Mazziotta won the Wisconsin State Open in a three-hole sudden-death playoff Wednesday evening after the sun had already set.
Mazziotta, a 33-year-old caddie at Sand Valley Resort, defeated former Marquette star Hunter Eichhorn with a two-putt par on the third extra hole. Eichhorn’s par putt from 8 feet lipped out, finally ending the tournament.
“I love playing summertime golf in Wisconsin,” Mazziotta said while holding the trophy.
The 102nd Wisconsin State Open, sponsored by the Suter Ward Group at Morgan Stanley, finally ended in near-dark a few minutes after 8 o’clock Wednesday, with the sun long having disappeared below the tree line. Mazziotta won with crickets singing and mosquitos beginning to make their presence known on what surely would have been the last hole played – win lose or draw.
After the first two playoff holes, Mazziotta and Eichhorn had to consider the possibility of coming back Thursday morning to finish, so they decided to play that third, and final, hole.
Mazziotta, who lives in Wisconsin Rapids, could be heard saying he had a caddie gig to get back to Thursday as the extra holes unfolded, so it was clear he didn’t want to come back the next morning.
Mazziotta also made a clutch putt on the second playoff hole, the par-4 11th hole at Ozaukee. After Eichhorn tapped in for par on the 11th, Mazziotta rolled in a breaking 7-footer for his par to keep the playoff going.
Mazziotta was one the few players who actually made some long putts Wednesday during the State Open’s traditional 36-hole final day.
In the afternoon round he dropped a downhill 45-footer for eagle on the par-5 fifth hole – the sort of putt many players convert into a three-putt or worse at Ozaukee. And he made one from about 35 feet for birdie on the par-4 12th.
Eichhorn, a native of Carney, Mich., bolted to the front thanks to his terrific round of 62 in the morning round, which was only the second 62 ever recorded in the State Open. Afterward, Eichhorn admitted the course was softer in the morning, which helped him get that low score. But it should be noted that while Eichhorn was shooting 62, Mazziotta was also going low with a third-round 65 to keep pace.
Eichhorn entered the final round Wednesday afternoon with a three-stroke lead on Mazziotta. The players traded the lead on the back nine before Mazziotta made another clutch putt on the final hole of regulation, also from about 7 feet.
“I wasn’t too proud of the way I struck it or even the way I putted it as a whole in the (afternoon) round,” Mazziotta said, “but I was proud of how gritty I was.”
For the week, Mazziotta shot 70-68-65-72 to finish at 5-under-par 275. Eichhorn shot 68-70-62-75–275.
Cameron Huss of Kenosha finished third and was the low amateur. Huss, a member of the University of Wisconsin golf team, shot 73-68-66-70 to finish at 277, two strokes out of the playoff.
Germantown professional Austin Kendziorski recorded rounds 66-68-74-70–278 to finish fourth. And there was a five-way tie for fifth place at 279.
Mazziotta, who has played on the Korn Ferry Tour and others, and hopes to get back to tour golf, won the first-place check for $12,000.
Eichhorn, who turned pro in June shortly after his sterling career at MU ended, has his sights set on Korn Ferry Qualifying this fall. After losing the playoff, and lamenting his poor driving in the final round, he said he wouldn’t get too down on himself.
Eichhorn said he never hit driver in the final round until the playoff, choosing instead to play 3-wood in the hopes of finding more fairways. However, the plan just didn’t work out as planned.
“It’s disappointing to come up short, but I just have a few things to clean up,” Eichhorn said. “The game is close, so I’m not going to hang my head about this at all because I played some really good golf.”
2022 Suter Ward Group at Morgan Stanley Wisconsin State Open Results
The Wisconsin PGA would like to express our appreciation to the Suter Ward Group at Morgan Stanley for their terrific support of the Wisconsin State Open. It was the sixth straight season that the financial advisory agency has been aboard as the title sponsor of the event. With their help the Wisconsin PGA was able to once again offer a purse in excess of $70,000
The WPGA would also like to thank our supporting partners, TaylorMade Golf and Sentry. With their important backing the WPGA was able to once again roll out a first class event. For TaylorMade Golf 2022 marked the 20th straight year that they have partnered with the Wisconsin PGA on the State Open.
A big thank you also goes out to everyone at Ozaukee CC. Their membership and staff embraced the event from day one. They gladly rolled out the red carpet and also showcased their course in a very fine manner.
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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