Three members of the 2002 National Champion Minnesota men's golf team will participate in the PGA Nationwide Tour's Scholarship America Showdown at the Somerby Golf Club in Byron, Minn. Justin Smith fired a 66 in the qualifying yesterday at Hastings Country Club and David Morgan carded a 67 to secure two of the 15 spots available. The third member of that squad participating this weekend is Matt Anderson who is playing on a sponsor's exemption.
The Scholarship America Showdown, an event on the Nationwide Tour, has a $550,000 purse and will be held for the first time at Somerby having moved from Troy Burne Golf Club in Hudson, Wis. The event will be shown live on The Golf Channel with the winner taking home $99,000.
Smith has earned $53,748.83 on the Hooters Tour this season with a victory at the Touchstone Energy Open on June 25 in Greenville, N.C. He is currently third on the Hooters Tour Money List. Anderson has earned more than $15,000 during his second season on the Hooters Tour and ranks 32nd on the money list this year.
Somerby is a John Fought/Tom Lehman design that plays to a par of 72 and stretches 7,209 yards. The course meanders through trees and wetlands, and over a variety of creeks spread throughout the rolling property. The course is located just 8 miles from downtown Rochester and an hour south of the Twin Cities area. Somerby was voted one of the 10 Best New Private Courses in America by Golf Digest.
Other former Gophers who failed to qualify were Ben Greve, Simon Nash, Josh Persons and Ryan Paulson. Current Gophers who also failed to qualify were Robbie Kelley, Andy Paulson and Mike Fiedler. The event begins Thursday.