ESTERO, Fla. –
After opening with a one-under par 71 in Monday’s opening round, FGCU men’s golf senior-to-be Dan Mazziotta
closed out play at the U.S. Amateur sectional qualifier by finishing in fifth place out of the 39-player field at Old Corkscrew Golf Club on Tuesday.
Mazziotta fired a 77 in the final round, fighting through tough conditions to finish with a two-day 148 (+4). The par 72, 7,393-yard course yielded four under-par rounds on Monday, but just one in Tuesday’s final round.
The top two finishers from the qualifier advance to the 2010 U.S. Amateur at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash., on August 23-29. The third and fourth place finishers will be the two alternates from the region.
“I wouldn’t say I played bad because I thought I hit it pretty well,” said Mazziotta, who was participating in the fourth U.S. Amateur qualifier of his career. “The course is really challenging and I didn’t make as many putts as I did yesterday. If you leave yourself a 15-20 foot putt, you’re looking at a double or even a triple-breaker. That’s what I did today.”
Mazziotta’s familiarity with Old Corkscrew GC paid off in the opening round where his one-under par 71 tied for the third-best round of the afternoon. Mazziotta played the first U.S. Amateur qualifier of his career in the summer of the 2007 at Old Corkscrew GC. On Tuesday, Mazziotta carded a 39 on the front nine and a 38 on the back nine for his 77.
A native of Fort Myers, Fla., Mazziotta is coming off a strong junior campaign in which he led the team in scoring average (73.1), top-5s (3), top-10s (7) and top-20s (9). He was the only player to participate in all 30 rounds of the 11 tournaments in 2009-10 and was one of three Eagles to claim medalist honors at a tournament when he took home first place at the Mission Inn Fall Intercollegiate.
Mazziotta is one of the four returning players from last year’s club that finished in the top-20 at the 2010 Atlantic Sun Championship in which FGCU finished in second place. Newly-appointed head coach Brent Jensen will lead a group of 10 returners that produced three tournament titles and seven top-5 finishes in 2009-10.