Final round of West Penn Open poised for a shootout
Posted July 25, 2017 - By Mike Dudurich, Freelance writer and host of The Golf Show on 93.7 The Fan Saturday mornings from 7-8 AM. Follow Mike on Twitter @MikeDudurich
2015 West Penn Amateur champion Easton Renwick teeing off on the 15th hole at St. Clair Country Club during the final round
BUTLER – There’s nothing like a shootout in the final round of a big championship.
And that’s exactly what the West Penn Golf Association will have when the final round of the 113th West Penn Open gets started Wednesday morning at Butler Country Club.
Four golfers – Beau Titsworth, Dan Obremski, Easton Renwick and Mike Van Sickle – are tied at the top at three-under par. Eight more are within three shots of the lead, meaning the final 18 holes of this historic event could be wildly unpredictable.
The course played nearly a shot harder than Monday’s round with only six scores in the 60s being posted, while 12 were shot in the first round.
“For me, it’s pretty simple,” said Titsworth, who has posted rounds of 68 and 69. “I have to get off to a good start.”
Titsworth, who played collegiate golf at Oklahoma and now lives in Wexford, has made one birdie on the front nine in two days despite having several good looks.
Van Sickle, of McKees Rocks, who won the West Penn Open in 2013 and 2015, got to three-under by posting a 67 Tuesday. He made four birdies and a bogey on a more difficult golf course.
“This is the way I can play when I putt decently,” Van Sickle, who’s made three birdies on the front nine, said. “I’ve played with Beau on the Buckeye Tour (in Ohio) and he’s a younger player, but he’s a good player.”
Obremski, a graduate of Penn-Trafford High School, and Renwick, of DuBois, both had their moments on Tuesday, but didn’t let the rounds get away from them.
“It got going a little sideways out there,” Renwick said. “I made a nice par putt at nine and was even par. Then I hit it in the water on 10 and made bogey. But I eagled 12 and made birdies on 13 and 16. It almost went the other way, but I kept it together. I know I can’t make big numbers and definitely have to get off to a good start with these guys.”
Obremski, who qualified for the PGA Tour’s Greenbrier Classic a few weeks ago, has been on something of a roll and that’s continued this week.
“I’m controlling my emotions better and I’m believing more in myself,” he said. “Playing like I have has reassured me that how I played at Greenbrier is how I can play. I made a couple nice birdies on 12 and 13 and with the looks I had at birdies throughout the rounds, I could have been five or six under.”
The quartet of leaders are in the unusual position of not only trying to subdue each other, but not forget about those eight players very close behind.
The final round gets underway at 7:30 Wednesday morning with the 36 players who made the cut going off in twosomes. It will be Van Sickle and Titsworth in the final group at 10:03. Renwick and Obremski will get started at 9:54.