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Brian Wierima / Forum News Service, Published August 03 2013

Hanson will not defend title Pine to Palm title

DETROIT LAKES, Minn. – There are very few things which would have prevented Beau Hanson from trying to defend his 2012 Pine to Palm championship. But one of them happened July 29 at the Fargo Country Club for the Frazee, Minn., golfer.

Shooting a 1-under-par 143 in two rounds of play, Hanson won the qualifying tournament and earned a berth in his first U.S. Amateur Championship tournament.

Hanson now advances to the 113th U.S. Amateur Championship at The Country Club in Brookline, Mass., Aug. 12-18.

“I’d love to defend my (Pine to Palm) title, but qualifying for the U.S. Am is a big thing for me,” Hanson said. “It’s my biggest accomplishment, yet.”

Hanson’s qualifying rounds included playing the same front nine at the Fargo Country Club four times during the July 29 rounds.

A slow start, which included four bogeys and two birdies on his first nine, was overcome after he was able to settle in and tie for the lead after the first 18 holes.

“I thought I was going to shoot 90 after the first two holes, where I even topped a ball,” Hanson said. “But then I got into a groove and settled down.”

Hanson will still play his qualifying rounds at the Pine to Palm, with the goal of still being able to medal. But he will forego any match play if he qualifies.

“I don’t want to take a spot away from anyone, so I just want to go out and try to medal,” Hanson said.

Hanson won the 2012 title after beating University of Minnesota’s David Haley Jr. 4 and 3, thus earning him a free berth into the 81st Pine to Palm Golf Tournament, which starts Monday and runs through next Sunday.

The U.S. Am starts Monday, Aug. 12, which is one day after the Pine to Palm finals.

Field as deep as ever

Like last year, this year’s Pine to Palm championship field will feature some top young golfers, coming from Division I and II colleges from all over the U.S.

There will be nine of the 11 University of Minnesota golfers competing, according to head coach John Carlson. There will be plenty of other college-colored golf bags scattered at the Pine to Palm.

“It’s going to be another strong field in all the divisions,” said first-year Pine to Palm committee chairman Jim Bruflodt. “We have been around 470 to 480 golfers for the last few years and should be around that number again.”

Other division champions expected back to defend their titles include Mid-Am’s A.J. Greff, Senior’s champion Scott Linnerooth and Super Seniors’ Chuck Renner.

Jake Miller was the 2012 flight medalist, as well.

Brian Wierima is the sports editor for the Detroit Lakes Tribune