Huseman takes over lead spot at FD Amateur
Bates, Campbell stay out in front
The short games of both Andrew Huseman and Joe Urbanek have separated the duo from the pack at the 71st annual Fort Dodge Amateur golf tournament.
Now the money round will determine which player has what it takes to be crowned the 2019 champion.
In search of his first career FD Am title, Huseman moved to the top of the leaderboard with a four-under par 67 on moving day Saturday. The former Ankeny Centennial and Arkansas State University standout is two strokes clear of Urbanek in an open division race that looks — at the moment — like a two-horse race at the Fort Dodge Country Club.
Albia’s Joe Bates and Jim Campbell extended their leads in the senior and super senior divisions, respectively. Bates, the 2016 FD Am senior champ, carded his second consecutive 70 to push his advantage to five shots over Dave Gaer. Trying to hold off a pair of multi-time tourney titleists, Campbell has a three-stroke lead on Joel Yunek and is four ahead of Dave Sergeant on the super senior side.
Playing in near-perfect conditions for a second consecutive afternoon, Huseman caught fire early with two birdies and an eagle in his first six holes. The son of local chiropractor Bill Huseman and grandson of Fort Dodge Hall of Fame coach and athletic director Dutch Huseman gave two back with a pair of bogeys, but notched two front-nine birdies — Huseman started his round on hole No. 10 — to distance himself from the field on Saturday with the tourney’s best score so far.
“I got off to a quicker start (compared to Friday), then fought through bogeys (at 16 and 18) with a better front nine (than in the opening round),” said Huseman, a four-time Lakeside Amateur champ who has placed in the Top-3 here on three different occasions. “I made more putts this time around. I’m just trying not to get ahead of myself and stick to what works for me.
“I figure if I stay within my own game and play the way I’m capable of, I’ll be in good position when all is said and done.”
Urbanek is no stranger to success in this event, either. The Tripoli High School coach won the FD Am in 2017, then placed second here a year ago when he competed in the final foursome with Huseman.
“My putting has always served me well when I play here,” said Urbanek, a 1998 Hudson High School graduate. “I’m fortunate enough to see the best greens in the state on the nine-hole course I’m a regular on back home, and these greens roll very similar.
“I only had 25 putts on Friday and was at about the same number Saturday (Urbanek finished with 26), so that always makes a huge difference in how well you score. I just feel like this course suits my game very well.”
Urbanek birdied 4, 6 and 14, with bogeys at 10 and 13. It was a much less eventful round than Friday, when the Tripoli math teacher reeled off seven birdies but also had four bogeys.
Huseman and Urbanek will be paired with Willis Gaer (-1) for Sunday’s championship 18. Gaer is a former Des Moines Roosevelt standout and a junior-to-be on the Eastern Kentucky golf squad.
Erik Bredesen (E), Logan Schweinefus (E) and Jon Olson (+1) are also in the hunt, along with Callender’s Cody Jaeschke (+2) and Jake Marvelli (+2). Webster City’s Avery Fuhs (+3) is in the Top-10 as well.
Bates was arguably the most steady performer in the entire field for the second consecutive day. After a workman-like opening round that produced two birdies, one bogey and 16 pars, Bates was even more unwavering on Saturday, with one birdie and 17 pars.
Gaer (+3) — of Des Moines — joins Gowrie’s Tom Schill (+5) and Bret Taylor of Booneville (+5) in the final foursome as distant rivals to Bates in the senior race.
Campbell, the general manager of the Albia Golf and Country Club, had his second consecutive 74 in round two. The final super senior group will include Campbell (+6), Yunek (+9) and Sergeant (+10).
Yunek, a Lake City High School graduate who lives in Mason City, took home FD Am senior crowns in 2005, ’12 and ’13. Sergeant, from Fort Dodge, is a four-time senior winner and the defending super senior champion.
Overnight rain may dictate when — or if — the final round is played on Sunday. Players are scheduled to tee off between 9 and 10 a.m. on both the front and back side.
For the third consecutive day, temperatures are expected to be in the mid-70s with light winds and high humidity.
FORT DODGE AMATEUR
(Sunday’s Tee Times)
Open Division (Hole 1)
9 a.m. — Ryan Kinseth, Austin Morrow.
9:10 a.m. — Preston Peterson, Carson Caylor.
9:20 a.m. — Kevin Ault, Ethan Mechling, Eddie Doyle.
9:30 a.m. — Justin Schulte, Austin Reynolds, Ryan Horner.
9:40 a.m. — Avery Fuhs, Jake Marvelli, Cody Jaeschke.
9:50 a.m. — Erik Bredesen, Logan Schweinefus, Jon Olson.
10 a.m. — Andrew Huseman, Joe Urbanek, Willis Gaer.
Senior Division (Hole 10)
9:20 a.m. — Jay Hickman, Tony Newkirk, Frank Chiodo.
9:30 a.m. — Dave Henry, Jim Nelson, Tony Malizia.
9:40 a.m. — Terry Cook, Ron Peterson, Greg Kramer, Rob Dickerman.
9:50 a.m. — Joe Bates, Dave Gaer, Bret Taylor, Tom Schill.
Super Senior Division (Hole 10)
9 a.m. — Harold Hickman, John Kinsey, Brian Fell.
9:10 a.m. — Jim Campbell, Joel Yunek, Dave Sergeant.