Colin Inglis left no doubt, which is exactly what he had to stare down on the very first hole Sunday at Indian Canyon.
Inglis had a messy finish after leading the Washington Open in the final round in May and dropped into a tie for fifth place. He was determined not to let it happen again when he took a three-shot lead to the first tee at the Rosauers Open Invitational.
And he promptly three-putted the first green.
Negative thoughts crept into his mind, but they didn’t stick around for long as Inglis fought off a challenge from Washington State University senior Max Sekulic to win the 34th Rosauers tournament in convincing fashion.
“I kind of started thinking about (the Washington Open) even more after the three-putt, so it makes it that much better to birdie four of the last five holes and prove to myself that I could do it,” said Inglis, who collected an $8,000 first-place check after shooting 19-under 194 in the 54-hole event.
Sekulic pulled within one shot on several occasions, but he couldn’t overcome a tough afternoon on the greens. He was the low amateur and placed second overall with a 67 to finish at 15 under.
The Home Course’s Shane Prante (64) and Palouse Ridge’s Loren Jeglum (67) shared third at 12 under.
Inglis tore up the back nine for the third straight day with a 4-under 32. He played the back in 14 under without a bogey in 27 holes. The 32-year-old assistant pro at Shadow Hills Country Club in Junction City, Oregon, led by one before making birdies on 14, 15, 17 and 18 – all on putts between 5-10 feet.
When his 10-footer on No. 17 trickled into the cup, he had a three-shot cushion over Sekulic.
“I don’t know why I played that side so well,” Inglis said. “There’s a couple of par 5s that are pretty reachable, and 17 is a driveable par 4, but it was kind of other holes that I played well.
“Honestly the putt that kept my momentum going was the one on 10. I blew the first putt way by and made an 8-, 9-footer coming back. That was huge because Max birdied the next hole and without that putt we would have been tied. I just tried to stay one ahead of him the whole time.”
Sekulic had numerous chances to apply additional pressure. He hit quality approach after quality approach, but just couldn’t cash in with birdies. He eagled No. 2 with a 5-footer. He birdied the par-3 11th with a 3-foot putt and added his final birdie on No. 15 with a 4-footer.
“I was hitting it pretty well and doing my best to remain patient,” Sekulic said. “I made a good eagle on No. 2 and I had looks at the hole. I was getting around it, some lip-outs. I was hitting good putts.”
Said Inglis: “Watching him hit the ball, he never left the flag all day. Every putt he hit looked like it was going in.”
No. 7 and No. 14 helped swing momentum toward Inglis. Sekulic was a bit unlucky that his drive on the 287-yard par 4 seventh hung up near the fringe instead of tumbling down a slope onto the green. He lag-putted within four feet but missed the uphill birdie putt. Inglis nearly holed his 25-yard chip and had a tap-in birdie.
Both players crushed their drives on the 440-yard 14th. Both hit nice approaches, but Sekulic missed an 8-footer before Inglis drained a 5-footer.
Inglis captured his third PGA Pacific Northwest Section major and he’ll have a chance at another at the Northwest Open in mid August. Sekulic turns his attention to the U.S. Amateur at Oakmont from Aug. 9-15.
“I played a nice bogey-free round,” Sekulic said. “It was clean golf. It wasn’t what I needed to win. I played well, too, but I didn’t play as well as him.”
Inglis said his first call was going to be to his wife and their 14-month-old son.
“I wish they were here. I can’t wait to get home,” an emotional Inglis said. “I’ve already got about 20 texts from (Shadow Hills) members and friends. This feels pretty good.”
Local journalism is essential.
Give directly to The Spokesman-Review's Northwest Passages community forums series -- which helps to offset the costs of several reporter and editor positions at the newspaper -- by using the easy options below. Gifts processed in this system are not tax deductible, but are predominately used to help meet the local financial requirements needed to receive national matching-grant funds.
Subscribe to the sports newsletter
Get the day’s top sports headlines and breaking news delivered to your inbox by subscribing here.