Harvie Builds Big Lead at 89th Washington State Men's Amateur Championship

Joe Harvie of Orting, Wash. shot a second consecutive round of 2-under par 69 to take a five shot lead after two rounds in the 89th Washington State Men’s Amateur Championship. Harvie is the only player in the 120-man field to break par in either of the first two rounds of the championship.

The 54-hole championship is taking place on the Rope Rider course at Suncadia Resort in Cle Elum, Wash. and is being conducted by the Washington State Golf Association.

After today’s round, the field was cut to the low 60 players and ties, leaving 67 players to compete in tomorrow’s final round. The leaders will tee off tomorrow at 11:10 a.m. PDT.

“It’s playing really hard,” Harvie said of the swirling, windy conditions at Rope Rider. “Pars are not bad scores, so if you give yourself some chances at birdie and can sneak a couple of those in, it helps the scorecard. And if you can eliminate mental mistakes, especially when the conditions are as tough as they are, you can score decently.”

Asked how he is able to separate himself from the field after the first two rounds, Harvie said, “Just keeping the ball low (in the wind), and maintaining control of the spin on the short shots. I guess just be an athlete and feel the shots, and just play golf.”

Harvie will be a sophomore on the Seattle University men’s golf team, and this past spring was named the Western Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year for golf. Last month he made it to the Round of 16 in the PNGA Men’s Amateur. While attending Orting High School, Harvie was the league MVP all four years playing on the school’s boys’ golf team, and was twice named Tacoma Athletic Commission Athlete of Year for golf (2011, 2012).

Paired with Harvie in tomorrow’s final group will be Charlier Kern of Mercer Island, Wash. and Aaron Whalen of Ephrata, Wash. who are tied for second, five shots back of Harvie. Earlier this summer Kern, who just graduated from William & Mary in Virginia, was the medalist at PNGA Men’s Amateur, making it to that championship’s semifinals; and Whalen, the reigning Washington 2A High School champion, was medalist at the U.S. Amateur Qualifier last month at Palouse Ridge Golf Club.

Tied for seventh is Joe Lanza of Poulsbo, Wash., who won this championship in 2004. Lanza turned professional shortly after that victory, but after a couple years playing the mini tours he regained his amateur status and became a school teacher.

Final round pairings can be found here. Visit www.thewsga.org for championship news, live scores, and more from the Washington State Men’s Amateur Championship. Follow the championship on Twitter at the handles @WSGA1922 and @WSGAChampions for live updates and news and use the hashtag #WSGAMensAm.

Suncadia Resort is located on the eastern slope of the Cascade Mountains in Cle Elum, Wash. The resort has three golf courses – Rope Rider, Prospector and Tumble Creek. Designed by the team of Peter Jacobsen and Jim Hardy, Rope Rider also hosted the 2013 WSGA Men’s and Women’s Mid-Amateur Championships.