weather icon Clear

Big moments, epic events highlighted Las Vegas golf in 2018

Updated January 8, 2019 - 4:34 pm

Exciting stuff is always happening in Las Vegas golf and several memorable moments and events took place in 2018. Here’s a few that stood out:

— “The Match” between Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson on Nov. 23 at Shadow Creek Golf Club, won by Mickelson, was a dominant story. Speculation began swirling in early summer about the potential matchup, which was made official Aug. 22 when Woods tweeted, “It’s on.”

Recently, news broke that a second match is in the works for 2019 and Shadow Creek again could be the host venue.

— PGA Tour superstars Rickie Fowler and Jordan Spieth, several other big names and local tour professionals played in the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open Nov. 1-4 at TPC Summerlin and helped draw record crowds. The eccentric Bryson DeChambeau won and helped fill up reporter notebooks with complex quotes, theories and anecdotes throughout the week.

Tournament organizers also announced that the Shriners will be played Oct. 3-6, 2019, a month earlier than 2018.

— Las Vegas is a hotbed for tour players and the influx continues at a stunning pace. Recent pros to move to Southern Nevada include Aaron Wise, Sangmoon Bae, Doug Ghim, Jenny Shin , Siwhan Kim, Na Yeon Choi, Maverick McNealy, Norman Xiong and several others.

On the Monday of Shriners week, Wise was named PGA Tour rookie of the year. Wise, Kevin Na and Scott Piercy were Vegas pros who posted PGA Tour wins in 2018. Also, Inbee Park and Danielle Kang won on the LPGA Tour, Kurt Kitayama and David Lipsky won on the European Tour and Bae on the Web.com Tour.

— In amateur ranks, former UNLV golfer Edward Fryatt won his 4th-straight Southern Nevada Golf Association player of the year award and Frank Abbott won his 5th-straight silver division player of the year honor.

— UNLV’s Professional Golf Management program opened the state-of-the-art Dwaine Knight Center for Golf Management in the Harrah’s College of Hospitality Hall. On the course, the Rebels made the NCAA regionals for the 30th-straight year.

— The end of 2018 brought with it another course closure as Black Mountain was shuttered. Residents along the course were unsuccessful in their efforts to keep it from closing.

— The Las Vegas Country Club was sold to the Samick Music Corporation, which took ownership Jan. 1, 2018. The new owners embraced the club’s history and recently unveiled a statue of Dean Martin near the clubhouse. The Rat Pack singer played the course on a daily basis in 1967, even before it officially opened.

Na out

Kevin Na missed last week’s Sentry Tournament of Champions because of a fractured finger. He expects to miss about a month.

Weekly deal

Play both Boulder Creek and Boulder City courses for $70 total through Feb. 10.

Stars on, off course

Representatives from area courses, golf associations and related businesses attended a golf industry alliance meeting Saturday hosted at Southern Highlands by general manager Jason Cheney and club ownership. The alliance was formed to lobby on behalf of the $84 billion golf industry (national economic impact) during Carson City legislative sessions.

The golf notebook appears Wednesdays. Freelance writer Brian Hurlburt is a two-time author who has covered golf in Las Vegas for more than two decades. He can be reached at bhurlburt5@gmail.com or @LVGolfInsider.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Las Vegas golfers must endure overseeding at courses

It’s that time of year when many golf courses undergo the dreaded overseeding process. It’s expensive for course owners and a major inconvenience for golfers.

Vegas Juniors making impact at college level

Much like the ever-growing contingent of professional tour players who have strong ties to Las Vegas, the group of local high school golfers moving on to play in college is also evolving.

PGA Tour, Houston Open to honor Butch Harmon

Last week, representatives of the PGA Tour, Houston Open and the Houston Astros Golf Foundation announced that the tournament will be known this year as the Houston Open honoring Butch Harmon.

Wes Weston claims PGA chapter championship

PGA of America professional Wes Weston shot 1-under 141 at TPC Las Vegas last week to win the 2019 Southwest Section, Southern Nevada Chapter Championship by three shots over Las Vegas Paiute’s Tom Fischer.

Golfer Collin Morikawa making move to Las Vegas

A local PGA of America golf professional has confirmed that former Cal-Berkeley all-American golfer and current PGA Tour player Collin Morikawa, 22, is making the move to Las Vegas.

New Las Vegas Golf Hall of Fame class revealed

The Night of Induction is Saturday, Sept. 28 at The Hill at TPC Summerlin, preceded by a golf tournament Sept. 27 at Spanish Trail.

Bragging rights on line during Shriners Clash of the Clubs

The event is the official Monday pro-am for the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open and features four-player amateur teams from golf clubs who are paired with a PGA Tour professional.

Jeff Gallagher goes home, hopes to win at U.S. Senior Open

Reflection Bay at Lake Las Vegas golf instructor Jeff Gallagher earned a fourth-straight trip to the nation’s senior golf championship that begins Thursday in South Bend, Indiana.

Las Vegas golf courses offer lower summer rates

Some golfers stay away from courses because of triple-digit temperatures, but others embrace the season because rates are drastically reduced.