Ellis Beats #1 Seed for Jr. Amateur Match-Play Championship

HIGHLAND, MI–The 29th Michigan Junior State Amateur tournament finished today, July 19, at Prestwick Village Golf Club, naming Dave Ellis (Negaunee) the 2007 Match-Play Champion. Ellis defeated Stroke-Play Champion Philip Snow (Northville) 2 & 1 in today?s final round of match-play to claim this year?s title. Osprey Recreational was the sponsor of this year?s championship.

Ellis seemed to work his way up to win the 8th Michigan Junior Match-Play Championship. He completed Monday?s two 18-hole rounds of stroke-play with a 74 and a 73 and then posted an improved 71 for Tuesday?s final round of stroke-play. This gave him a 54-hole score of 218, qualifying him for match-play and earning him the 10th place seed.

Ellis started out winning a tight first match 1 Up over 7th seed Brad Elliot (Sunfield). He then defeated Stroke-Play Runner-Up Barrett Kelpin (Kalamazoo) 3 & 2 in the Quarter-Finals to advance to the Semi-Finals on Thursday morning.

Ellis then played yet another close match against Payne Gniewek (Trenton), ultimately winning 1 Up. This afternoon, Ellis finally met Snow, who posted a 208 stroke-play score for the Stroke-Play Champion title, 10 strokes lower than Ellis. Ellis defeated Snow 2 & 1 to gain the Match-Play title.

Ellis, a 17-year-old Negaunee High School student, was pleased with his win.
Of the final four players in the tournament, Ellis claimed, ?Three of the final four are going to State, so I felt pretty privileged to even be part of that group and then to win it out right.? This was the first year Ellis had qualified for the Michigan Junior Am.

When asked about the competition and which players were the toughest, Ellis explained, ?You have to treat them equal in order to play your best and I think I did a good job of that.? He also noted that a consistent short-game was one of the keys to winning the match-play title.

Ellis hopes to continue playing golf in college, though he is currently unsure of which school he wants to attend. As far as the rest of the summer, Ellis will be caddying for his twin brother, Dan, in the U.S. Junior Amateur tournament.

Up next in the GAM tournament schedule is the 5th GAM Junior Two-Person Team tournament, set for July 24 at Great Oaks Country Club in Rochester.