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August 2012

Ryan Lenahan uses eagle putt to capture Bobcat North Dakota State Open

Ryan Lenahan

Ryan Lenahan lines up his putt during the Bobcat North Dakota State Open on Sunday at Fargo Country Club. Lenahan won the tournament by two strokes. Carrie Snyder / The Forum

When reflecting on Ryan Lenahan’s college career at the University of Nebraska, put it this way: They’re not going to put him in a Cornhuskers hall of fame.

But the professional level has treated him different. And on Sunday, Lenahan notched his fourth career victory on the Dakotas Tour. He carded a 4-under 67 to win by two shots over Matt Pridey in the Bobcat North Dakota State Open at the Fargo Country Club.

“I didn’t have the greatest career at Nebraska,” Lenahan said, “but as a professional, I’ve worked really hard. It was hard in college to focus solely on golf.”

Fargo’s Dave Schultz and Andre Metzger from Sioux Falls, S.D., finished fourth. They were bumped up one spot after Brock Mulder – who was in a heated battle with Lenahan on the back nine holes – was disqualified for signing an incorrect scorecard.

Mulder forfeited the fourth-place prize of $3,500. Lenahan, meanwhile, won $10,000 and will get his PGA qualifying school fee of $4,500 paid by Bobcat.

He started the day four shots off of leader Ryan Peterson. But Peterson struggled – he four-putted a green early in his round – and finished with a 78.

Essentially, the tourney came down to Lenahan, Mulder and Pridey.

Mulder had two hiccups, including three-putting from 15 feet on the par-3 15th and losing his ball on his drive on No. 18.

“It was fun, I always like being in contention,” said Mulder, who made his comments before the DQ was announced. “I made some really good swings out there today, but I let one get away on 15.”

Lenahan, playing one group ahead of Mulder, was watching Mulder putt while standing on the No. 16 tee box. He said it was also one of the few times he was scoreboard watching.

“I wanted to see what was going on,” he said. “Maybe I would have altered my game at that point. But I’ll be honest, when I got up, I wasn’t thinking of winning today. That didn’t start until the eagle on No. 11.”

His eagle 3 on the par-5 hole tied him for the lead. He was steady from there, and he did it playing with one of his best friends, former Bobcat champion and former teammate at Nebraska in Brady Schnell.

Asked what his college highlight was, the 28-year-old Lenahan had a tough time thinking of one.

“Good question,” he said. “It was a team effort so probably the first year we went to regionals. As a team, that meant a lot.”

As an individual, the Bobcat title meant a lot.

“When you win, that means you’re doing something right,” he said. “It’s at the end of the summer and hopefully this will build momentum toward Q-school.”

Note: The above article was written by Jeff Kolpack of The Forum newspaper. The story appeared in the August 6th, 2012 edition.