Mitchell Holmes Fires -4 (68) to Lead Day-One Qualifying at 96th Arizona Amateur

CAREFREE, Ariz. – Mitchell Holmes bounced back from an opening double-bogey to surge to the top of the leaderboard at -4, on Day 1 of Qualifying at the 96th Annual Arizona Amateur Championship, hosted by Desert Forest Golf Club in Carefree, Ariz. Teeing off on hole 10 to start play, Holmes evened out another bogey with three birdies to go out in 36, then blistered the back nine with a bogey-free 32 to finish at 68.

“I hot one bad tee shot off my first hole (Hole 10) that went right,” said Holmes after the round. “But I told myself, ‘You know what Mitch? You’ve got 36 more holes to get back on track,’ and that’s what I did today.”

Nick Beach, Jake Chanen and Canon Olkowski all sit a stroke behind Holmes at -3 (69). Beach made four of his five birdies on the day on the front nine, going out in 33. Chanen was tied for the lead through 17 holes until a bogey on 9 (his final hole of the day) dropped him to a tie for second. And Olkowski added an eagle to a scorecard with five birdies, winning the day’s battle with the golf course. But no one could catch Holmes on a hot, humid day at Desert Forest.

“You’ve got to keep it in play,” said Holmes, when asked about his key to navigating the golf course. “It starts with the tee shot, and then I was striking it with my irons. When I felt like I had a chance to get it close I took advantage.”