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Inside Hawaii Golf - Tournament Golf

"The Pulse of Competitive Golf in the Aloha State"

Hilo Invitational Pro-Am & Golf Tournament, 2004

Hilo Municipal Golf Course - February 27-29

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Phengsavath wins low professional honors


    Nick Mason (right), a University of Hawaii-Hilo junior won the 7th annual Hilo Invitational Pro-Am and Golf Tournament Sunday with a five-stroke victory over professional Joe Phengsavath (right bottom) of Oahu.

    Mason, tied with Mauna Kea Resort’s Kevin Hayashi and Phengsavath going into Sunday at four under par, fired a final round three under 68 to finish with a tournament total seven under par. With the victory, Mason becomes the first amateur to win capture the title since the revival of this event back in 1998. Phengsavath had rounds of 67-73 (140), while professional Aaron Chun finished alone in third with 71-70 (141). Hayashi and 2003 low amateur champion Garrett Okamura finished the tournament at even par 141.

    With the win, Mason picked up a five hundred dollar gift certificate and a crystal trophy, while Phengsavath pocketed five thousand dollars for his low professional finish.

    The 21-year-old Mason was very excited with his victory on Sunday and said his play of late has helped him get through the final round. “I started the last round very good and hit the ball well. I ran into trouble on back nine, but tried to stay real patient”, recalls Mason. “I tried to play one shot at a time and not get ahead of myself”. “Playing with Kevin and Joe was a great experience, they are great players”, said the champion.

    The entire UH-Hilo golf team was on hand to see Mason be crowned winner of the tournament. Head coach Earl Tamiya followed his number one player through out his round and Mason acknowledged both his coach and team’s presence. “This means so much to me, I am so thankful to my girlfriend Wendy (who caddied for him both days) and Coach and my team”.

    The weather in Hilo this weekend was so unpredictable that playing 36 holes was up in the air. The golf course had trees falling down, sheds blown to pieces and lots of standing water and debris scattered all over.

    Tournament officials were happy with the ending. “It’s amazing we got this done. All the players got to finish, and want to thank the golfers for bearing with us during the storm”, said Lance Taketa, co-chairman of the Hilo Invitational.


    Troy Tamiya, Hilo Municipal’s golf superintendent, “did a great job getting the golf course prepared after all the mess the wind did to the course”, said Mason in his acceptance speech. And a fine job his crew did indeed, for not only did they manage to make it playable and safe, somehow they did one better. They seemed to make this historic victory for Nick Mason one he would remember. They somehow managed to make the sun come out Sunday afternoon.



    Kevin Carll won the long drive exhibition in a playoff over Aaron Chun. Both golfers tied with identical drives of 388 yards. In the playoff, Carll won with a drive of 343 yards, just edging out Chun’s effort of 342 yards.

In the pro-am, Team Big Island Candies #1 won with professional Kevin Carll, and amateurs Elton Tanaka, Allan Ikawa, and Warren Haruki.


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