PREVIEW: Portage County Amateur Championships

Portage County Amateur Golf ChampionshipIt will be a week of Amateur competition in July as both the 7th Annual Matt Mishler Junior Portage County Amateur and the 84th Record-Courier Portage County Amateur and Senior Amateur compete during the third week.

The Amateurs always welcome both returning champions and new golfers each season. Returning winners are welcomed with a “Walk of Champions” recognizing their years of success. New golfers take on the challenge looking to earn one of the titles awarded.

Golfers for both events converge at Oak Knolls Golf Course in Kent and Windmill Lakes Golf Club in Ravenna for the events that crown the best golfers in the greater Portage County area and beyond



The Amateur and Senior Amateur continue to grow since the event was split into two days two years ago.

In a nod of gratitude to the large numbers of Seniors age 50 and over competing, the Senior Amateur will tee off at Oak Knolls on July 26 and conclude at Windmill Lakes on July 27. Seniors compete in three age divisions: 50-59, 60-69 and 70+.

Senior women join the Women, County and Open Divisions on July 26 and Windmill and then finish their final round at Oak Knolls on July 27.

All competitors play a 36-hole stroke play tournament.



Seven years ago, the family of Matt Mishler provided seed money to start the Junior Portage County Amateur. Since then the Junior has competed at four different courses over the past six years, testing the skills of youth golfers in the greater Portage County area.

This year’s Junior Amateur will again compete at Windmill Lakes Golf Club on July 21 and Oak Knolls Golf Club on July 22.

Youths ages 13 to 19 play 18 holes each day while juniors 12 and under play nine holes at both courses.



Registration forms are available in the Record-Courier, at the host golf courses and online at Golf in the Record-Courier Amateurs Facebook page as well as on Forms may be completed and dropped off at host golf courses, at the office of the Record-Courier in Kent or mailed to the R-C offices.



For the Amateur, Senior Amateur and Junior Amateur, the registration fees have remained the same for more than a decade.

Registration for the Amateur and Senior Amateur is $75 for all divisions through July 15 with a $95 late registration fee accepted until July 22. The fee includes all medals and trophies as well as a prize package of gift certificates to be used at the host courses based on the number of competitors.

The Junior Amateur is $50 for ages 13 to 19 and $35 for ages 12 and under and includes all play at both courses, a hot dog and a drink during each round and a $10 gift certificate presented to paid juniors to spend at Oak Knolls and Windmill Lakes in addition to medals, trophies and champions gift certificates.



The final day of the Portage County Amateur found several collegiate golfers vying for the championship.

When the threesome finished their round, Bud Radis of Aurora, a Miami of Ohio golfer earned the championship by two strokes over Nevada Lemon of Rootstown, a member of the Malone University men’s golf team and Cody Nickson of Kent a varsity golfer for Wright State University.

Spectators watching the threesome were impressed at their sportsmanship as well as competitive spirit as they concluded the round.

Behind them were a handful of champions and consistent players in the Amateur including Ed Marsinek of Kent, Rob Schustrich of Windham and Jeff Stormer of Suffield.

The open division was dominated by Brian Smith of Amherst, topping Eric Bowman of Alliance by four strokes while the women’s hampions included Nicole Trivisonno of Wickliffe for the 39 and under group and Clare Lebaj of Berea for the 40-plus.

Former Amateur champion, Dave Cutlip of Suffield, won the Senior Division in his first move to the older division, beating John Franks of Farmington by two strokes.

Senior gold winners included a jubilant John Sloe of Aurora who had some help thanks to his son, an Aurora High School golfer, caddying for him.

Past champion Jerry Bobbs of Ravenna won the Senior Platinum division in a one-hole playoff against Robert K. Hall, also of Ravenna.



Golfers who played significant roles on the upcoming golf season also were at the top of the leaderboard in the Junior Portage County Amateur.

Michael Kenney, the two-time Metro Division player of the year for the Kent Roosevelt Rough Riders, won the Amateur championship in the boys 16 to 19 age division in a three-hole play-off against Cody Tuttle, a senior and Player of the Year for the County Division.

Evan Ferrara of Kent, a member of the Metro Division championship Kent Rough Riders, won the boys 13 to 15 year old age division over Joey Kainrad of Palmyra, also a member of the victorious County Division Pirates.

In the girls 13 to 19 age division, Coreena Wise of Kent beat teammate Chloe Wise of Kent by one stroke. Both girls are members of the successful Lady Rough Rider team who qualified for the OHSAA Division I girls state championship.

In the youngest age division, Joey Vitali of Warren and Grace Thompson of Kent topped the 12 and under age divisions.

The Junior Amateur has been a who’s who of upcoming youth golfers and high school golfer stand-outs.



For more information or to answer any questions about the Amateurs, please call (330) 206-9083 or email

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