The eighth try proved to be the charm for Sean Ramsbacher this past weekend.
Competing in his eighth-straight 4th of July Tournament at Whitefish Lake Golf Club — a streak that stretches back to when he was 14-years-old — the Missoula Sentinel graduate and Montana Tech junior carded a three-day total of 215 to prevail at the 83rd Earl Hunt Memorial.
Ramsbacher shot a 72 on Thursday on the south course, a 71 on Friday on the north course and a 72 on Saturday on the south course. Park City’s Liam Clancy finished one stroke back in second with a 216, Hamilton’s Payton Taylor, Billings’ Garrett Woodin and Byron Olson of Houston each carded a 217 for a three-way tie for third.
The total field consisted of over 200 golfers from across the country.
“It felt amazing,” Ramsbacher said on Tuesday as he looked back on his win. “I just feel that’s one of the bigger tournament in Montana. It felt good to play three good rounds in a row and win it. Three days is really hard to stay around even.”
For the past seven years victory had eluded Ramsbacher in Whitefish. But a win at the Oilfield Tournament in Shelby in mid-June gave him a healthy dose of confidence heading into the tournament this time around.
“I had just been playing well going into it,” he said. “I knew I had a chance.”
Montana Tech golf coach Lee Labreche passed away in February and the team he left behind proceeded to have a banner season as Sean Benson — playing with his late coach close to heart — went on to win the Frontier Conference Tournament in April.
With Benson’s playing career at Tech now over, new golf coach Sean Ryan is hoping that Ramsbacher can help continue the Orediggers’ recent streak of success on the fairway.
“It says a lot about the trajectory of Tech golf,” Ryan said of Ramsbacher’s victory over the weekend. “(Benson) helped put Montana Tech golf on the map. I think (Rambacher) is the next iteration of that.”
With the Frontier season not too far ahead, Ramsbacher will first compete in the US Amateur Qualifying Tournament in Missoula and the Montana Men’s State Am in Great Falls at the end of July.
He already knows what he needs to do to keep his momentum rolling.
“Just keep competing, keep playing consistent and try to make all-conference this year.”