GOLF : O’Grady In Field for County Open
Already boasting a strong field, including the past six champions and about a dozen former PGA Tour players, officials for the Buie San Diego County Open Golf Tournament received a call and entry request on Tuesday from Mac O’Grady, one of the big names and most outspoken players on the PGA Tour in the 1980s.
O’Grady, no longer a regular touring pro because of an ailing back, entered about 30 minutes before the Tuesday deadline and will play in the three-day, 54-hole tournament beginning this morning on the par-72, 6,659-yard South Course at Torrey Pines.
The San Diego County Open is the nation’s sixth oldest professional golf tournament with 62 years of history. Only the U.S. Open, PGA Championship, Los Angeles Open, Texas Open and Western Open have been around longer, according to tournament director Ken Johnson. Among the past winners are Leo Diegel (1930, ’31), Sam Snead ('43), Gene Littler ('49, ’52), Billy Casper ('53, ’54), Paul Runyan ('55, ’56, ’58), Scott Simpson ('78), Mark Wiebe ('82) and Lenny Clements ('87).
The purse this year is $65,000 with the winner’s share set at $8,000. A full field of 180 golfers, including 24 amateurs, is anticipated.
Bob Meyer of Sacramento edged 1989 champion Mike Swartz of Phoenix to win last year.
In addition to O’Grady, former PGA Tour players include Victor Regalado of Bonita, Rick Sprouse of El Cajon and Jeff Hart of Solana Beach.
Brothers Kevin Riley and Chris Riley, the 1990 San Diego Section high school champion, are entered as amateurs. Their father, Pat Riley, won the tournament in 1965.