Palmer Jackson competing at Sunnehanna Country Club

Jackson, Salvitti, three back after round 2 at Sunnehanna
By Mike Dudurich • June 13, 2024

WESTMONT – Things are starting to get interesting high up in the Alleghenies.

The 83rd playing of the Sunnehanna Amateur enters its final two rounds this morning at Sunnehanna with the following interesting tidbits in place.

 • Five players are tied for the lead at 5-under par, eight players are a shot back at 4-under, four players are at 3-under, and 11 more players are at 2-under. Throw in the 9 players who are at 1-under, and 37 players are within five shots of the lead. And what that means is there could be quite a battle today and Saturday for the title.

 • West Penn Golf Association stars Palmer Jackson and Rocco Salvitti, a pair of Golden Domers, are tied in the top 20 at 19th. Salvitti posted rounds of 70-68 and Jackson shot 71-67.

What does all of that mean?

For one, it means nearly 40 players very much in the mix to win the coveted title. Included in that number are Jackson and Salvitti.

“Today was a great day (68),” Salvitti said. “I plotted my way around the golf course, and I feel like I definitely have a chance to win if I stick to my plan, which I will. The course was hard today. I think the greens were two feet faster than they have been.”

Jackson, the elder Golden Domer, had four birdies and one bogey, and agreed with Salvitti’s assessment.

“Oh, I think he can definitely win,” he said. “I feel like I can be right there, too. I did a good job of not throwing any shots away today.”

Jackson accentuated his day by draining a 30-foot birdie on 18.

He also had the longest drive of the day or maybe many days at Sunnehanna CC. On the 427-yard 12th hole, he a drive down the right side of the fairway. It headed toward a bunker than requires a drive of 302 yards to cover it. He did that, but when the ball came back to earth, it hit on the back side of the trap.

It shot forward and when it had stopped travelling, Jackson had only 83 yards left to the green.

The quartet at the top of the leaderboard is Jay Leng, Pongsapak Laopakdee, Connor Jones and Max Herendeen. They’ve played a total of eight rounds over two days and nobody has posted a score higher than 69.

Most of the other WPGA representatives improved from the first round. Gregor Meyer posted his second round of 73 to finish at six-over par.

J.F. Aber, in his first appearance in the Sunnehanna Amateur had rounds of 72 and 70 for a 142 total and if he does well in today’s third round has a good shot to make the cut.

Chuck Tragesser also got in at 142 with rounds of 73-69 and a similar round could get him to Saturday’s final round.

Unfortunately, the WPGA also has the final two players on the scoreboard.

Hollidaysburg’s Sam Lafferty improved by nine shots in his second round to have a 91-82—173 total. Sunnehanna’s club champion, Lou Bruzdas, posted rounds of 89-86—175.

About the WPGA
Founded in 1899, the Western Pennsylvania Golf Association is the steward of amateur golf in the region. Started by five Member Clubs, the association now has nearly 200 Member Clubs and 34,000 members. The WPGA conducts 14 individual competitions and 10 team events, and administers the WPGA Scholarship Fund and Western Pennsylvania Golf Hall of Fame.