Antoine Santarelli polished off the prestigious Sarasota City Men's Amateur last weekend at Bobby Jones Golf Club with a seven-shot victory.
The 21-year-old French native trains at Missing Link Golf Academy in Lakewood Ranch. He closed the 72-hole tournament on the British Course at Bobby Jones with an 8-under-par 280 total.
Santarelli also won the Bradenton City Men's Amateur last November. A former IMG Academy student, Santarelli left after three years and found Missing Link Golf Academy through a tip he got from a friend.
Heading into the two-weekend Sarasota City, Santarelli said he hadn't practiced much due to a back injury. But right before the event, Santarelli said he found something in his swing that allowed him to strike the ball well.
Because he has a history of back injuries, Santarelli has worked to lengthen his backswing. But working with coach Kevin Conley, he found he can keep it shorter without sacrificing solid contact.
"We found a compromise where I could keep it as short as it is and still be able to get the club in the position I need," Santarelli said.
Next up for Santarelli is the U.S. Open local qualifier May 11 at TPC Prestancia.
Speaking of the U.S. Open local qualifier, various professionals and amateurs are teeing it up for just a few qualifying berths at stake May 11 at TPC Prestancia's Stadium Course. Tee times range from 8 to 9:57 a.m.
There are 20 players in the field listing Manatee County cities as their residence. Additionally, former Lakewood Ranch High and Florida State University standout Seath Lauer is in the field.
Englishman Sam Osborne, who previously lived in Palmetto, made it through local and sectional qualifying to play in the U.S. Open in 2012 when it was held in San Francisco at the Olympic Club.
The Concession Cup is returning to The Concession Golf Club in East Manatee in 2016. Officials announced the dates for the second installment of the biennial tournament, which was won by the United States in 2014.
The three-day tournament is slated for April 22-24 and features various Ryder Cup match play formats (foursomes, fourball and singles competition) for mid-amateur and senior amateurs.
The U.S. will face Great Britain and Ireland.
On March 17 at Terra Ceia Bay, Phyllis Dykstra aced the 105-yard 2nd hole with a driver. Witnesses were Bob Dykstra, Charle Denuyl and Sandy Denuyl.
On March 18 at University Park, Mike McDaniel aced the 140-yard 5th hole with an 8-iron. Witnesses were Cole Koester and Brandon Koester.
On March 18 at Terra Ceia Bay, Joan Pease aced the 105-yard 2nd hole with a driver. Witnesses were Erika Chabra and Carole Hendren.
On March 22 at Lakewood Ranch Golf & Country Club, George Swindasz aced the 120-yard 7th hole on the Royal Lakes course with an 8-iron. Witnesses were Larry Flax and Joe Parelman.
On March 24 at Terra Ceia Bay, Joe Corvaia aced the 133-yard 8th hole with a 5-wood. Witnesses were Jim LaBrecque, Dave Roberts and Shirley LaBrecque.
-- Jason Dill, Herald sports writer