CHRIS KORTE CLAIMS VICTORY WITH 13-UNDER AT 2022 DESERT FINANCIAL OPEN PRESENTED BY UNITED RENTALS
JUMPED UP THE LEADERBOARD WITH SECOND-ROUND 62,
HOLDS ON FOR WIN WITH 3-UNDER IN FINAL ROUND
SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – Chris Korte (Littleton, Colo.) held a slim one-shot lead thanks to his spectacular 8-under 62 in the second round, and while not as spectacular, his final-round 3-under 67 was enough to claim victory at the 2022 Desert Financial Open Presented by United Rentals, his first professional win.
Korte got off to a good start on Thursday, making birdie on two of the first five holes, but Andrew Paisley (Scottsdale, Ariz.), who started the day a shot back, matched Korte’s birdies on the par-5 second and par-4 fifth. Korte finished the front with four straight pars to make the turn at 12-under for the tournament, while Paisley sandwiched a birdie on eight with costly bogeys on the par-3 sixth and par-3 eighth hole to make the turn at 10-under par, two shots back of Paisley.
Korte and Paisley basically matched each other hole for hole on the back nine. They both made par on the first five holes, then both matched each other with birdies on the Par-4 15th hole. Still trailing by two shots going into 16, Korte made his first bogey of the day on the Par-3 16th, but Paisley couldn’t take advantage as he also carded a bogey. Both then recovered on 17 with birdies, and heading into 18 with a two-shot lead, Korte matched Paisley’s par and wrapped up the win and $20,000 first place check. He finished at 13-under for the tournament, two shots ahead of runner-up Paisley.
“Getting my first professional win at the Desert Financial Open feels like a dream right now. There has been so much hard work, perseverance through tough stretches, and most importantly unwavering support from family, friends, and coaches,” Korte said. “My game has felt extremely close to breaking through the last few months, so this feels especially sweet to prove to myself that I can win against some of the best players around. Scottsdale is a second home of mine, so having my buddy Mark on the bag and my girlfriend Morgan watching the back nine today was so fun.”
Korte recorded rounds of 68-62-67 over the three days and had just three bogeys throughout the 54 holes. He got into contention after his sizzling 8-under 62 in round two, and never relinquished the lead after that. A two-time Colorado Amateur champion, Korte turned pro in 2018 and currently plays on PGA TOUR Latin America.
“Talking Stick was in incredible shape all week long. You really had to think your way around the course as firm and undulating as the greens were. Any lapses in focus were punishing, especially on approach shots to some tough pins, so it was vital to fully commit to each shot,” Korte added. “I felt like I played some great golf this week. I started the week playing the US. Open local qualifier at Mesa Country Club on Monday, where I won with a 10 under 62. This was huge for my confidence going into this week. My first round of the tournament was solid but nothing special. Shooting a bogey free 62 was some of the best golf I’ve played. I actually lipped out putts on my final 3 holes that day, so it could have been crazy low.”
Paisley led after the first round at 7-under but could only manage rounds of 68 – 68 to finish solo second. He only had two bogeys through the first 41 holes, but had three bogeys the last 13 holes that proved to be costly.
Zander Wintson (Scottsdale, Ariz), Grant Booth (Scottsdale, Ariz.) and Matt Marshall (Yamhill, Ore.) all finished T-3 at 10-under; while Perry Cohen (La Jolla, Calif.) finished solo six after his final-round 66 got him to 9-under for the tournament. Winston and Marshall carded rounds of 66, while Marshall turned in a 3-under par 67 that included birdies on two of the last three holes.
Rounding out the Top-10 are Brandon Lee (Phoenix, Ariz.), Jake Chanen (Phoenix, Ariz.) and Griffin Wood (Scottsdale, Ariz.) who finished T-7 at 8-under par; while Daniel Miernicki (Lake Oswego, Ore.), Caleb Ramirez (Goodyear, Ariz.), Ryan Linton (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), Ben Geyer (Arbuckle, Calif.), Colin Featherstone (Vista, Calif.), David Longmire (Glendora, Calif.) and Brendon Jelley (Scottsdale, Ariz.) all finished T-10 at 7-under par. Miernicki, Ramirez and Linton made it into the Top-10 by shooting 5-under 65, the low round of the day.
“It was another great week, another tournament in the books with an extremely competitive field and some great golf, congrats to Chris for getting the win,” Pray said. “Thanks to all of the golfers who continue to play in this tournament, thanks to Talking Stick Golf Club for once again being such a great host, and of course thanks to Desert Financial and United Rentals for being such great partners. We are excited to crown another champion, and proud to be able to present a check to $7,500 to the Desert Financial Foundation, that is what this tournament is about.”
In six years, the Desert Financial Credit Union Open Presented by United Rentals is making a name for itself as one of the premier professional golf tournaments in the State of Arizona. The event features a 54-hole tournament with a field of 156 players, with a cut to the low 50 players and ties after 36 holes. The tournament has a guaranteed purse of $125,000 – with $20,000 going to the winner.
The Desert Financial Credit Union Open Presented by United Rentals was created to provide a first-class competitive golf tournament for touring professionals, while also raising money to support Arizona Charities. For more information visit the tournament website at www.DesertFinancialOpen.com.
ABOUT DESERT FINANCIAL CREDIT UNION
Desert Financial Credit Union, celebrating more than 80 years in Arizona, is the state’s largest local credit union with $6 billion in assets, 350,000+ members and 47 branches. Membership eligibility is open across Arizona with contactless solutions via eBranch, making it easy to call, click or come in. As a not-for-profit cooperative, Desert Financial takes pride in sharing success. In 2020, members received $14 million in dividends via the Member Giveback Bonus, and Desert Financial gave more than $5 million in COVID-19 relief plus donations, scholarships and Random Acts of Kindness to our members, community and team. Learn more about the credit union difference at Desert Financial Credit Union and find news and information @desertfinancial on Twitter.
Desert Financial Foundation is the sole sponsor of the Phoenix Children’s Hospital 1 Darn Cool School Program, which allows patients to experience a traditional classroom setting while in treatment. The accredited teaching staff works with more than 10,000 patients each year in the hospital classroom to help keep children academically on track and alleviate any anxiety about falling behind. 1 Darn Cool School provides year-round individual instruction for all students grades K-12 and even offers various art classes on Fridays known as “Fine Arts Fridays”.
Should patients not be able to leave their beds, teachers are able to visit patient rooms to provide academic assistance. Additionally, the teachers facilitate each patient's transition back to their regular learning environment once they are ready to leave the hospital. Phoenix Children’s Hospital has the distinction of being one of only a handful of hospitals in the country that provides schooling for patients.