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Nick Mandell shines in Hudson Cup, keeps amateurs on par with pros

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Let’s talk golf.

What’s more, let’s talk about the Hudson Cup.

It’s an annual weekend series started 70 years ago by a successful Portland businessman named Robert Hudson, who was a benefactor of golf back then and helped bring PGA tournaments to the region.

The Hudson Cup pits the Northwest’s top professionals against the top amateurs in a kind of Ryder Cup-type competition.

It’s an honor to be chosen on either Hudson Cup team.

This year’s event was played Oct. 18-19 at Overlake Golf & Country Club in Medina, and the amateurs found a way to tie the pros 10-10.

The star for the amateurs was Nick Mandell, the Southridge High and Washington State University grad whose father Matt is the head pro at Kennewick’s Canyon Lakes Golf Course – a place where Nick learned to play the game.

Nick Mandell was named the Charles Congdon Award recipient, given to the event’s top performing amateur – and more importantly, voted on by the competing professionals.

Each golfer plays in three types of rounds: foursomes, four-ball matches, and singles matches.

Mandell went 3-0 in the event, winning each time he went out on the course.

In the foursomes event, Mandell teamed with Derek Bayley of The Links GC to beat Northwest pro’s Jeff Coston and Ryan Benzel. Then Mandell and Mitchell Baldridge of Tacoma Country & Golf Club beat pro’s Ryan Malley and Scott Erdmann 2 and 1.

Finally, in the singles event, Mandell beat Jason Aichele of Meadow Springs Country Club 7 and 6.

Mandell is heading to Arizona to work more on his game and see how far it takes him.

▪ Aichele fired a 4-under-par 68 to win the Central Washington Chapter of the PGA chapter championship on Oct. 9 at Wildhorse in Pendleton.

The tournament was supposed to be two days, but the final day was rained out.

Right behind Aichele and tied for fourth were three other area professionals: Clint Ables of Zintel Creek, Mike Kasch of Pasco Golfland, and Chris Repass of Veterans Memorial in Walla Walla. All three were at 1-under 71s.

Top amateur of the championship was Desert Aire’s Jack Eskildsen, who fired a 3-under 69.

That tournament ended the year for the CWCPGA, and Ables was named Professional Player of the Year.

Aichele was second in the standings, while Repass was third.

Eskildsen finished atop the Amateur of the Year standings, while the Tri-Cities’ Brian Barton finished second.

Richland’s Chris Indall was the Senior Amateur of the Year.

Prep roundup

Great Mid-Columbia Conference volleyball match at Chiawana on Tuesday night.

The host Riverhawks took on Richland in what was essentially a battle for the MCC title.

In a rarity, the two teams were 12-0 each going into the match. It was their only scheduled regular-season meeting.

Normally, the MCC has a double round-robin schedule. But with the addition of Hermiston this year giving the conference nine teams, coaches and athletic directors decided on going with a schedule that allowed each team just 14 matches.

It was a great night for Chiawana.

Before the match, Riverhawks coach Jim Steach, who earned his 500th career victory earlier this month, was honored by the school when it found out he will be inducted into the State Volleyball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in a few weeks at the state tournament.

Then Steach watched his Riverhawks hand Richland it’s first MCC set loss of the season; then, down 2-1, rally to beat the Bombers 3-2 for the victory. It clinches the top 4A seed to district for Chiawana, while Richland gets the No. 2 seed.

The district tournament begins Nov. 1 at various sites: Game 1, Walla Walla at Gonzaga Prep; Game 2, Lewis & Clark at Chiawana; Game 3, University at Richland; Game 4, Hanford at Mead. All matches start at 6 p.m.

It’s a modified double-elimination tournament, with the top three teams advancing to state.

Here are the MCC volleyball standings before Thursday night’s final regular-season matches: Chiawana 13-0; Richland 12-1; Walla Walla 9-4; Southridge 8-6; Kamiakin 7-6; Hanford 4-9; Hermiston 4-9; Kennewick 2-11; Pasco 0-13.

Here are the District 8 3A matches, all being played Nov. 1: Game 1, Hermiston vs. North Central (loser out), at Southridge, 5 p.m.; Game 2, Kamiakin vs. Shadle Park (loser out), at Mt. Spokane, 5 p.m.; Game 3, winner 1 at Southridge, 7 p.m.; Game 4, winner 2 at Mt. Spokane, 7 p.m.

The top two teams will advance to the state tournament.

▪ Just outside of the Chiawana gymnasium, Richland was playing Chiawana in an MCC girls soccer match and for the league’s top seed to the 4A District 8 tournament.

Richland got it with a 3-2 win.

The MCC final soccer standings look like this: Kamiakin 14-0; Richland 12-2; Chiawana 10-4; Southridge 8-6; Hanford 7-7; Walla Walla and Kennewick at 5-9; Hermiston and Pasco at 1-13.

In the 4A district tournament, the first-round matchups – all on Saturday – look like this: Game 1, Hanford at Gonzaga Prep, 3 p.m.; Game 2, University at Richland, 4 p.m.; Game 3, Mead at Chiawana, 1 p.m.; Game 4, Walla Walla at Central Valley, 1 p.m.

The top three teams advance to the state tournament.

In the 3A district tournament, the first two matches are Thursday: Game 1, Kennewick vs. North Central, at Gonzaga Prep, 6:30 p.m.; Game 2, Shadle Park at Southridge, 5 p.m. These are not single-elimination contests.

On Saturday, the Kennewick-North Central winner plays Kamiakin at Lampson Stadium at noon.

The Shadle Park-Southridge winner visits Mt. Spokane at 1 p.m.