South Shore’s Egan wins Pro Masters Division at Tahoe Pro/Am
By Jeremy Evans
Tribune staff writer
Four years ago, South Shore’s Matt Egan was spending his days pinned to a couch. Sad and unsure about the direction his life was headed, he picked up a golf disc one day.
Ever since then, whenever he ventures onto the disc golf course, memories of his chemotherapy and his four herniated discs, remain safely tucked away. Off the course, though, the memories resurface, as did the reality that he has continually suspended several necessary surgeries.
That’s why he spends most of his time on the course.
“This is my rehabilitation, this is about all I do,” said Egan, a cancer survivor who’s been in Tahoe for eight years. “If it wasn’t for this sport, I’d probably be in a nuthouse. This saved me. I was bored stiff, going crazy, sitting at home with nothing to do.”
This weekend at Bijou Community Park, Egan made a triumphant return to the sanctuary where he learned how to play disc golf, where he learned how to live again. The 43-year-old Egan recorded a two-day total of 238 (5 under) to win the pro masters division at the Tahoe Pro/Am disc golf tournament.
Since turning pro last November, Egan’s finished in the money in three of the four tournaments he’s entered. This weekend’s tournament at Bijou included eight different divisions playing 27 holes on Saturday and another 27 holes on Sunday.
“This is pretty much a dream come true,” said Egan, who won $284 for finishing first. “This is where I learned how to play four years ago. To go basically four summers here in Tahoe and now I’m winning pro events, this is a great thing. As a local, you always hope to represent your course well.”
While Egan was busy winning the 40-and-over field, it was a 20-year-old Cabrillo College student named Nate Doss who dominated the conversation in the pro open division.
Doss, who has four top-5 finishes in Professional Disc Golf Association major events this season, finished with a two-day total of 216 (27 under). He was at 28 under after Saturday’s action and carded a 1 over on Sunday, which was good for a three-stroke win over Gregg Barsby (24 under).
“For me personally, it was a fabulous success,” said Doss, a former amateur junior world champion. “I could not have asked for more as far as playing goes. Physically, it was just brutal. Today we played a huge course that took more than 5 hours. Saturday, we played the shorter positions.”
Sunday’s beefed-up course averaged about 450 feet per hole, while Saturday’s shortened course averaged between 350-400 feet per hole. That meant more walking for Egan, who leaves this week for his hometown of Allentown, Pa., where he will also compete July 25-30 in the PDGA Professional Disc Golf World Championships.
“I’m going back to spend time with mom and the rest of the clan that still lives there,” said Egan, who shot 4 over on Sunday. And I’m going to go there with this memory the whole time. For me, this is something I will never forget.
“But I don’t have much longer playing this game. My body’s just falling apart, probably mostly from the chemotherapy. It’s hit me real big. That makes this win a lot bigger. “
Tahoe Pro/Am disc golf tourney
at Bijou Community Park
Pro Open Division: Nate Doss
Pro Master Division: Matt Egan
Pro Grandmaster Division: David Malolepszy
Advanced Master: Doug Werner
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