Hietala takes second at Nationwide Tour stop in Utah
September 10, 2008
With his former Aspen Junior Golf instructor on his bag, Ryan Hietala tied with six other players for second at last week’s Utah Championship. The finish jumped Hietala to 17th on the Nationwide Tour’s money list.
The top 25 golfers at season’s end will move on to the PGA Tour in 2009.
Hietala fired rounds of 67, 68, 67 and 66 for a 16-under-par 268. In Sunday’s final round, he made birdies on holes 15, 16 and 17 but missed an 8-foot birdie putt to finish second outright.
Aspen Junior Golf Director Alden Richards caddied for Hietala, pairing the teacher with his former student. Hietala was one of the original golfers in the fledgling local program back in the 1980s before his family moved to Tucson in 1989 so he could pursue his golfing dreams full time.
Hietala was in Aspen last month to help Richards with a fundraiser just four days before the Cox Classic in Omaha, where Hietala picked up his first professional victory in three years.
Next up for Hietala is this week’s Albertson’s Boise Open in his adopted hometown of Boise, Idaho.