Las Vegas’ Rio Secco Golf Course Challenges Best of WAC

Image April 28, 2009 (UPDATE 4/30)Rio Secco Golf Club is quickly becoming one of the most historic Las Vegas golf courses. Big events are common place at this Rees Jones-designed Las Vegas golf course beauty. The latest being played at Rio Secco is the 2009 Club Glove WAC Men's Golf Championship . Other Las Vegas golf events currently played at Rio Secco include Tiger Jam and the Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge, and this course is a past host of UNLV Golf's home tournament. Add into the mix that many of the world's best golfers practice at the onsite Butch Harmon School of Golf, and Rio Secco is a place to be and be seen in Las Vegas. Unfortunately, one former Las Vegas high school star had a tough start.

"For the last few years our coaches were the ones pushing for a neutral site, and we looked at several potential locations before selecting Rio Secco Golf Club," said Elizabeth Kampfe, WAC Director of Championships, several months ago when the new neutral golf course site was announced. "But everything that the staff and management was willing to do for us, plus the quality of the golf course made selecting Rio Secco a great decision." While Rio Secco is a neutral site, Utah State University is listed as the host school. Rio Secco Golf Club is open to the public.

Following the first round of the WAC tournament that is presented by Club Glove, New Mexico State had a five stroke lead over Fresno State. The Aggies shot a total of 282 in the first round at the 7,332-yard, par-72 Rio Secco Golf Club. New Mexico State had three players in the top 10, led by Travis Reid who was tied for the individual lead with Fresno State's Grant Doverspike at 5-under par (67). Utah State's Tyler Labrum was in third place after a 3-under par 69. A total of 10 players shot under par on Monday. The players are gunning for Tiger Woods' course record of 64 that was shot the week before he won the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

New Mexico State was 6-under par (282), followed by Fresno State at 287 (-1). Idaho finished at even par and in third place with a 288. San Jose State was in fourth following a 292 (+4), Utah State was in fifth with a 293 (+5) and in sixth was Nevada at 295 (+7). Louisiana Tech was seventh with a 296 (+8) followed by Hawai'i (306, +18) and Boise State (307, +19).

Former Las Vegas high school standout Chris Plappert had a tough time in his return home. Plappert, who is a sophomore at the University of Nevada, was disqualified after he signed a wrong scorecard. Plappert was making his fifth appearance for the team in his sophomore year. He had averaged 76 for 12 rounds with a best finish of 33rd at the John Burns Intercollegiate. Plappert was ineligible for the overall tournament, but was still teeing it up in the second and third rounds in the five play/four score team format.

Plappert was a 2007 graduate of Arbor View High School here in Las Vegas and was named the 2006 Southern Nevada Player of the Year. He was also a three-time All-Southern Nevada selection (2005-07) and earned Sunset Region Player-of-the-Year honors. He was the top-ranked junior golfer in the state and won the Nevada State Junior Championship in 2006 and finished fifth as a junior in 2005. He also finished fifth at the 2006 AJGA Coto de Coza tournament and was a three-time Tournament Director Award winner. He lettered and captained his golf team all four years and was a member of the National Honor Society.

Rio Secco Golf Club, owned and operated by Harrah's Entertainment, offers a Las Vegas resort golf experience that is played through steep canyons, on top of desert plateuas overlooking the Las Vegas valley, and within deep desert washes. Rio Secco Golf Club has garnered several local and national awards including Best Overall Las Vegas Golf Experience by VegasGolfer Magazine, a Top 100 Golf Course by Golfweek Magazine, and a Top 10 Golf Resort in America by USA Today, among other accolades.

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