After a grueling six days climbing up and down hill at the challenging O’ahu Country Club, a new open division champion was crowned on Saturday as Washington State bound Peter Jung captured the 112th Manoa Cup.
The recent Maryknoll graduate outlasted Punahou grad Remington Hirano of San Diego in a collegiate showdown for what is widely considered the most prestigious amateur golf tournament in the state of Hawaii.
“It means a lot. All my buddies have won. The guys that I play with and it’s an honor to have this under my belt with me being a member here. It’s pretty cool. It’s a great experience, I’m humbled. Blessed,” Jung told KHON2 Sports Director Rob DeMello after taking the celebratory splash into the country club’s pool.
The 36-hole final witnessed a back and forth battle with Jung taking an early 3-up lead at the first turn, only to have Hirano to storm back ending the first 18 holes in a tie creating one final round of golf for all the marbles.
Once again, Jung built another early 3-up lead and despite multiple Hirano comebacks cutting the deficit to one mid-way through the final 18, Jung was able to survive the rally ending the match with a birdie on the 16th hole to complete the 3-and-2 victory.
“Everybody is tired. It’s such a grind. I think it’s just mentally staying in it. Training for it, you just got to go. You can’t think about it. You just got to play through it,” said Jung. “I played great all week. I was putting well, hitting it well. I just knew I could do it, I just needed to stay in my lane and not let anything get in the way.”
From here, Jung will play in the U.S. Amateur Championship qualifier next week prior to packing up for Pullman ahead of his freshman season with the Washington State Cougars. According to the champ, the victory certainly provides confidence as he begins the next chapter of his golf career.
“It means that I have a chance to have a possible good career. A lot of the players that have won this tournament have accomplished a lot, so I’m looking forward to it.”