Sam Saunders ready to defend N.M. Open title; Notah Begay III also in field

Feature photo: Sam Saunders

By Mark Smith

Enchantment Sports

Editor in Chief

In the midst of his most successful year, former La Cueva High and University of New Mexico star Sam Saunders tees it up today (Sept. 10) at Paradise Hills Golf Course in hopes of defending his title in the 66th-annual New Mexico Open.

Saunders and fellow former champions D.J. Brigman and Notah Begay III are also in the field. Top prize is $14,000 of the $85,000 purse.

Saunders has been sizzling this season — so much so, that the entire purse is less than he won in a single event in July. He pocketed a cool $100,000 for taking the title at the Colorado Open.

“When I was on the course, I really wasn’t thinking about the way it ended last year,” said Saunders, who lost a playoff last year Colorado Open to finish runnerup — which was worth $80,000 less than taking the title.

“But it sure felt great to win if this time.”

As for this week, here’s what Saunders had to say.

There will be a cut after Wednesday’s second round in the 54-hole event with the final round being held on Thursday.

See here for more information and tee times from the Sun Country Golf House.





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