For the BYU golfers competing in the first round of match play the 2014 Utah State Amateur Championships Wednesday at the Ogden Golf and Country Club, things couldn't have gone much better.
Check out the Cougar results:
Cole Ogden, the defending state amateur champion? Won, 3-and-2.
Mike Jurca? Won, 3-and-2.
Tommy Higham? Won, 2-and-1.
CJ Lee? Won, 3-and-2.
Austin Banz, an incoming freshman? Won, 2-and-1.
BYU went 5-for-5 as the state amateur field was paired from 64 golfers down to 32. Jurca said that's just what he hoped to see.
"I'm pulling for my teammates," Jurca said. "I'd love to see all of the Cougars in those final spots. Hopefully I'm one of them."
Jurca's dream won't happen this year, since he is in the same quarter of the bracket with Ogden and Banz, while Higham and Lee are in another quarter of the bracket.
Still, getting two BYU golfers into the four semifinal spots is still in play, thanks to the solid performances on Wednesday.
Perhaps the biggest question mark coming in was Ogden, who had only managed to shoot a 6-over-par during the first two rounds and would've been eliminated if he hadn't had the exemption of being defending champ.
"In the last two days, I didn't play great," Ogden said. "It was hard to get motivated and focused, knowing I was already through to match play. My game wasn't great, but I felt pretty positive coming in."
Jurca said he was confident about how Ogden would come out for the first day of match play.
"I had no doubt that he would come out and get it done," Jurca said. "He's the defending state amateur champ for a reason and he's not going to go down easy. Someone is going to have to play great to take him down."
Ogden explained that getting off to a strong start Wednesday was big for him.
"I didn't hit a great drive but I stuck my approach to within six feet and made the putt for a birdie," Ogden said. "I ended up 3-under on the front nine, so that was a good start."
Ogden ended up with four birdies and no bogeys on his way to defeating Bubba Hall.
Jurca's match against Jason Gates proved to have a little more drama.
"I was two-down after the first two holes," Jurca said. "I was feeling the pressure and not hitting the ball well. But I knew I had to be tough, and grind through to get back in it. I ended up one-up at the turn and just kept grinding."
Jurca pointed to a solid drive, approach and putt on hole No. 10 for a birdie as a big confidence booster on his way to the victory.
Perhaps the most dramatic win came from Maple Mountain senior Kai Ruiz, who was two-down with four holes to play. A couple of spectacular shots tied things up and the Golden Eagle ended up winning 1-up.
Things didn't go as well for Golden Eagle teammate Mark Mortensen, who shot in the 60s but still lost to Devon Purser, 3-and-1.
That's just how things go in this type of competition.
Both Ogden and Jurca said they enjoy the one-on-one aspect of match play and pointed to consistency as the key to being successful.
"You have to take it one swing at a time," Ogden said. "You can be in the middle and your opponent can be in the trees, but then he hits a miraculous shot onto the green and the pressure is on you. You have to keep an even keel."
Jurca added: "You have to be tough. You can't show your competitor that you are down or are conceding. You have to maintain a level head because each shot can change the match."
Both Cougars said they look forward to a chance to line up against one of the other BYU golfers.
"It's fun to go against a teammate," Ogden said. "There's always bragging rights."
Other golfers with Utah Valley ties to win included Carl Jensen (5-and-3), Jason Hargett (1-up), Jesse Clark (3-and-2), Aaron Yeates (2-and-1), Chris Hermanson (2-up) and Brady Stanger (3-and-2).
The 2014 Utah State Amateur Championship continues at Ogden Golf and Country Club with the rounds of 32 and 16 on Thursday with the winners making the quarterfinals on Friday.
For the complete bracket, go to UGA.org.