American Century Championship notebook: San Jose Sharks star Joe Pavelski strong in debut
STATELINE – Ten players made their American Century Championship debuts, but only four made red numbers.
San Jose Sharks star Joe Pavelski finished with 48, four better than military vet Andrew Bachelder, who had 44.
Blair O’Neal had 17 and Heather LeMaster 15. Wide receiver Golden Tate finished with 0 points.
CONCENTRATION PLUS: On the crazy 17th, Steph Curry, while Alfonso Ribeiro and Justin Timberlake were dancing down the fairway, made a diving catch of a football thrown from the beach while his playing partners covered their heads. Nice catch, but can you imagine Golden State Warriors head coach Steve Kerr’s reaction if his star guard, Curry, had injured himself?
ATTENDANCE: The crowd count was a record-setting 47,109 for the week, including a one-day record of 18,172 on Saturday. The biggest galleries belonged to Steph Curry, Justin Timberlake and Alfonso Ribeiro, who played together on Saturday and Sunday. No doubt the late addition of Curry helped immensely.
FEMALES HOLD THEIR OWN: Of the five women that started the tournament, three more than held their own, finishing in red numbers.Blair O’Neal collected 28 points after scoring 11 in the final round. Heather LeMaster finished with 15 after six on the final day. Lisa Cornwell, the Golf Channel personality, had her second five-point day and had 18.
CURRY BATTLE: Dell Curry won the three-day competition against his son, Steph. The elder Curry had rounds of seven, 13 and nine points for 29. Steph had back-to-back seven-point days and had 14 on Sunday for 28.
WITHDRAWALS: Former Atlanta third baseman Chipper Jones withdrew early Sunday morning. He had minus-13 for 36 holes… Abby Wambach withdrew after the first round … Billy Bush and Todd Helton were pre-tournament withdrawals.
KORBEL SHOOTOUT: Ex-NFL quarterback Joe Theismann won the Korbel Closest to the Pin contest on No. 17 Friday afternoon. Theismann’s shot landed 3-feet 4-inches from the cup. Finishing second was Andre Iguodala at 3-11, third was Mark Rypien at 4-5, and fourth was Mark Mulder at 4-11. Alfonso Ribeiro was fifth at 9-9. In honor of his win, The Korbel Toast Life® Foundation donated $5,000 to the local charity Take Care Tahoe.
Harrison awarded eighth annual Upshaw Scholarship: Scott Harrison boasts an impressive list of accomplishments inside and outside of the classroom. The latest feat for the Whittell High student was being awarded the eighth annual Gene Upshaw Scholarship, given in memory of the NFL Hall of Famer to a student emblematic of his legacy.
“I just want to say thank you to everyone in Tahoe as a whole,” Harrison said. “I moved here about eight years ago from London. I think moving to a place like this, where there’s so many people who want to support local kids, it’s a lot easier to be noticed.”
Harrison was presented the award during a ceremony Sunday morning, July 24, at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course during the final round of the 27th American Century Championship. Heading into his senior year, he has a 4.8 cumulative GPA while taking eight Advanced Placement courses between his last two school years — and that is where it starts.
In addition to serving as student council president and playing five sports at Whittell, Harrison volunteers in the local community and is a member of the Nevada Youth Legislature. The 17-year-old is also the co-founder of a nonprofit that provides free interview coaching for minority undergraduate college students, and is back in the states fresh off an internship at an accounting firm in Scotland.
Harrison grew up across the pond in London, and his family moved to Lake Tahoe eight years ago. During the ceremony, he expressed gratitude for the local community and the support he has been during his time in Tahoe.
“I really appreciate the people, like everyone here, who are so happy to help everyone in the community,” Harrison said while wearing a cast on his arm from a recent dirt-bike accident.
In his essay, Harrison wrote about Upshaw’s qualities and how he embodied them. After graduating from high school, he plans to intern at one of the big four accounting firms in Europe before continuing his education — he listed his favorite celebrities in this year’s ACC as Stephen Curry, Justin Timberlake and Charles Barkley.
NBC Sports and Edgewood Companies contribute annually to the $5,000 scholarship awarded to a high-achieving local high school student that possesses the characteristics Upshaw displayed during his life and playing career with the Oakland Raiders. Those qualities include community service, leadership and academic excellence.
“It’s just important to keep [Gene’s] legacy moving forward to again helping within the community,” said Terri Upshaw, Gene’s wife. “We chose Tahoe because this is where we vacationed and had a home for many years — and it felt like home to us when we came here.”
— Anthony Gentile at firstname.lastname@example.org contributed to this report.