Golf: Atomic City has big field for 2008

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By Mike Cote

The biggest local golf tournament of the year will be a little bigger this year than it has in the recent past.

The Atomic City Invitational, which starts with qualifying Wednesday morning, has 120 players scheduled to compete this year, the biggest field the tournament has attracted in four years.

Wednesday’s qualifying is scheduled for 7:30 a.m. with 37 competitors trying to get into the 16-man championship flight. Thursday’s match play competition begins at 8 a.m.

The Atomic City Invitational is the oldest match play tournament in the state, which Los Alamos Golf Course PGA professional Donnie Torres believes is part of the attraction.

Players this year are coming from all across the state and across the country, traveling from as far away as Washington and North Carolina.

In all, 42 players, more than a third of the field, are from out-of-town.

The tournament is so big this season another flight was opened to accommodate everyone who wanted to play.

In all, 80 players will take part in the men’s division, up from 64 in 2007, along with 28 seniors and 12 women.

“If anyone’s looking for me, I’ll be the one running around with my head cut off,” Torres joked.

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