Dan Sullivan Wins Second Consecutive Player of the Year Award
December 12, 2017
Balancing family and golf is no simple task. Dan Sullivan has mastered both, as he’s the loving father to two young children and now a two-time SCGA Player of the Year. Sullivan earned 1,500 points in 2017 – 465 points more than second place Tim Hogarth – and ran away with his second consecutive honor.
His year was jumpstarted with an incredible display of golf at the SCGA Mid-Amateur Championship, firing 67–66 to open the tournament before coasting to a final round 72 for a four-shot victory, earning 500 points. With the win, Sullivan earned a berth in the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship where he advanced to the semifinals.
Sullivan added to his strong 2017 campaign by advancing to the quarterfinals of the SCGA Match Play Championship, finishing in fourth place at the SCGA Stableford Team Championship and securing a 10th place finish at the SCGA Public Links Championship.
What does it mean to win the SCGA Player of the Year Award?
“It’s always a goal for me at the beginning of the season. It means a lot of things and for starters, it means that I simply played in a lot of events! But, jokes aside, I obviously had a good year on the course. It’s definitely a meaningful accomplishment and to be at the top of the list with all the great players we have in Southern California, its pretty special.”
How would you recap your 2017 golf season?
“It’s funny because I was struggling at the beginning of the year. It’s not unusual because I do take some time off over the winter and don’t play or practice at all. Even though I’m a slow starter, I was really frustrated with how I was playing early on. Coming into the SCGA Mid-Amateur, I had no inclination that I’d perform well. A couple days before that event, I felt completely lost with my game and I was burning the midnight oil on the range when I finally figured a little something out. I then proceeded to birdie the first three holes of the championship and went on to win. That morphed into a lot more confidence.”
What did winning the SCGA Mid-Amateur do for your confidence?
“It significantly elevated my confidence, especially as I was coming in with little to none. I played some of the best golf I’ve ever played in the first two round of that championship (11-under through two rounds). It was an irreplaceable confidence boost and let me know that I’m always capable of competing at the highest level. It’s always there, I just have to go find it.”
Where does golf fit into your everyday family life?
“It helps having a wife who’s very understanding of my competitiveness. It’s always been a balancing act but now that we have two young children, being able to play in competitive events will likely happen less over the years. I’ll still always find time to play in the bigger events but I’m also 50 years old now so I’ll begin to transition into senior events. I expect my wife to continue her awesome support and I’ll try to play as much as I can.”
What’s next for your golf career? Have you goals changed?
“My goals haven’t changed but I do have more confidence that I can achieve the very high expectation goals like winning a U.S. Mid-Amateur or winning a U.S. Senior Amateur. Being able to make it to back-to-back U.S. Mid-Amateur semi-finals has given me the confidence that someday I can actually win the thing!”