by Jack Persons, AmateurGolf.com
PULLMAN, Wash. (July 10, 2014) — James Beale won the Pacific Northwest Men’s Amateur on Friday, but it took him a little longer than expected.
Beale, the 14-seed, and his competitor Cole Madey, the four-seed, played their 36-hole final at Palouse Ridge Golf Club to a draw, and went two extra holes before a par by Beale decided the championship.
Madey, on his part, played fantastic, shooting the stroke play equivalent of six-under par in the second 18 of the day, but when it came to sudden death, he could not pull away.
The match started fairly even, with no player taking more than a one-up lead. Things changed on 12, however, as Beale birdied four straight to move from one-down to two-up.
They would turn for the afternoon 18 with the same margin, but Madey made a quick charge on the 20th and 21st holes by converting birdies to make the match square once again.
Beale birdied the 24th and 25th to take back the two-up lead, but bogeyed the 27th to drop a hole.
He rebounded quickly with a birdie on the 28th, a long par-5, and once again he was two-up.
Things changed quickly after that.
Madey went on a birdie streak of his own, canning birdies on the 31st through 34th holes to go from two-down to one-up. The players would tie the 35th, and Madey headed into the final hole needing a tie for the championship.
Beale would not give it to him, though, as he made a clutch birdie on the 36th to force the playoff.
The players tied the first extra hole with par, but Beale finally separated himself with a par on the 38th hole, after eight lead changes and ten birdies on the day.
Beale, who finished fourth last week at the Sahalee Players near Seattle, has had quite a successful month in Washington so far.
If he manages to qualify for next year’s U.S. Open at Chambers Bay, go ahead and check him off as a dark horse.