FLOSSMOOR, Ill. (August 27, 2014) — Utilizing scores of 69, 70 and 71, Lake Bluff's Andrew Price claimed a wire-to-wire victory in the 22nd Illinois State Mid-Amateur Championship at Flossmoor Country Club on Wednesday. Price's 6-under par total bested Derek Meinhart of Mattoon by two shots. Meinhart shot an even-par 72 in the final round.
“I played well,” the 32-year old Price said following the victory. “I putted very well and drove it well, keeping the ball in play. I didn't hit my irons as well as I usually do, so getting up and down was huge for me. My short game was really good this week.”
While Price led from start to finish, victory wasn't always assured, as after a bogey at the 10th hole in the final round, he fell into a tie for the lead with Meinhart. After both players parred the next two holes, Price took the lead for good at the 130-yard par-3 13th. Price's tee shot landed 15 feet from the hole and he drained the birdie putt, opening up a one-shot gap he would not relinquish. Another birdie at the 16th, coupled with a Meinhart bogey, gave him a three-stroke advantage. Meinhart birdied the 18th.
“That birdie putt on 13 was big for me,” Price added. “It really got me going. Then I hit a great wedge shot on 16 and put it to 4 feet for birdie.”
2014 Illinois State Amateur Public Links winner Glenn Przybylski of Frankfort and reigning CDGA Senior Amateur champ Dave Ryan of Taylorville tied for third, four shots off the pace. East Peoria's Tim Sheppard finished fifth at 1-under. Flossmoor resident and member T.J. Blakemore was the only other player at par or better, carding rounds of 65 and 70 in the final two rounds to offset an opening round 81.
A total of 39 players made the 36-hole cut after Tuesday, when play was delayed twice due to storms in the area. The weather on Wednesday was a stark contrast, with sunny skies and temperatures in the mid-80s. The low 20 golfers and ties, 23 players in all, earned exemptions into next year's championship, which will again return to Flossmoor Country Club in August 2015.
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