MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (Dec. 22, 2014) — Liberty University-bound high school senior Gabriel Lench fired a final round 67 to win the 2014 South Beach International Amateur Monday afternoon.
Winning the 14th-ranked amateur tournament in the world capped off a year that included winning the Florida State High School Championship and the Florida State Amateur. The win at the South Beach International with its large number of world ranking points moves Lench from 690th in the world to 160th.
Canada’s Adam Svensson’s birdie on the last hole for a round of 68 left him alone in second place, one shot back of Lench at 10-under. Svensson’s second place finish moved him from 29th in the world to 11th.
UNC’s star freshman Ben Griffin of Chapel Hill, South Carolina placed third, two strokes back of the leader. Griffin moves up in the world rankings from 211th to 92nd with his third place finish.
The final round saw the first day of the winds that normally create difficult conditions for the players at Miami Beach. Lench’s 11-under finish set a new South Beach International Amateur mark, besting by one shot Juan Pablo Hernandez’s 2012 total. That wind didn’t stop 5th Place finisher Jack Hume of Naas, Ireland from firing a 5 under par 66, the best round of the day. Hume’s effort will certainly help him in quest to make nest year’s European Walker Cup team.
70 of the top 600 worldwide amateurs participated in this year’s SBIA, moving the tournament from 26th to 14th in the world rankings.