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Christian Sease claims Carolinas Amateur in a Playoff
Christian Sease sits with Carolinas Amateur trophy <br>(Carolinas Golf Association Photo)</br>
Christian Sease sits with Carolinas Amateur trophy
(Carolinas Golf Association Photo)
CHARLESTON, SC (July 17, 2016) -- Eleven hours after beginning his Carolinas Amateur final round at the Country Club of Charleston, Christian Sease was crowned the 102nd champion. The 22-year-old from nearby Mount Pleasant, S.C. has been a member of the club since age five and played thousands of round there. The 22 holes he played Sunday on the par-70 championship layout will top the list. Even Saturday's round, a seven-under 63 that included a hole-in-one, will take a back seat to this crowning performance.

Sease outlasted a six hour weather delay and a four hole playoff with 2012 Carolinas Amateur champion Carson Young of Pendleton, S.C. before hoisting the Richard S. Tufts trophy as Carolinas Amateur champion. Sease's name will be etched alongside other Country Club of Charleston members including Frank Ford, III (1992) and Cordes Ford, IV (1996).

Entering the final round, Sease held a one-stroke advantage over Austin Zoller of Summerville, S.C. and two over Young. That lead dissipated after the first two holes. Young birdied each, Zoller birdied the second, and Sease went bogey-birdie to tie the trio at eight- under overall. Sease birdied the fourth before play was suspended while the lead group was playing the 230 yard par-3 6th.

Following the six hour weather delay, play resumed at 5:00 p.m. Zoller and Young were able to catch Sease when he bogeyed No. 6. The group stayed deadlocked at eight-under-par until Young birdied the par-4 13th to claim a one-stroke lead. Zoller faltered down the stretch, playing the final seven holes two-over to fall out of contention. Sease's birdie on 15 again tied him with Young. But finding the fairway bunker on 16 led to a bogey that gave the lead away. On the 72nd hole with a one-stroke advantage, Young's tee shot found an awkward downhill lie in the rough. Missing the green right, he had a 15 foot par putt to win the championship. It missed the hole and Sease's four-foot par putt forced a sudden death playoff at eight-under- par 272.

Sease and Young began the playoff on the 436 yard par-4 1st hole at the Country Club of Charleston. Each showed nerves, missing the fairway with their tee shots. Sease was forced to layup short of the green. Young hit a lag putt from 50 feet to four feet. When Sease could not get up and down, Young had a second opportunity to claim the victory. His attempt would wander right of the hole.

Moving onto the 482 yard par-4 18th as the second playoff hole, both found the green in regulation, 40 feet from the cup. Putting first, Sease knocked his ball 10 feet past the hole. Young hit another great lag putt for a tap-in par, forcing Sease to convert to extend the playoff. When his putt found the bottom of the hole, a huge sigh of relief was exhaled from the crowd of Country Club of Charleston members who had gathered to watch. "I was expecting him to make that putt," said Young.

The duo returned to the first hole to continue their sudden death playoff. Again Sease's approach shot missed the green. Again he faced an elimination putt, this time from 12 feet for par. His ball rolled into the bottom of the hole and sent the playoff back to 18. Both players' approaches on 18 both found the greenside bunker. Young played his bunker shot over the green, then missed two putts, allowing Sease's tap-in bogey to capture the title.

"This is my biggest win by far," said Sease, who will return to Winthrop University for graduate school and play a fourth year on the golf team. With the victory, both Sease and his girlfriend Ashley Sloup of Southport, N.C. - who won the Carolinas Women's Amateur in May - hold Carolinas amateur titles. When Sease walked off the 18th green as champion, he was handed a phone with Sloup on the line. "It was a special moment," Sease said with a smile.

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