Michael Deo of Montclair Golf Club today became the 24th New Jersey State Golf Association Mid-Amateur Champion, defeating Brian Komline of High Bridge Hills 4 & 2 in Wednesday's Championship match. Deo, in his first year of eligibility for the Championship at 30 years of age, secured the Gigi Carnevale Championship trophy at the par-71, 6740 yard Eagle Oaks Golf Club in Farmingdale with excellent play throughout the contest.
After leading Komline 1-up after nine holes, both players battled until Deo began to take control with a birdie on the par-4 13th hole, followed by another birdie (via concession) on the par-4 fourteenth hole to take the lead, 3-up. The players halved the par-4 fifteenth hole (each shooting par), which led to Deo’s par on the par-3 sixteenth hole to close out the match 4&2.
Deo’s victory gave him his second career NJSGA Championship, with his first coming in the 1994 NJSGA/William Y. Dear Junior Championship at Rumson.
Said Deo of his victory: “I’m thrilled to win my second NJSGA Championship. Eagle Oaks was very enjoyable- it was a great layout, especially the greens”.
In total, Deo played outstanding golf over the three-day match play Championship and was not tested beyond his fifteenth hole until today’s finale. Monday’s first round win came at the hands of Glenn Stephenson, whom Deo dispatched 4 & 3. Andrew Stewart drew Deo in the round of sixteen, where the eventual Champion once again prevailed 4 & 3. Tuesday’s quarterfinal match pitted Deo against reigning NJSGA Player of the Year Jay Blumenfeld, and again Deo came away victorious 5&4.
Deo’s semifinal opponent was 2001 Champion Harris Podvey, who became the fourth player eliminated by the Champion on Tuesday afternoon, 5&4. The honor roll of opponents whom Deo bested in the Championship culminated with his victory today over Komline, the 2005 NJSGA Open Champion.
By virtue of his win today, Deo will be exempt from qualifying for next year’s 25th Mid-Amateur Championship, which will be held at the Spring Lake Golf Club in early May of 2008.
For full results, click on the "see also" link at top of article and use the results tab.
--Story courtesy NJGA