BLUE BELL, PA (June 19, 2005) -– A tenacious Clint Deibert of Doylestown CC overcame a sluggish beginning and a resolute Tug Maude of Merion GC, 2&1, for the 105th Amateur Championship title on Saturday at Cedarbrook CC. Deibert is the first player from Doylestown CC to win the championship. In fact, he is the first Doylestown CC representative to reach the final match.
"It feels great. I said the other day, this is why we play these things to get to this point and hopefully succeed," said Deibert, 23, of Doylestown, Pa.
Added Maude, 22, of Rosemont, Pa., "It’s been a real memorable week. I definitely exceeded my expectations and goals for the week. It’s tough losing, but I don’t feel like I lost the match. I feel like Clint won it. You can live with that."
This was the first Amateur final for both players.
Deibert, who was seeded 6th after qualifying, proved unyielding in the 36-hole final. In the duration of five holes spanning the morning and afternoon rounds, Deibert went from 3-down to 2-up. He also entered the final nine 1-down before finishing strong and closing the match out on No. 17.
"You can’t make bogeys and in the first 18 holes I made five of them," said Deibert of the difference. "That’s why I was down early. The putt on 18 [in the morning] got some momentum going. I made only one bogey in the final 18 holes."
Deibert actually entered the 17th hole of the morning round down three. Maude, who was the fifth seed after qualifying, fostered an early advantage on a strong middle move in which he captured holes No. 12, 14 and 15. Maude knocked a 6-iron from 188 yards onto the par 5, 12th hole (516 yards) in two strokes for birdie, carded a par on the 443-yard 14th hole (par 4) for a victory as Deibert failed to get up-and-down from the grass bordering the greenside bunker and recorded a routine par with Deibert in the left tree line on No. 15 (par 4, 427 yards).
However, just as Deibert appeared to be on the verge of going 4-down on the 17th hole (par 4, 452 yards), and in serious trouble, he made a nice up-and-down two-putt bogey from a buried lie in the bunker to the left of the green. Maude found the fairway bunker, landed 30 yards short with his second shot and then after his chip to eight feet three-putted for double bogey.
Deibert applied more pressure on the 18th hole when he drained a 10-foot birdie chance from below the cup. Maude found more bunker trouble off the tee and his second shot ran long of the green.
Maude led 1-up with 18 holes to go.
Deibert’s rolled continued early into the afternoon session.
A par-birdie-par start pushed Maude, a recent graduate of Wake Forest University, 2-down.
"I started feeling good," said Deibert. "I started feeling comfortable with my swing."
Added Maude, "He started putting the pressure on me and my tempo got messed up a little."
However, Maude proved steadfast and refused to go away.
He registered a 15-foot downhill birdie on No. 4 (par 4, 376 yards), the 22nd hole, and then after Deibert appeared to chip it relatively tight on No. 6 (par 5, 565 yards), the 24th hole, he responded by getting inside his opponent’s distance and sinking the putt (15 feet).
On No. 9 (par 3, 213 yards), hole 27, Maude moved back in front. Both players 2-irons ran long of the green. Maude got up and down. Deibert did not.
"That’s my favorite hole," said Deibert of going to the downhill 10th (par 5, 539 yards).
Rightly, so. He laced a drive that just trickled into the rough. His wedge from 141 yards landed safely on and he two-putted for birdie. Maude found the other ride of the fairway rough and had to chip out. The match was All Square.
The two halved No. 11 but a wayward drive to the right by Maude on No. 12 (par 5, 510 yards) and an unlucky second shot that clipped the final tree near the green put him behind the 8-ball. Deibert launched a stellar 6-iron from 191 yards that landed in the center of the green and a two-putt birdie pushed his edge to 1-up.
On No. 13 (par 3, 220 yards), Deibert took a step closer to victory.
Deibert found the right greenside bunker off the tee. Maude’s drive landed next to a tree to the left of the green. Maude went first and left himself 15 feet for par. Deibert’s sand shot finished rolling three feet past the hole. Maude missed his chance and Deibert moved two ahead.
"I had a great lie," said Deibert of the bunker shot. "I felt great over the shot. I just had to execute."
Deibert applied, in essence, the final blow on No. 15 (par 4, 445 yards).
Deibert’s approach rolled to the back left of the hole. Maude made a miraculous recovery from under a tree to the right of the fairway and it appeared a pair of pars would keep the match in doubt. However, Deibert, who said he’s been in the spot all week, rolled in a 30-foot uphill six-foot breaker.
"To be honest I was just trying to get down there and make a four," said Deibert.
Instead, he won the Amateur Championship.
A Deibert hiccup on No. 16 (par 3, 174 yards) continued the match, but he drained an 18-foot par save after coming out of the right rough to clinch the win.
For complete match play bracket results, click on the tournament link above (amateurgolf.com membership required).