LEXINGTON, KY (June 9, 2011) -- Murray State's Patrick Newcomb won the 100th Kentucky State Amateur Championship by a two-shot margin Thursday at Kearney Hills Golf Links in Lexington, Ky.
Newcomb's final round 72 was a gutsy effort on a tough golf course where he prevailed over a tough opponent.
Starting the final round two shots clear of Centre College player (NCAA D-III champion) Chris Morris of Maysville, Ky., Newcomb went three shots up through the third hole. By the time Newcomb made bogey and Morris made birdie at the ninth, the two were deadlocked at the turn.
Newcomb fell behind by one shot at the 10th and didn't tie it again until the 16th. He stuck an 8-iron to eight feet, but a three putt bogey still got him back into a tie when Morris made double-bogey. Newcomb took the lead for good on the 17th with an eight-foot birdie, leaving him one shot clear going to the par-5 18th.
His 4-iron from 217 yards landed six feet from the hole on his second shot, but Newcomb wasn't sure it was close.
“Best shot I hit in the whole tournament, hands down,” Newcomb said. “Even with all the pressure, it never left the pin. At the moment it hit the green, I thought it had rolled off the back. But when we got up there and saw how close it was, I knew all I had to do was take care of it. It was a pretty good feeling.”
Newcomb carded scores of 68-69-72=209, while Morris had scores of 69-70-72=211.
The native of Benton, Ky., who will be a junior in the fall for the Racers, became only the second MSU winner of the event following Chris Wilson of Mayfield, Ky., who won it in 1992.
The history of the Kentucky State Amateur Championship isn't lost on Newcomb either. He's well aware that it started in 1911 and some famous names in the game have won it including: Bobby Nichols (1957), Frank Beard (1961, 1962), Brad Fabel (1974), Jodie Mudd (1979, 1980), Ted Schulz (1983), Steve Flesch (1986, 1988) and J.B. Holmes (2004).
“I've read every one of the names on the trophy,” Newcomb said. “That's a good list to be on. All of the texts and phone calls have been great from my friends and family. It's been a great week.”
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