Chattanooga, Tenn. (Sept 14, 2005) -– Michael McCoy, 42, of West Des Moines, Iowa, continued his steady play on Wednesday to easily advance to the semifinals of the 25th U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, being held at the par-72, 7,037-yard Honors Course.
McCoy will be joined in the semifinals by Kevin Marsh, 32, of Las Vegas, Nev., Carlton Forrester, 29, of Birmingham, Ala., and Steven Liebler, 46, of Irmo, S.C.
In his quarterfinal match against Brendan Hester of Northbridge, Mass., McCoy took an early lead when Hester bogeyed the first two holes. McCoy then won the par-4 fourth when he made an 18-foot birdie putt, and No. 5 when Hester bogeyed. He dropped one at the par-4 seventh with his lone bogey of the round but won the next two, making an 18-foot birdie putt on No. 9 to take a 5-up advantage.
After the two traded pars at the 10th, McCoy made back-to-back birdies on No. 11 and 12 to close out Hester, 7 and 6. The margin of victory surprised McCoy, who is playing in his ninth Mid-Am.
“It was unexpected,” he said. “I played very, very well though. Brendan kind of got off to a bad start and he never really got anything going. I kind of caught him on an off day. But I hit a lot of really good shots and felt good over the putts.”
McCoy’s semifinal opponent will be Forrester, who eliminated Kenneth Kellaney of Phoenix, Ariz. Three times Forrester found himself trailing by two holes, but came back each time. After squaring the match for good with a birdie on No. 14, Forrester won the next three holes to earn a 3-and-1 victory.
Marsh, who struggled in his third-round victory over defending champion Austin Eaton III in the third round, was pleased with his play in his 3-and-1 victory over Tripp Davis of Norman, Okla.
“I was really happy with the way I hit it today,” said Marsh. “I started hitting it solid with my driver again, and I rolled the ball really well. I didn’t make a lot, but I wasn’t as tentative with the speed as I was yesterday.”
Davis held a 2-up advantage after five holes, but Marsh chipped in from 20 yards out for eagle on the par-5, 540-yard sixth hole to cut the deficit to one. He squared the match on No. 9 when he made a 25-foot birdie putt, and took his first lead a hole later when he birdied the 11th.
“I really had a lot of fun today,” said Marsh, who was also a quarterfinalist in 2004. “I was really relaxed all day.”
Next up for Marsh is Liebler, who needed 19 holes to outlast Trey Lewis of Hendersonville, Tenn. It was the third extra-holes match for Liebler, who has played 78 holes in four matches.
“I spent a lot of money coming over here,” he said. “I just want to make sure I get in all the golf in I can.”
Match play continues Wednesday afternoon with the semifinal matches. The championship concludes with Thursday’s 36-hole final match.
Story written by Beth Murrison of USGA Media Relations. E-mail her with questions or comments at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The U.S. Mid-Amateur is one of 13 national championships conducted annually by the United States Golf Association, 10 of which are strictly for amateurs.
Chattanooga, Tenn. – Results following Wednesday’s quarterfinal round of match play at the 2005 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, being played at the par-72, 7,037-yard Honors Course.
Round of 8
Steven Liebler, Irmo, S.C. (147) def. Trey Lewis, Hendersonville, Tenn. (145), 19 holes
Kevin Marsh, Las Vegas, Nev. (142) def. Tripp Davis, Norman, Okla. (146), 3 and 1
Michael McCoy, West Des Moines, Iowa (148) def. Brendan Hester, Northbridge, Mass. (143), 7 and 6
Carlton Forrester, Birmingham, Ala. (146) def. Kenneth Kellaney, Phoenix, Ariz. (145), 3 and 1
Chattanooga, Tenn. – Pairings for Wednesday’s semifinal round of match play at the 2005 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, being played at the par-72, 7,037-yard Honors Course.
Round of 4
12:45 p.m. Steven Liebler, Irmo, S.C. (147) vs. Kevin Marsh, Las Vegas, Nev. (142)
1:15 p.m. Michael McCoy, West Des Moines, Iowa (148) vs. Carlton Forrester, Birmingham, Ala. (146)
NOTE: To view a complete match play bracket including individual match results, click the tournament link at the top of the page (amateurgolf.com Premium Membership requested)