Amateur Justin Tereshko wins North Carolina Open by five
Justin Tereshko
Justin Tereshko

KANNAPOLIS, N.C. — Completing a stellar week as an amateur at the North Carolina Open was former Transylvania University golfer Justin Tereshko, who posted a final-round 67 to capture the title by five at The Golf Club at Irish Creek.

Tereshko, now the head men's golf coach at Guilford College in Greensboro, N.C., is the third amateur to win the event in the last five years. Most notably, 2014 U.S. Mid-Amateur winner Scott Harvey was victorious back in 2011, while current pro and former Arizona State golfer Spencer Lawson won as an amateur in 2013.

Tereshko opened with 69 on day one, trailing first-round leader Rick Morton, a professional from Jacksonville, N.C., by five shots. But things got interesting on the front nine of day two as Tereshko put the golf course on "59 Watch" with his stellar seven-under par 28.

He then birdied 10 to get to eight-under, but mellowed out with five straight pars from 11 to 15. Birdies at 16 and 17 brought him close to the 60 mark, but a hole-in-one is what he needed on the par-three 18th to post the elusive 59.

Thursday's final round was bogey-free for Tereshko, as well, as he coasted to a five-shot win over fellow amateur and current Wake Forest golfer Davis Womble. In fact, aside from bogeys in the first round on holes 1 and 3, Tereshko made no blemishes the rest of the tournament.

Womble, a junior at Wake Forest, finished at 11-under for the tournament, concluding with a 67 on Thursday to finish two strokes ahead of Morton for second place. Following his first-round leading 64, Morton closed with back-to-back 70s.

The tournament proved to be a showcase of the region's best amateur players as eight of the top-11 finishers are not professional, including Womble's teammate Cyrus Stewart and William & Mary junior Davis Morrison, who tied for fourth.

Last year's runner-up, UNC-Greensboro junior Jake McGlone, shot 66 in the final round to jump inside of the top-10, tying for seventh place.

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ABOUT THE North Carolina Open

The North Carolina Open is open to both amateurs and PGA professionals. It is organized by the Carolinas section of the PGA of America. 54-hole stroke play. The field is reduced to the low 60 contestants (or 1/3 of the field if 140 or less) and ties after 36 holes.

Interesting Fact: Both state opens run by the Carolinas section, the North Carolina Open and the South Carolina Open, are the only ones in the United States that prohibit non-PGA professionals from competing. It has been played annually since 1965 at a variety of courses around the state.

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