Keith Decker (L) and Justin Young (R) co-lead at Williamsburg GC
WILLIAMSBURG, VA (September, 16, 2017) — Twenty-seven years ago, Keith Decker won the first of his 28 Virginia State Golf Association championships in the VSGA Mid-Amateur at Williamsburg Golf Club. Sunday, he’ll have a chance to win at Williamsburg once again.
Decker (Chatmoss CC) posted a 3-under 69 Saturday in the second round of the 41st VSGA Mid-Amateur Championship, leaving him tied atop the leaderboard with Justin Young (Ballyhack GC) at 137 heading into Sunday’s third and final round.
Related: Justin Young starts quickly at Virginia Mid-Amateur
They’ll be joined in the final grouping by John Rosenstock (Elizabeth Manor G&CC), who followed his first-round 70 with a second-round 69 and is two shots back of the lead. The final grouping tees off at 10:30 a.m.
Past Mid-Amateur champion Scott Shingler (Dominion Valley CC) is alone in fourth at 140 after posting a second consecutive 70. Lee Fisher (Poplar Grove GC) and McLain Leberte (Farmington CC) returned identical scores of 71-70 over the first two days and enter Sunday tied for fifth, four strokes back. Two-time State Open of Virginia champion Roger Newsom (Elizabeth Manor G&CC) shot 70 on Saturday and is five back of the leaders.
Decker has made only three bogeys over the tournament’s two days, with two of them coming on No. 1. He bogeyed the first two holes Saturday before settling down, and made a run of three straight birdies to close the front nine.
“I hit terrible second shots both times,” Decker said of his struggles on No. 1. “I mean they were awful, both of them. I missed the green both times. Just bad shots.”
Young got to 9 under for the tournament after making a birdie on the par-3 12th hole on Saturday, but he gave back two shots down the stretch with bogeys on 13 and 18. Young, the low amateur at the 2015 Delta Dental State Open of Virginia, is seeking his second VSGA championship, having won the final edition of the VSGA Public Links Championship in 2013.
“It’ll be fun to play with Keith tomorrow,” Young said. “Not only is he a friend, but playing with a guy who is as decorated as he is, you learn from somebody like that.”
Rosenstock, a finalist in the 2007 VSGA Amateur Championship, spent some years away from competitive golf but has ramped up his schedule this year. He won the Portsmouth Amateur and was runner-up at the Valentine Invitational, and his side was runner-up at the VSGA Four-Ball Stroke Play Championship in May.
He opened and closed his round of Saturday with bogeys but made four birdies in between.
“Same story. I’ve been striking the ball really well both days,” Rosenstock said. “Putting has been holding me back. But I’m very happy with the way I’m hitting the ball. I’m hanging in there. But I’m just making some costly errors on the greens.
“I’m going to go at the flag and keep swinging confidently as I have been. I just need a few putts to fall early to sort of get in the right mindset. I’m looking forward tomorrow. It’s a chance to go low, so we’ll see what happens.”
Forty-six players shot 158 or better to make the cut for Sunday’s final round, including Bob Rotella (Keswick GC), who at 68 is the oldest player in the field. Earlier this year, his side won the 5th VSGA Super Senior Four-Ball Championship at the Homestead.View results for VSGA Mid-Amateur
ABOUT THE VSGA Mid-Amateur
54-hole stroke play competition (18 holes per day),
with the field being cut to the low 45 and ties for the
final round. Open to VSGA members who will be at
least 25 years of age holding an active GHIN
issued by a licensed VSGA Member Club in good
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