Collyer's ace boosts him to Cotton States title
Blake Collyer
Blake Collyer

MONROE, La. (July 29, 2018) – Two years ago at the Australian Amateur, Victorian Blake Collyer cemented a reputation for taking down players in match play no matter what the difference in ranking. He survived a playoff to slide into the 64-man match-play bracket, then took down the No. 2 seed in the first round.

Collyer, it seems, will do anything it takes to win a match. In the W.E. Cole Cotton States final, that meant an ace.

Collyer was the No. 13 seed at Bayou DeSiard Country Club, but he played his way through four rounds of matches to reach the final against Paul Gonzalez, a member of the Texas-Arlington golf team.

When it came down to Saturday’s final, Collyer seemed to be playing catch up for most of the front nine. He went 1 down when Gonzalez birdied the second hole, but made up for it with a birdie at No. 3. Bogeys at Nos. 6 and 9 also cost him.

Collyer played the back nine brilliantly, however – and flawlessly. A birdie at No. 10 brought the match back to all square, and two more birdies at Nos. 12 and 14 gave Collyer the 2-up lead.

The real heroics came at the par-3 15th, however. Collyer made an ace to go 3 up and dormie. A birdie at the par-5 16th sealed the championship, even though Gonzalez matched him there. Collyer effectively played those seven holes on the back nine in 6 under, and it earned him the victory.

Entering the Cotton States, Collyer was coming off a T-30 at the Southern Amateur and a T-33 at the Players Amateur. He won the 2017 Dunes Medal. Two years ago, Collyer advanced to the semifinals at this event.

Gonzalez, the Waxahachie, Texas native, continues to put himself in contention in summer events. He took the lead into the final round of the West Texas Amateur last week and came out with a top-5 finish, and this week threw a string of pars and birdies at Collyer to make a run at the Cotton States title.

In the end, Collyer’s fireworks on the back nine were just too much.

Results: Cotton States Amateur
WinAustraliaBlake CollyerAustralia400
Runner-upTXPaul GonzalezWaxahachie, TX300
SemifinalsMSCharlie MillerJackson, MS200
SemifinalsARLuke LongFayetteville, AR200
QuarterfinalsAustraliaKyle MichelAustralia100

View full results for Cotton States Amateur

ABOUT THE Cotton States Amateur

Originally played in 1949 as the Bayou DeSiard Labor Day Golf Tournament, the tournament's name was changed to the Cotton States Invitational in 1951 by the club's young head professional, W. E. "Winnie" Cole. He felt that the name better reflected the main states that the tournament's players originated from (and a move to mid-summer made the name a necessity later anyway). Little did Cole know that 27 years later, in 1978, the event would be renamed again, forever to be known as the W. E. Cole Cotton States Invitational Golf Tournament.

Past champions of this highly competitive, yet festive tournament include Don January and Hal Sutton. Gil Morgan, David Toms and many other PGA Tour players have also competed. The tournament field field is limited to 96 amateur participants having a verified USGA Handicap Index not exceeding 0.0. Long a match play event, the format was changed in 2021 to 72 holes of stroke play.

View Complete Tournament Information

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