The battle for the 95th Crump Cup title is down to the final four players, after the first two rounds of match play were completed on Saturday at Pine Valley Golf Club.
The four who remain are no strangers to major mid-amateur titles, with two U.S. Mid-Amateur champions and two Crump Cup past champions still alive as the tournament heads into its final day.
Related: Osberg takes medalist honors at Crump Cup
The 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Matt Parziale (Brockton, Mass.), who started stroke play on the outside looking in but shot the low round of the second day to make it to the championship bracket, won two matches to take his place in the semifinals. The 32-year-old Parziale took out Scott Shingler in the morning match 4 and 3, and then went an extra hole to survive Michael Castleforte in the afternoon.
Scott Harvey (Kernersville, N.C.), himself a winner of the U.S. Mid-Amateur in 2014, had an easier time, taking his two matches 4 and 3, then 5 and 4. The 41-year-old has made his deepest-ever run in the Crump Cup, after twice making it as far as the quarterfinals.
They will be joined by two former Crump Cup champions.
Michael Muehr (McLean, Va.), winner of the 2008 and 2014 Crump Cups, will be trying for his third title at the age of 47. He defeated two of the top mid-ams in the country on Saturday, dispatching 2018 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Kevin O'Connell and then outlasting last week's U.S. Mid-Am runner-up Joseph Deraney.
2009 Crump Cup champion Skip Berkmeyer (Town & Country, Mo.) beat 2016 U.S. Mid-Am champ Stewart Hagestad in the morning, then beat the stroke play medalist Jeff Osberg in the afternon.
That three of the final four players are over the age of 40 is an indication of the course knowledge and experience often required to win at Pine Valley Golf Club.
The seniors played one match on Saturday, and they too are down to the final four. Two of the players set to face off on Sunday morning couldn't be any more familiar with each other.
The defending champion Gene Elliott, and four-time Crump Cup winner Mike McCoy, are longtime competitors and longtime four-ball partners. Both are from W. Des Moines, Iowa and McCoy is trying to join Elliott as they only players in Crump Cup history to win in the open and senior divisions.
Elliott only went 13 holes on Saturday, defeating 2017 Crump Senior champion John McClure (Austin, Texas) 6 and 5. McCoy beat 2008 Crump Senior champ Steve Smyers 2 and 1.
Steve Harwell (Mooresville, N.C.), who was a quarterfinalist in his first Crump Cup senior appearance last year, and Arnie Cutrell (Greensburg, Pa.), who just last month became eligible for senior golf, are the other two semifinalists.
Crump Cup Sunday is the only day of the year that the public will be invited onto the grounds to watch the final matches. The championship, second and senior championship flights will go off of the 1st tee, while the third flight and senior second flight will go off the 10th. Gates will open at approximately 12:45pm.
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ABOUT THE Crump Cup
The George A. Crump Memorial Tournament --
hotelier and course architect most famous for
Pine Valley -- is arguably the premier mid-
event in the United States. The invitational field
made of of top players from around the United
and the UK. The format for the four days is two
of stroke play qualifying, followed by four
match play. Players are flighted according to
qualifying position, and a separate Senior flight
includes three of those flights. Jay Sigel has won
event the most times, with nine victories
1975 and 1993.
Normally, the public is invited to attend the Sunday
final matches but that tradition has been suspended.
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