Tyler Strafaci won his second-straight at the Palmetto Amateur
Never down, never out.
made it back-to-back weekends being crowned the champion with a comeback win at the Palmetto Amateur.
Last weekend, Strafaci made history at the North & South Amateur as he followed in his grandfather Frank’s footsteps as a North & South champion. Frank won back-to-back championships in 1938 and 1939.
Related: North & South Amateur: Tyler Strafaci wins one for the family
As for this weekend, Strafaci continued to build off of what has been a dominant stretch of golf.
54-hole leader Caleb Surratt
who made the tournament via a Monday qualifier, could not keep his remarkable week of golf rolling as he saw his 5-shot 36-hole lead close to just a single shot following a one-over 71 on Friday. Coming into the day, Strafaci led the pack of challengers on Saturday which included South Carolina’s Caleb Proveaux
(-7) as well as a solid group of eight golfers who sat either four or five shots off of Surratt when the final group teed off at 9:30 AM local time.
Related: Surratt stumbles, still leads at Palmetto Amateur
Related: Palmetto Amateur: Mon. Qualifier Caleb Surratt posts 63 to lead
For much of the front nine, Surratt and Strafaci mirrored each other with two bogeys a piece through seven holes. On the par-4 eighth, a two-shot swing saw Strafaci take the lead and the momentum.
With the lead in hand, Strafaci did not look back. Making birdies on Nos. 10, 13, and 14 with a lone bogey on the par-3 11th, Strafaci had it on cruise control until he reached the 18th tee.
As CJ Easley
and Greyson Porter
, both at nine-under awaited to see if there would be a playoff, Strafaci pulled his tee shot to the left side as his ball nestled on a pine straw cart path.
"If my dad was caddying, he probably would've told me not to take relief because I had a clear shot," Strafaci told the Aiken Standard. "The thing is, I'd rather have grass under my ball and I had to hit probably a 5-yard draw just to get to the pin. It wouldn't have really mattered, because I would've hit the same golf shot. I just wanted a consistent turf that I could hit off of."
Taking free relief, Strafaci fired a dart right at the pin leaving him a 10-foot birdie chance. Cleaning up for par, he claimed his second title in as many weeks.
Despite never feeling comfortable on Palmetto Country Club’s green complexes, the Georgia Tech senior made 18 birdies and an eagle en route to the win.
"I've been playing really good the last couple weeks. I hit the ball phenomenally this week. I just didn't have a real good feel for the greens out here – I didn't make many putts," he said. "That kind of explains my slow start the last two days. I was 2 over on the front side pretty much both days. I just couldn't make a putt. Hit it pretty good, and then just really played good on the back. It was mostly ball-striking. To win this golf tournament, great field, great golf course, it means a lot."
ABOUT THE Palmetto Amateur
72-hole stroke play event held on a classic
MacKenzie design. The field of 84 is
applicants based on handicap, participation
amateur golf events and competitive
previous Palmetto Amateurs and other
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