Southeastern Am: Connor Howe walks it off for the win
Connor Howe (GT Athletics)
Three shot swings can happen in an instant.
Georgia Tech’s Connor Howe had to wait for more than an instant for his play to come to fruition at the 91st Southeastern Amateur.
Paired with the overnight leader and low-man of the tournament Will Chandler (Georgia), and round one co-leader Bryce Lewis (Tennessee) in the final round, Howe needed an eagle and two birdies to claim the title on Thursday.
Beginning the day three shots back of Chandler, Howe played a clean front-nine. Carding an eagle on the par-5 4th, the Yellowjacket made the turn at 2-under on the day and one shot back of Chandler.
On the par-4 11th, disaster struck for Chandler as he scraped a double-bogey to give Howe a one-shot lead. Chandler limped into the clubhouse with a 3-over 73, good for a fourth-place finish.
With the penultimate group of Alex Goff (Kentucky), Colin Bowles (Georgia Southern), and Nicholas Infanti (North Florida) beginning the day either tied with or one-shot back of Howe kept his blinders on. Goff was the only one making a charge from the second-to-last group as he posted a final-round 3-under 67 to take the clubhouse lead at 10-under
Howe, who birdied the par-3 13th, bogeyed No. 17 following a brief weather delay to fall into a tie for the lead with Goff.
"To be honest I didn't know he [Goff] had birdied," Howe told AmateurGolf.com. "I looked and he was still at nine-under with one to go so I was like 'Okay, par would win it.' But when I got up to the green I just forgot to look at the scoreboard and was planning on getting up-and-down to win."
Needing a birdie on No. 18 to avoid a playoff, Howe stepped up to the plate, draining a walk-off birdie chip for the championship win.
"It gives me a lot of confidence," Howe said. "I'm just happy to be playing well."
ABOUT THE Southeastern Amateur
The Southeastern Amateur is a top-level amateur
golf tournament with a rich history
dating back to 1922 - when the tournament was
created by Fred Haskins. Each year,
the Southeastern Amateur has the great honor of
hosting many of the nation's top
amateur golfers, from Division I NCAA National
Champions to the nation's top Mid-
Field is limited to 90 players. The format is 72 holes
play. The field will be cut to the low 60 and ties after
$295 entry fee includes practice round, at least three
tournament rounds, and breakfast/lunch each day.
Open qualifier held the day before the tournament.
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