- FSGA photo
has been waiting a long time to secure his first Florida State Golf Association individual title, so he had no problem with exuding a little more patience during a long weather delay during the finals of the Florida Senior Match Play Championship at the Orange Tree Golf Club in Orlando, Fla.
Riviere’s patience paid off on Wednesday, as the Sorrento, Fla. resident defeated David Anthony
, 3&1, to capture one of Florida’s most coveted senior amateur trophies. It was Riviere’s first FSGA individual title though he won back-to-back Foursomes Championships with Rick Cloninger
in 2018 and ’19.
“I have no words to describe the feeling, but I’m elated and selfishly very proud of myself for the many hours of hard practice and workouts that it took to get this win,” said Riviere.
Riviere, the sixth seed, earned a spot in the championship match by posting wins over Brian Kennedy
(1 up), Doug Snoap
(5&4), Jimmy Jones
(4&3) and Paul Royak
(3&2) to reach the final opposite Anthony, who advanced to the final as the No. 21 seed.
Anthony found himself 1-up at the turn after making a birdie on the ninth hole, but Riviere quickly fired back with birdies on holes 10 and 11 to turn the match. After the players halved the next two holes, Riviere birdied 14 to increase his lead to 2-up and had Anthony dormie after winning the 15th with a par to go 3-up.
With Riviere on the brink of a breakthrough win, the skies opened up over Orange Tree Golf Club, causing an hour and a half rain delay.
Following the lengthy interruption, Anthony kept his slim hopes alive by winning the 16th, but Riviere closed out the match with a par on the 209-yard 17th hole to claim his first FSGA individual title.
“David is a legitimate gentleman and a real pit bull of a competitor,” Riviere said of Anthony, a two-time winner of the Florida Azalea Senior Amateur. “He has a very solid reputation in amateur competition and I knew this was going to be a real tough match.
“I’ve played competitively for over 30 years and can honestly say this that this was the most difficult and satisfying win I’ve ever had. To make the cut after 36 holes and then go immediately into match play against some of the best players in the state is difficult enough and when you add the rain delays it becomes very exhausting, both physically and mentally.”
“I tried to stay mentally tough, knowing every player is going through the same experience and being equally as frustrated. I tried to use that to my advantage and stayed focus on what the end goal was.”
The end goal was the Florida Senior Match Play Championship trophy, which is proudly on display in the home of Steve Riviere.View results for Florida Senior Match Play
ABOUT THE Florida Senior Match Play
The Senior Championship is for those
over the age of 55. Two age divisions, 55-64
65 and over, will compete with one round of
stroke play qualifying followed by single
elimination match play rounds to determine
winners in each division.
View Complete Tournament Information