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Adam Alvarez wins playoff at College Tour X Florida Winter Am
05 Jan 2022
by Kent Paisley of AmateurGolf.com

see also: Florida Winter Amateur, Mission Inn Resort - El Campeon Course, Adam Alvarez Rankings

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Adam Alvarez (Courtesy of Florida Southern Athletics)
Adam Alvarez (Courtesy of Florida Southern Athletics)

The holidays are a slower period for anyone, and Adam Alvarez was no exception. The redshirt sophomore from Florida Southern College practiced for a few hours a day instead of his usual four heading into the Florida Winter Amateur. Alvarez's adjustments on to his game throughout the week led to a win the first playoff in College Tour X history at Mission Inn Resort’s El Campeon course in Howey in the Hills, Fla.

"I wasn't sharp," Alvarez explained after his win Wednesday. "It's Christmas break, spending time with my family. I wasn't exactly my sharpest, but found everything and got it done.

"My tee shots and iron shots were good all day, all week," Alvarez said, "I just wasn't making any putts. As long as I kept it in and didn't really worry about forcing birdies, I felt I was going to come out winning."

Alvarez sat at two over par going into the final round, trailing 36-hole leader Carlo Pizzano from Loyola University Maryland by two strokes heading into Wednesday. However, Alvarez put himself into the last group after an adjustment with his wedge paid off with a hole out for eagle on the par 5 17th Tuesday from 98 yards. Battling the winter winds, Alvarez realized he was hitting his wedges too high. He moved more weight to his front foot, so the lefty could hit his wedges with a lower trajectory and have the ball spin back towards the cup.

Alvarez quickly caught up to Pizzano before taking the outright lead on the fourth. Pizzano stuggled early, playing the first five holes in 5-over Wednesday, and finished the tournament at 8-over and tying for fourth.

CM Mixon of Louisville rounded out the final group, trailing the leader by five and Alvarez by three to begin Wednesday. He nearly caught the leaders twice until breaking through on his third attempt on the 17th. The junior cut to deficit to one on the fourth but gave two shots back on the fifth and sixth to trail Alvarez by two. Mixon cut it to one again on the 10th with a birdie on the par 5. He followed with a bogey on 11 to make it a two-stroke hole.

Alvarez took charge on the 13th, birdieing back-to-back holes to rebuild a three-shot lead. With four holes left to play, Mixon responded with a birdie barrage, dropping three in a row from the 15th to the 17th to catch Alvarez heading to the last. They each parred the 54th hole and headed back to the first for the playoff.

"My tee shots and iron shots were good all day, all week" Alvarez said of his mentality heading into the playoffs, "I just wasn't making any putts. As long as I kept it in and didn't really worry about forcing birdies, I felt I was going to come out winning."

Their torrid play down the stretch continued, with the duo both birdieing the first and parring the second. Then, Alvarez broke away for the win with a par on the third, redeeming himself from his double bogey there Tuesday.

“My game wasn’t exactly in the best shape coming in,” Alvarez said, “but I figured it out as I went along. I wasn’t surprised (I found my game).”

It's Alvarez's second win in three months after winning the Orlando City Amateur in November.

* * * * *

Andrea Woods of Winthrop College Prep won the women's division with a three-day score of 246, closing the tournament with a 76 to win by nine strokes after trailing by two heading into the final round. Her most significant difference between the opening two rounds and her close, her best score of the week by seven strokes, was her putting.

“I three-putted so many times yesterday,” Woods told CollegeTourX after her win. “I think I three-putted four or five times yesterday, and I didn’t three-putt at all today.”

CollegeTourX returns in June for the Robert Trent Jones Amateur.

ABOUT THE College TOUR X at Mission Inn Resort

CTX championships are three-day, 54-hole stroke play events with no cut. Open to Male and Female college golfers who are currently on an active roster, and to junior golfers who have completed their sophomore year and meet the entry criteria. World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) points awarded, live hole-by-hole scoring. Golf carts are included in the entry but not required.

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