Marc Dull (FSGA photo)
For the first time in 20 years, a mid-amateur player raised the Amateur trophy at the end of the championship. Marc Dull captured the seven-shot victory at the 106th Amateur Championship on Sunday at Turtle Creek Club, carding a final-round 70 to secure the victory.
"This means a lot," Dull said. "This is the one I wanted and I've been close so many times."
This is the sixth FSGA championship for Dull and his first Amateur title.
The Lakeland native took home the victory at 17-under 271, the lowest total score in Florida Amateur history. With this victory, Dull becomes the first mid-amateur player to win the Amateur Championship since Richard Maddox in 2003. His seven-shot win is the largest margin of victory at Amateur since Sam Horsfield’s 11-shot win 2013.
Dull began the final round with a four-shot lead over the field at 15-under 201, after rounds of 68-66-67 to open the championship. The past FSGA Player of the Year got off to a steady start playing the first four holes at even par.
"I was trying not to change too much." Dull said. "I honestly hit it better today than i did the first three days. I just drove it really good today and kept it in play all day."
His first birdie of the day came on the fifth moving him to 16 under. Jonah Wasserstrom, who began the day in second place at 11 under, finished the fifth with a bogey to extend Dull’s lead to six shots. Dull carded a bogey-free front nine, making the turn at 16 under for the championship.
Making the turn to the back side, Dull played his first five holes at 2 under to extend his lead to seven shots, with birdies on the 12th and 14th. His only hiccup of the day came on par-4 15th hole, with his drive finding the shell cart path left of the fairway and his approach missing the green on the right. He finished with a double bogey but bounced back quickly with a birdie on the 16th.
After a par on the 17th hole, Dull’s drive on the 18th hole found the middle of the fairway. When his second shot safety found the green, Dull threw his hand in the air and dropped his club. He two-putted to finish with a final-round 70 and secure the Amateur victory.
Dull finished the championship with rounds of the 68-66-67-70, one of the only two players to finish the championship with four under-par rounds or better. He finished the week with 23 birdies, the most in the field, and only four bogeys over four rounds.
"I think this shows that us, mid amateurs can still play," Dull said. "These kids are getting so good now and they can hit it so far. But guys like me, and a bunch of the other mid-ams know how to get it in the hole."
Cooper Smith and Jay Brooks both put together solid final rounds, finishing the championship in a tie for second at 10-under 278. Smith used rounds of the 73-66-68-71 to take a share of second place, while Brooks posted rounds 72-65-72-72-69 – his second-round 65 was the low round of the championship.
Blanton Farmer and Wasserstrom finished the championship in a tie for fourth at 9-under 279. Farmer was the other player to put together four under-par rounsd this week, ending the championship with rounds of 70-71-68-70. Wasserstrom carded the second most birdies of the week with 20 on the week.
Story courtesy Florida Golf Association
ABOUT THE Florida State Amateur
Started in 1914, the Amateur Championship is
the oldest continuous sporting event in the
state of Florida. The field will include exempt
players and players who have qualified
18 holes of stroke play at one of the qualifying sites.
The Championship features a field of 168
players split alternately on two golf courses
the first two days. The field is reduced to the
low 70 and ties after the first two rounds to
play an additional 36 holes of stroke play.
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