The 24th annual Maryland Amateur Stroke Play championship turned into a wide-open race yesterday, as first-round leader Justin Klein came back to the field.
Klein, 17, had 24 hours to think about a four-stroke lead in one o the state's top amateur tournaments. Still, he held up well except for three holes and ended with 76 and a 36-hole total of 143.
This created a tie for the lead with Joel Kaye of Woodholme CC who used a share of the day's low round, a par-71, to get to 143.
Woodholme members claimed three of the first five places. Kay was followed by Sheldon Kalish (72-73) and Michael Kuntz (74-71), who were tied with Buddy Peoples (72-73) of Crofton CC at 145.
Scott Seymour of Chantilly National Golf and Country Club i Centreville, Va., added a 74 to a 72 to be alone at 146, and David Fenichel of TPC-Avenel also slipped, going 72-75 for 147.
Matt Shiley, from York, Pa., and Honey Run, backed up a 71 wit a 77, and was joined at 148 by two-time Publinx titlist Walt Grabowski of Mount Pleasant and former Stroke Play champions Bob Kaestner of Baltimore CC and William Stout of Germantown CC.
The cut fell at 160, and 101 players will go in today's final round Tee times will be between 7:25 a.m and 12:10 p.m., with all play from the first tee.
Klein was even for seven holes, then slipped 3-over in two holes hitting over the 17th green to set up a double bogey and missing the 18th green for a bogey. "I wasn't concentrating," he said of the round.
On the front side, he had eight straight pars after hitting eac green in regulation, then finished with a double when he missed the green, chipped short and three-putted.
In contrast, the more experienced Kaye, a former USGA qualifie for its Amateur and Mid-Amateur events, had six birdies in his two rounds and shot the back nine in 1-under 34 each day.
Yesterday, he started at No. 10 and recorded seven 4s and pair of 3s, collecting birdies at the 10th and 18th holes and a bogey at the 17th.
For his last two appearances in this tournament, he tied for fift two years ago and tied for ninth last year.
Kalish, who has been a U.S. Amateur qualifier, two-time medalis of the Maryland State Amateur, and former Baltimore City Amateur champion, had five birdies in Friday's round, but included a double bogey at the 16th.
His second round was more consistent tee to green, but h wound up with one birdie, as he left a lot of putts short of the cup.
Kuntz, at 28 the youngest of the three past Woodholme clu champions, stayed in contention by keeping the ball in play and hitting 31 greens in two days.
For his second day, he had three birdies and three bogeys, an like many in the field found trouble with the lack of speed of the greens.
Peoples, runner-up to champion David Correll two years ago stayed in the hunt despite a 2-over 73.
He began at No. 10 with a bogey, had a birdie and three bogeys then went birdie-birdie, only to give them back at the seventh and ninth holes.
Tony Narciso, a veteran publinx player from Forest Park, had th biggest positive turnaround, going from 84 to 72, one stroke shy of his career round for the Hillen Road layout.
Later, he said he was more enthusiastic about getting the bette of his son Charles, who shot 73-154.
At the other end of the spectrum, Bill Calhoun of Crofto followed a 71 with an 84.