Putting -- good, bad and indifferent -- highlighted the play of the leaders in the third round of the annual Middle Atlantic Amateur championship at Hunt Valley Golf Club yesterday.
Marty West III, had an erratic putting round and finished with a 1-over-par 73 for a 54-hole total of 214, followed by Pat Tallent, who fell out of a tie for the lead with four putts on the 18th green for 74-216.
Tom Gramigna, a Loyola College graduate, stayed in the hunt with 72-217, but it was another two strokes back to Vince Zachetti, of Greensburg, Pa., 74-219.
Under perfect weather conditions, sunny and 80 degrees, the greens were slick and the scores were generally higher than might have been expected, given the caliber of the entries. With the field reduced to the low 40 and ties for today's final round, the 233s made it and 44 players will come back.
"Considering I missed putts from six feet four times, and knocked a ball out of bounds [No. 6], I can't believe I shot 73," West said. The Columbia CC member has won this event four times, the last in 1980.
In an up-and-down scenario, West missed it from three feet at No. 11, made it from 20 feet at No. 12, made it from 25 feet at No. 15 and missed it from three feet at No. 16. For the round, he had three birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey.
"I hit the ball very well, but [with everything else] never thought I'd be in the position I'm in."
Tallent, from Congressional CC, had a par-matching tour through 17 holes. At the par-3 closing hole, he hit his tee to 20 feet, then went short-long-miss before making it.
There were five sub-par rounds, the most of the tournament, headed by Bob Lutz of Prospect Bay, who rode a hot putter (six birdies) to a 3-under-par 69 and a total of 223.
The others were Eric Kirsch, 71-221; 1989 champion David Partridge, 70-222; Joel Kaye, 70-223; and Peter Martin, 71-226.