West rallies to capture Amateur

October 03, 1994|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,Sun Staff Writer

Marty West III shot a 1-over-par 71, low round of the day, and came from four shots off the pace to win a record-tying fifth Middle Atlantic Golf Association Amateur championship at Baltimore Country Club's classic East Course yesterday.

The fifth title equaled Bobby Brownell's record, achieved between 1941 and 1955, and enabled West to join four-time winner Ralph Bogart in winning in at least three decades (1973, 1976, 1978, 1980, 1994).

West, 46, won it in uncharacteristic style. Known for a superior short game, particularly putting, the Rockville resident bogeyed the last three holes and still held off Jeff Thomas, not out of the lead through the first three rounds, by a stroke. West finished at 293, and Thomas, from Plainfield, N.J., 294, after a last-round 76.

Coming down the 16th fairway, West, rather suddenly in front by three strokes after a 45-foot putt fell in for birdie at the 15th, figured he could win if he made three straight pars. In an earlier round, he had missed the last three greens and played the holes 1-under par. This time, he missed the last three greens and paid for every one.

"In that stretch, I had no swing thought that could get me comfortable over the ball," he said. "Something wasn't there -- hands or tempo or legs. I got tight, and when that happens, the confidence isn't there."

There were a weak chip to 12 feet from rough short of No. 16, a six-foot downhill putt that stopped by the hole at No. 17, and a missed 10-foot putt at No. 18.

Meanwhile, Thomas, 35, a former U.S. Mid-Amateur champion, had ended a string of three bogeys with a birdie at No. 14 (his second of the round), but, with West in at 293, bogeys at the 15th and 17th left the early pacesetter a shot behind. "I knew I needed that 8-footer at 17, but it didn't break."

Then, knowing he had to birdie the 367-yard closing hole to tie, Thomas hit his second shot 50 feet right of the flagstick, but his putt never threatened the hole in stopping a foot away. Looking back, however, Thomas cited the eighth and ninth holes where he three-putted both of them to turn in 2-over-par 37. "That killed me," he said.

Marty West III, Rockville, 75-70-77-71--293; Jeff Thomas, Plainfield, N.J., 71-72-75-76294; Mark Lyons, Glendale Heights, Ill., 73-75-71-77296; Bob Vespa, Greensboro, N.C., 77-68-75-76296; Eric Kirsch, Steubenville, Ohio, 76-74-74-72296; Claudio DeLuca, Washington, 73-76-75-74298; Greg Bisconti, Mount Vernon, N.Y., 71-75-78-74298; Pat Tallent, Vienna, Va., 73-76-77-73299; John Baldwin, New York, N.Y., 76-75-73-75299;

Vince Zachetti, Greensburg, Pa., 72-75-78-76301; Jim Castagna, Sandy Spring, 73-76-78-76303; Adrian Druzgala, Ellicott City, 80-72-74-77303; Barry McCarty, Alexandria, Va., 75-77-77-74303; Buddy Peoples, Bowie, 78-69-77-79303; John Price, Chantilly, Va., 75-78-77-74304; Shane Patterson, Bethesda, 77-73-78-76304; Bob Kaestner, Glyndon, 76-79-75-75305; Bucky Erhardt, Wilmington, Del., 78-75-76-76305; Malcolm Smith, Huntington, N.Y., 76-73-78-78305; Graeme Skeen, Johannesburg, South Africa, 73-78-75-79305.

Jim Heidel, Southern Pines, N.C., 78-78-77-73306; Tim Dilli, Towson, 71-80-80-75--306; Doug Ballenger, Evans, Ga., 73-74-77-82306; Ned Steiner, Roseland, N.J., 73-77-73-83--306; Bobby Bilbo, Olney, 78-73-82-74307; David Oakley, Vienna, Va., 74-80-78-75307; Mike Cox, Lusby, 78-72-80-77307; Allen Barber, Yorktown, Va., 72-77-85-74308; Henry Blue, Butler, 78-77-76-79310; Steve Hall, Annapolis, 77-77-76-81311; Joe Records, Timonium, 77-76-79-80312; Larry Storck, Baltimore, 76-76-81-79312; Chuck Freedman, Greenbelt, 75-79-80-79313; Ben Brundred, Chantilly, Va., 81-73-79-80313; Brooks Carey, Garrison, 75-79-79-80313; Matt Margolies, Lutherville, 77-76-80-81314; Richard Klein, Phoenix, 80-78-76-83317.

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