Cashiers, NC (Sports Network) - Doug Hanzel won a pair of matches on Thursday
to capture the title of the USGA Senior Amateur Championship.
Hanzel, who in 2012 became the only player in USGA history to make match play
in the U.S. Amateur, U.S. Mid-Amateur and Senior Amateur in the same year,
defeated stroke-play medalist Chip Lutz, 3 & 2, in the semifinals before
topping Pat O'Donnell by a 4 & 2 margin in the final.
O'Donnell earned a 2 & 1 decision over Buzz Fly in the semifinals at Wade
Hampton Golf Club to earn his way into the final.
The semifinal matches were pushed back to Thursday because of rain, fog and
unplayable conditions on Wednesday. It was the first time since 2002 that both
the semifinals and championship match were contested on the same day.
Hanzel and O'Donnell traded pars at the first before Hanzel grabbed a lead he
would not lose at the second by countering O'Donnell's bogey with a par.
Another bogey by O'Donnell at the third pushed Hanzel's advantage to 2-up, but
O'Donnell bounced back with a birdie at the fourth to pull back within one.
After trading pars over the next two holes, Hanzel, the low amateur at the
last two U.S. Senior Opens, hit his approach to two feet of the pin and kicked
that in for birdie to regain his 2-up cushion.
O'Donnell later bogeyed the 10th to fall 3-down to Hanzel and the Georgia
native cruised to the win from there.
O'Donnell managed to cut his deficit back to 2-down with a par at the 12th,
but got that hole back with a par at the 15th before sealing his victory with
a birdie at the 16th.
The Sports Network