Thomas Birdsey Wins The Texas Amateur
June 17, 2012
Courtesy of www.txga.org
CARROLLTON, Texas - Wake Forest rising-sophomore Thomas Birdsey birdied four of his final seven holes on Sunday to claim the Texas Amateur Championship. Birdsey shot rounds of 67-68-68 (-10) over the three days at The Honors Golf Club.
The excitement started quickly as several players bolted to the top of the leaderboard early. Nathan Weant of Hallsville was the first to make things interesting at the top. After an opening nine, 33, Weant found birdies on holes 11, 13, and 16 giving him a final round of six under par, 65. Playing alongside Nathan Weant was Scott Abbott of Dallas. Abott also caught fire early carding a four under par, 32, on his opening nine which included birdies on holes 1, 5, 6, and 8. One lone bogey on the par 3, fifteenth, was the only blemish on the card as Abbott matched Weant's six under par, 65. Both players found themselves early leaders in the clubhouse at six under par, 207, with just a few final groups on course. Also following form on the final round surge was Mike Calef of Allen. After a steady opening nine holes of even par, Calef found his groove making five straight threes on his back nine in route to a four under par, 67, giving him a three day total of seven under par, 206.
The day's final pairing saw second round leaders, Birdsey and Tom Moore, paired with recent Texas A&M graduate, Jordan Russell. Both players struggled to find birdies on the front nine which made things interesting with early players finding red numbers early and often. First round leader, Paul McConnell, made the sudden surge up the leaderboard when he made an eagle, two, on the par four thirteenth and quickly followed it with a birdie on the following hole bringing himself into a three way tie at eight under par with Birdsey and Moore. While Birdsey and Moore both made birdie on the par five, sixteenth, to get to nine under par, McConnell was answering with a birdie on seventeen. Looking to post ten under, McConnell's birdie putt on the eighteenth came up just short as he found himself posting a three day total of nine under par, 204. Birdsey and Moore, standing on the eighteenth tee tied, both found the fairway on creating the stage was for a putting duel. Moore was first to putt and left his thirty foot birdie attempt just inches short setting up Birdsey with an opportunity for victory. Standing over nineteen feet of putt, Thomas Birdsey looked as calm as could be as he rolled it in claiming victory.
Birdsey transferred to Wake Forest last summer after playing at Kansas State as freshman. He played in every tournament this season for the Deacs and finished with the second-best scoring average on the team at 74.3.