Horn hooks Kenai Match Play title

Posted: Monday, August 04, 2003

Nick Horn made his putts Sunday while his opponents struggled on the greens, giving the 18-year-old the title in the Kenai Amateur Match Play Championships at Kenai Golf Course.

Horn ran away with his championship match after qualifying fourth for Sunday's competition in Saturday's stroke-play round in the gross scoring division. The net scoring division was another story, though, as match-play champion Dustin Jung had to win a playoff Saturday just to make the eight-player field, then had to come from behind on the last regulation hole of his semifinal match, forcing an extra hole just to make it to the championship match.

"I thought I was done," Jung said of his semifinal. "I was 1-down on the last hole."

Jung and his opponent, Dwight Kramer, each put their drives in the fairway on the final regulation hole of their match, but Kramer put his next shot in the hazard while Jung hit his over the green. Jung was able to win the hole and tie the match, then birdied the playoff hole, No. 10.

Jung's championship match against Patty Crowell was tight until the seventh hole, when Jung grabbed the momentum.

"I made a clutch bogey with a couple of shots out of the woods, and a great flop shot," Jung said. "On No. 8, I made birdie to close it out.

"It definitely wasn't boring."

Horn faced a tough semifinal match against Tim Walsh, but prevailed 3 and 2 in what he said could have been a closer competition.

"I've been friends with Tim for a long time, since I started playing golf," Horn said. "It was nice to beat him, even though he missed a bunch of short putts. ... It should have come down to the last hole."

Horn had similar luck in his championship match against Doug Jung.

"I won the second hole and the third hole, and he won the fourth," Horn said. "The first nine were really close until No. 7. I won seven, eight and nine -- he missed a bunch of short putts that would have kept it close. I ended up 4-up after nine."

Horn was able to cruise into the back nine, clinching the match by winning hole 14.

"It's probably the best I've ever played here," Horn said. "It was probably a good time to play the best I've played."

Horn said Saturday's stroke-play qualifying round wasn't nearly as smooth as he shot an 83 on a course where he usually breaks 80.

"I was just telling myself, 'Make the top eight, because you can do anything in match play,'" Horn said. "You can have a bad hole, and it's just one hole. ... You step up to the next hole, win it, and you're right back where you were before."

Dustin Jung also enjoyed the match play format.

"As long as you just play safe and keep it under control, you can usually come out pretty good," Jung said.

Kenai Amateur Match Play Championship

Saturday and Sunday at Kenai Golf Course

Sunday's match play results

Gross scoring division

Quarterfinals (nine holes)

Tim Walsh def. Josh Lansing, 3 and 1; Nick Horn def. Lorne Smagge 4 and 2; Matt Matarrese def. Eric Brogdon 2-up; Doug Jung def. Tom Reese, 1-up (10).

Semifinals (nine holes)

Nick Horn def. Tim Walsh, 3 and 2; Doug Jung def. Matt Matarrese, 1-up (10).

Championship (18 holes)

Nick Horn def. Doug Jung, 6 and 4.

Net scoring division

Quarterfinals (nine holes)

Dustin Jung def. Kirk Hyman, 4 and 3; Dwight Kramer def. Craig Jung, 1-up (10); Cliff Baker def. E.Z. Hoyez, 4 and 3; Paula Crowley def. Mike Navarre, 2-up.

Semifinals (nine holes)

Dustin Jung def. Dwight Cramer, 1-up (10); Paula Crowley def. Cliff Baker, 2 and 1.

Championship (nine holes)

Dustin Jung def. Paula Crowley, 2 and 1.

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