PITTSFIELD -- The Scotts ruled the day in Monday’s U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship qualifier at Berkshire Hills Country Club on Monday.
Tewksbury’s Shawn Scott, fueled by going eagle-birdie on the ninth and 10th holes, earned medalist honors with a 4-under par 68 while Foxborough’s Scott Congdon birdied three of his final four holes to finish second at 69.
Brad Hartz, of Wellesley, shot a steady 1-under 71 to earn the third and final spot for the U.S. Mid-Amateur, which will be played at the Country Club of Birmingham (Ala.) in October.
Steve Sykes, a Berkshire Hills member, earned the first alternate spot by surviving a five-player, four-hole playoff. He made a clutch 15-foot eagle putt on the 18th hole to finish in the logjam at even-par 72.
For Scott, 28, a member at Long Meadow Country Club in Lowell, qualifying for his first U.S. Golf Association event is a high point.
"I’m psyched," said Scott. "I’ve had two goals. One was to win the Lowell City Championship, which I did this year, and the other was to play in a USGA event."
He can thank his back nine start and finish for that. Scott hit the par-5 10th green in two and made a 6-foot eagle putt. He followed that by draining a 10-foot downhill putt to move to 3-under.
After a bogey on No. 14, he finished birdie-birdie, reaching the par-5 18th in two to complete a 4-under 33 on the back. .
"My game plan was to attack the par 5s and that’s what I did," said Scott, who was 5-under on the par-5s.
Congdon -- no relation to Berkshire County’s most dominant player, Andy Congdon -- was even par and needed something to happen.
"I was just hanging on the front nine," said Congdon, who played in the U.S. Amateur in 2010 and the Mid-Amateur last year. "I was more aggressive on the back and made birdies on 15, 16 and 18."
While the odds are stacked against Sykes sneaking in as an alternate, he was pleased with his performance.
"I would have taken [being an alternate] before I teed off," said Sykes, who finished a 10-year run as Taconic High School’s volleyball coach in 2006.
Sykes, third behind James Ryan in the Berkshire Hills club championship over the weekend, has only started playing in big individual events in the past few years and is finally finding a comfort level.
"I was getting too worried about my score, now I am just trying to hit the shots," the 40-year-old said.
The toughest part of Sykes day was waiting to find out he was in a playoff after teeing off in the day’s first twosome.
"It was a long day of waiting," Sykes said. "I had lunch, talked to another guy who was waiting and hung around with members, who were very supportive."
The long wait showed when he missed his drive way right on the first playoff hole (the par-4 first) and ended up behind a tree. But, a big fade got him near the green and he made a nice up-and-down to stay alive.
He finally outlasted Frankie Sanborn with a par on the fourth playoff hole to earn the alternate spot.
Club champion Ryan was done in by an uncooperative putter in shooting 74. Worthington Golf Club’s Jim Patterson was next best among Allied course members with a 77 and Wahconah Country Club’s Paul Briggs shot a 78.
To contact Richard Lord:
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