UTC's Steven Fox Wins U.S. Amateur in Dramatic Fashion

Birdies 37th hole for Comeback Win

Sunday, August 19, 2012 - by B.B. Branton

CHERRY HILLS VILLAGE, Colo. -- UTC senior golfer Steven Fox won the last two holes in regulation in the 36-hole championship final and then rolled in an18-foot birdie putt on the 37th hole to win the U.S. Amateur Golf Championship here Sunday at the Cherry Hills Country Club.

Seeded 63rd in a field of 64, Fox defeated No. 60 seed Michael Weaver, 1-up for the title.

Fox rallied from 3-down to Weaver of Cal-Berkeley after 22 holes and was then  2-down with two holes to play.

Wearing a UTC navy blue golf shirt with the "Power C" on the front, the Hendersonville, Tenn. resident won the 35th hole with a birdie, followed by a winning par at the 36th hole to force a playoff.

Weaver had a four-foot par putt to win the national championship on the 36th hole, but the ball rimmed out to give Fox new life.

On the 37th hole (No.1), Fox was on in two on the par four, while Weaver was on in three. Fox then rolled in the down hill putt for the win.

"This is certainly great for our program," stated UTC head coach Mark Guhne. "But we are all way more excited for Steven. He has worked so hard throughout his career and it is such a great feeling to see it all come to fruition."

Ironically, Weaver was 2-down with two holes to play in his round of 16 match with Albin Choi (Canada) and won the match on the 19th hole.

Fox, who defeated Weaver's Cal-Berkeley teammate Brandon Hagy, 2-up in the semifinals, becomes the highest seed to win the U.S. Amateur since the United States Golf Association began the seeding process in 1985.

Fox Had Early Lead: Fox led 2-up after two holes, but Weaver fought back and took hs first lead on the seventh hole. He did not relinquish the lead until Fox's birdie putt on the 37th hole.

Fox was 1-down after 33 holes (No.15), winning the hole wih a birdie, but Weaver birdied the par-4 16th (34 hole) to move back to 2-up with two to go. Fox won the next three holes to claim the national championship.

Beating the World's No.1: In the quarterfinals, Fox, rnaked 127th in the world, defeated Chris Williams U. of Washington), the world's top-ranked amateur, 4-and-2 ... In the semis, Weaver edged Justin Thomas, the world's No.5 player, 3-and-2. 

The UTC senior and two-time high school All-American at Hendersonville High School, joins a prestigious list of golfers to win the U.S. Amateur, including Bobby Jones (1924-25-27-28-30), Arnold Palmer (1954), Jack Nicklaus (1959, 1961), Phil Mickelson (1990) and Tiger Woods (1994-95-96).

Three Majors: The win earns Fox a berth in the 2013 British Open ... Semifinal wins by Fox and Weaver earned them exemptions into the 2013 U.S. Open provided they keep their amateur status and a possible invitation to the 2013 Masters..

Cherry Hills Comebacks: At the 1960 U.S. Open, Arnold Palmer was seven strokes behind leader Mike Souchak, but shot a closing round 65 to win by two over runner-up and amateur Jack Nicklaus.

Fox trailed by as many as three shots on Sunday before his rally.

First National Champion: Tennessee at Chattanooga's first individual national champion was George Dickinson who won the 1966 NCAA small college singles tennis crown played at the Univ. of the South ... A native of Lookout Mountain, Dickinson graduated from City High School (1961) and played for Ga. Tech before transferring to the U. of Chattanooga. 

UTC Wrestling National Champions: Randy Batten (1975-760-77), Turner Jackson (1975-76) and David Weeks (1976) all won NCAA D-II national titles under coach Jim Morgan.

contact B.B. Branton at william.branton@comcast.net

 



Four In Double Figures, Heights Hawks Romp 72-41

Hamilton Heights’ Lady Hawks, ranked No. 1 in the country by ESPN, got a combined 37 points from Elizabeth Balogun and Treasure Hunt on Friday and routed Wesleyan Christian, 72-41, in the Best of Carolina Showcase at Legacy Charter School in Greenville, South Carolina. Hamilton Heights’ Hawks were scheduled to play a late game in Memphis on Friday and a report on that game ... (click for more)

Bearettes' Bench Pivotal In 52-46 Win Vs. Stone Memorial

The bench continues to be a lethal weapon for Bradley Central’s unbeaten Bearettes. Stone Memorial starters outscored Bradley 42-33 Friday night in Crossville, but the Bearettes’ reserve players had a 19-4 offensive edge and that enabled coach Jason Reuter’s squad to post a 52-46 victory. Bradley now has won 41 of its last 42 games, the only loss being against Stewarts ... (click for more)

Home In Alton Park Damaged By Fire Friday Morning

No injuries were reported in connection with a house fire in Alton Park Friday morning. The Chattanooga Fire Department received the alarm around  8:30 a.m.  and responded to 4020 Highland Ave. with five fire companies. When the first firefighters arrived on the scene, one of the residents of the house was concerned this his wife might still be inside. The firefighters ... (click for more)

Pedestrian Struck And Severely Injured In East Ridge Thursday Night

The East Ridge Police Department is investigating a motor vehicle collision involving a pedestrian being struck  at 5300 Ringgold Road on Thursday around  10 p.m. Officers arrived and found that East Ridge resident Dale Henderson had been struck by a vehicle and was suffering from severe injuries. It appears he attempted to cross Ringgold Road in front ... (click for more)

Technology: The Virtual Drug

The truth is you're probably reading this on a mobile device or your computer. As a matter of fact, I’m typing this down on a MacBook Pro. The point is technology is everywhere. It engulfs like a tsunami engulfs a village, only a few ever escape. In fact, it took me two hours to start this paper because I was so hypnotized by phone, checking my Instagram and seeing what the next ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

This week, as two men greeted one another at the steps leading to a holiday party, one said, “My wife is angel,” this in keeping with the season. The other replied, “You’re lucky … mine is still alive.” Once inside, the two walked into this conversation – “We had a power outage at our house this morning. So, my PC, laptop, TV, DVD, iPad and new surround sound music system were ... (click for more)