Anderson wins S.C. Am
Monday, August 10, 2009
While most of the country’s top amateurs were at the Western Amateur last week, Mark Anderson was in South Carolina, trying one last time to win his home state’s amateur championship.
Anderson was successful, shooting 16-under 272 (71-64-67-70) at Berkeley Hall Plantation in Bluffton, S.C., to win by six shots.
“It’s a tournament I’ve been playing every year since I was 15,” Anderson said. “I’ve watched Lucas (Glover) and D.J. (Trahan) win theirs. It was just something that I’ve always wanted to win. ... To do it on my last try is really special.
“I thought about playing the Western, ... because it’s a big event and it’s important for the Walker Cup, but my heart really was with the state championship. I wouldn’t be where I am today without coming up through their great junior program.”
Sunday may have been bittersweet for Anderson, though. On the same day as his victory, the first eight selections for the U.S. Walker Cup team were announced. Anderson was not one of the picks.
Anderson was proud of the way he handled a rough start to Sunday’s round. He began the day with a four-shot lead, but was tied with Josh Gallman after making bogeys on Nos. 4 and 5. Anderson birdied the sixth, then made birdie on three of the final five holes.
He will have one last chance at the U.S. Amateur to impress the Walker Cup selectors and try to earn one of the final two spots. He qualified Aug. 3-4 at Amelia River Golf Club in Amelia Island, Fla. Anderson hit a 9-iron within tap-in range on the first hole of a 4-for-2 playoff to make birdie and earn a spot at Southern Hills.
“I’m just going to have a lot of fun and prepare really hard for the Am,” Anderson said.