Tilley's Run in U.S. Mid-Am Ends in Quarterfinals

Photo: USGA/Chris Keane


UPDATE (October 12, 2017) -- After taking medalist honors and winning three matches, Brad Tilley's run in the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship came to an end Thursday morning in a 20-hole match at Atlanta's Capital City Club.

Tilley, 34 of Easton, Conn., owned all the momentum early, winning a pair of holes with par while also winning Nos. 6, 7 and 10 with birdie to take a commanding 5-up lead. However, Matt Parziale of Brockton, Mass., found his game down the stretch, as birdies on Nos. 11-13 ignited his comeback. Parziale won Nos. 11-12, while the par-three 13th was halved as Tilley also made two. A pair of bogeys on Nos. 15-16 cost Tilley two more holes, while Parziale added his fourth birdie of the inward nine on the par-four 17th to square the match.

After a halve on the par-four 1st, Parziale claimed the victory with par on the second hole, ending the match in 20 holes.

"It's a really special experience playing any USGA event, and then to earn medalist honors was a huge honor," said Tilley, who was making his first appearance in the U.S. Mid-Am. "No one can take that away from me, so that's pretty special. To make it to the quarterfinals is fantastic. Obviously ... I came here with the intent of winning. That's hard to do. It's a long week. But, I think I showed well and I'm very proud of myself."

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UPDATE (October 11, 2017) -- After visiting an emergency room overnight and getting two liters of IV fluids, Brad Tilley of Easton, Conn., won a pair of matches Wednesday in the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship to advance to quarterfinal action at Capital City Club in Atlanta.

Related: U.S. Mid-Am Homepage | Scoring

Tilley built momentum early in his morning match, winning Nos. 5-7 to go 3-up against Jason Anthony of Fairfield, Calif. Anthony claimed the ninth, but Tilley used a pair of pars on Nos. 11 and 14 to extend his advantage to four holes. Anthony birdied the par-three 15th, but a half on the 16th earned Tilley the 3-and-2 victory.

In the afternoon, Tilley--who medaled in the stroke play portion with rounds of 69 and 67--faced his first deficit in match play as Devaughn Robinson of the Bahamas built a 2-up lead through the opening nine. But, Tilley remained paitent and took advantage of Robinson miscues down the stretch, winning Nos. 10, 13 and 14 with pars to take a 1-up lead with four to play. While Robinson came back with a birdie-two on the 16th, Tilley once again used steady play to seal the victory, as pars on Nos. 16 and 18 led to a 2-up victory.

"I told myself, just stay calm," Tilley told the USGA about trailing Robinson. "I was able to take advantage of some solid, consistent play on the back nine. I think I only missed two greens and only a few fairways."

Quarterfinal action begins Thursday morning, with semifinal rounds to follow in the afternoon. The championship concludes with a 36-hole final on Friday beginning at 8 a.m.

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UPDATE (October 10, 2017) -- Brad Tilley of Easton, Conn., fought through illness, Tuesday in the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship at Capital City Club in Atlanta, winning his match by a 3-and-2 margin to become the lone Met Area competitor left in the event.

Related: U.S. Mid-Am Homepage | Scoring

Tilley, who medaled with rounds of 69 and 67, used birdies on Nos. 2 and 5 to open up a two-hole advantage. While his competitor Draegan Majors of Tulsa, Okla., won the ninth hole, Tilley bounced back to win the next two and push his advantage to three. The two traded holes on Nos. 13-16, with Tilley closing out the match with a birdie on the par-four 16th.

"I just told myself to keep going, hit one shot, drink as much water as possible," Tilley told the USGA. "I had to lie down between shots. Should have started that earlier, because when I did, I got a little bit of paus from the pain and discomfort."

Reigning champion and 2016 MGA Player of the Year Stewart Hagestad built an early lead in his match, going 2-up through six holes against Dusty Drenth of Davenport, Iowa. However, Hagestad would not win another hole, as Drenth worked his way to a 3-and-1 win.

Dan MacDonald of Ridgewood, N.J., also dropped his opening round match, falling by a 7-and-6 margin to Gene Elliott of West Des Moines, Iowa.

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UPDATE (October 9, 2017) -- Brad Tilley of Easton, Conn., led three Met Area competitors into match play in the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship in Atlanta, earning medalist honors behind a 5-uner 136 over the two days of stroke play qualifying. Play, taking place at Capital City Club and stroke play companion Atlanta National Golf Club, was conducted Saturday and Monday, as weather impacted Sunday's play. Stewart Hagestad of Newport Beach, Calif., and Dan MacDonald of Ridgewood, N.J., also secured their spots in match play which begins Tuesday.

Related: U.S. Mid-Am Homepage | Scoring

Tilley, who also medaled at the Elmsford sectional qualifier at Knollwood, opened play with a 2-under 69 at Atlanta National. His steady play continued into Monday despite the rain-postponed Sunday, as he used four birdies and a single bogey to card a 3-under 67 at Capital City to take the top seed by one shot. Tilley, who finished as runner up at the Westchester Amateur, begins match play at 11:30 a.m., Tuesday, against Draegen Majors of Tulsa, Okla., who took the final spot in a playoff Tuesday morning.

Meanwhile, 2016 MGA Player of the Year Hagestad began his title defense with a 2-over 73 at Atlanta National. But, the reigning champion roared back on Monday, firing a 6-under 64 at Capital City. The round propelled Hagestad up the leaderboard and into a tie for second place at the conclusion of qualifying. Taking the No. 4 seed, Hagestad begins match play against Dusty Drenth of Davenport, Iowa, at 11:20 a.m.

Macdonald opened stroke play qualifying with a 1-under 70 at Atlanta National and despite a 4-over 74 Monday at Capital City, finished tied 19th. MacDonald, winner of both the Travis Memorial and Hochster Memorial this year, has the No. 26 seed and faces Gene Elliott of West Des Moines, Iowa, at 12:30 p.m.

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ELMSFORD, N.Y. (October 6, 2017) -- The nation's best players aged 25 or older converge in Atlanta, Ga., this weekend for the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship at Capital City Club, and the Met Area is very well represented with nearly 20 competitors appearing in the field. Competitors will play 36 holes of stroke play qualifying, playing at Capital City Club and companion course Atlanta National Golf Club in Milton, Ga., with the top 64 qualifiers advancing to match play.

Related: U.S. Mid-Am Homepage

Headlining the field is reigning U.S. Mid-Am champion and 2016 MGA Player of the Year, Stewart Hagestad. The Newport Beach, Calif., native has had a thrilling year following his win last year at Stonewall in Elverson, Pa., competing in the Masters (and finishing as Low Amateur), the U.S. Open, and winning a point as part of the victorious U.S. Walker Cup team. Hagestad's defense begins at 1:14 p.m., Saturday.

A host of players qualified out of the Met Area, including Brad Tilley of Easton, Conn., who took medalist honors at the Knollwood qualifier. Darin Goldstein of New York City will aim to advance to match play for the second straight year, following his performance at Stonewall last year. The complete list of competitors and their tee times for stroke play may be found below.

Match play will begin with the Round of 64 on Monday, with all matches taking place at Capital City Club until a champion is determined. Two rounds of match play will be conducted both Tuesday and Wednesday, while the 36-hole championship match takes place Thursday, Oct. 12.

Player Hometown Saturday Sunday
Denver Brown Rye Brook, N.Y. CC* - 9:02 am AN - 1:47 pm
John Ervasti Brooklyn, N.Y. AN* - 2:20 pm CC - 9:35 am
Matthew Finger Woolwich Twp., N.J. CC - 8:51 am AN* - 1:36 pm
Raymond Floyd Jr Old Greenwich, Conn. AN - 9:02 am CC* - 1:47 pm
Darin Goldstein New York, N.Y. CC* - 12:30 pm AN - 7:45 am
Stewart Hagestad Newport Beach, Calif. AN* - 1:14 pm CC - 8:29 am
Richard Hayes Wilton, Conn. AN* - 2:09 pm CC - 9:24 am
Brendan Jonland Summit, N.J. AN - 8:07 am CC* - 12:52 pm
Jordan Kaplan Plainview, N.Y. AN - 12:30 pm CC* - 7:45 am
Andrew Lord Bedford Hills, N.Y. CC* - 9:35 am AN - 2:20 pm
Dan MacDonald Ridgewood, N.J. AN* - 8:40 am CC - 1:25 pm
Matt Minerva Elmsford, N.Y. CC - 8:29 am AN* - 1:14 pm
Tommy McDonagh Norwalk, Conn. CC - 12:30 pm AN* - 7:45 am
Rob Pepi Huntington, N.Y. AN* - 8:18 am CC - 1:03 pm
Mike Stamberger Brielle, N.J. CC* - 12:41 pm AN - 7:56 am
Robert Stelben Jr. Darien, Conn. CC - 9:35 am AN* - 2:20 pm
Steve Tarulli Rockville, Centre, N.Y. AN - 1:14 pm CC* - 8:29 am
Brad Tilley Easton, Conn. AN* - 7:45 am CC - 12:30 pm

* - 10th Tee Start  |  AN - Atlanta National Golf Club  |  CC - Capital City Club

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