Published 12:00 am Sunday, June 17, 2007
Salisbury’s Will Collins tied for fourth place at the 47th North Carolina Amateur Championship held at Starmount Forest Country Club in Greensboro.Collins, who held a two-stroke lead after two rounds and entered the last round in second place, shot 70 on Sunday to join Chris Eaves and Andrew Westmoreland at 11-under for the event.
Burlington’s Jerry Richardson, Raleigh’s Cliff Benson and Kinston’s Barden Berry were tied atop the leaderboard at 12 under and competed in a three-hole playoff. The 22-year-old Richardson, who won the 2005 championship, sank a 6-foot birdie putt to claim the title.
“This one is sweeter,” said Richardson, who has completed his golf eligibility at N.C. State but will return to school in the fall to complete his degree. “I’m a better player than I was two years ago, and this was a tougher last day.”
At one point on the back nine, Richardson was tied with five others for the lead.
Richardson, Benson and Berry all had 3-under 68s in the final round. Westmoreland made his move with a 66.
Collins’ best round of the event came Friday, when he shot 64. That effort tied for the best round since Matt Kilgo fired a 63 in 2002. Michael Goodes had an opening-round 64 last year, when he won at Forest Creek Golf Club in Pinehurst.
Collins, a Virginia signee who won back-to-back 2A titles as a member of Salisbury High’s golf team, was No. 4 in the CGA’s North Carolina Junior Boys rankings at the beginning of June even though he had competed in only 15 events.