|Wednesday, May 24, 2017 - |
Full event information is available at CDGA.org/CDGAMidAm.
ROMEOVILLE, Ill. – Beginning with a 2-under 70 in stroke play qualifying, the only red number in the field, and ending with a 3-and-2 championship match victory in which he never trailed, Chadd Slutzky was a cut above the 3rd CDGA Mid-Amateur Championship field. The Deer Park native clinched the title with a win over Brian Hickey in the championship match Wednesday morning at Mistwood Golf Club.
Slutzky, the 2015 Illinois State Mid-Amateur winner, continued his impressive form from the weekend before the CDGA Mid-Am, when he won the I-80 Amateur at The Sanctuary Golf Course with a final-round 66.
“The swing’s been working,” Slutzky said. “I came out here Monday for the stroke play and it continued. I’m just feeling good with my swing, everything is working.”
The Grove Country Club member grabbed the lead on the first hole of the championship match. Slutzky found himself behind a tree left of the fairway, but skillfully lined his approach from under the tree to within two feet for a conceded birdie.
“I hit my usual bad drive off the first tee and I was under a tree, punched a wedge up there to a couple feet,” Slutzky said with a chuckle.
Slutzky moved 2 up after a Hickey bogey on the second. However, Hickey rebounded with birdies at the third and fourth holes to even the match, the latter with a 25-foot birdie putt.
“I knew Chad was going to make a lot of birdies today, and of course he hits one to about one foot on the first hole from under a tree,” Hickey said. “To get two of them back on 3 and 4, I had some momentum. I made a nice putt on 4.”
That momentum was quickly gone after errant tee shots by Hickey on the next two holes. The lefty’s drive on the par-4 fifth was well wide of the fairway, leading to an approach shot that found the water left of the green. Hickey then lost his tee shot in the hazard right of the fairway at the sixth. Slutzky won both holes with pars and never looked back.
“I hit a couple bad tee shots on 5 and 6 and lost some momentum from there,” Hickey said. “I was never really able to get it back.”
“Our match today was about who could make less mistakes,” Slutzky added. “It wasn’t our best golf, either of us. I just happened to make a few less mistakes.”
Slutzky extended his lead to 3 up on the 11th with par and moved dormie through 14 after Hickey’s tee shot on the 202-yard par 3 over water splashed in. Hickey extended the match on the par-5 15th, putting a 3-wood to six inches from 298 yards for a tap-in eagle. It wasn’t enough though, as both players card pars on the 16th, earning Slutzky the victory.
In just its third year as a match play event, a trend is developing in the CDGA Mid-Amateur. The previous two events were won by past Illinois State Mid-Amateur champions – John Ehrgott in 2015 and Kyle Nathan last year. Slutzky joins them in winning the mid-am double.
“I’m thrilled, joining Kyle Nathan and John Ehrgott before me” Slutzky said. “I’m just glad to be alongside those two guys, they’re great golfers.”
The CDGA championship slate takes a few weeks off before returning with another match play competition, the 98th CDGA Amateur Championship June 27-30 at Briar Ridge Country Club in Schererville, Ind.
Match Play Results
Round of 16
(1) Chadd Slutzky def. (16) Paul White, 2 and 1
(9) Steve Sawtell def. (8) K.C. Matkaitis, 1 up
(12) Peter Flory def. (5) David Deschler, 1 up
(4) Mike Henry def. (13) Andy Johnson, 1 up
(2) Mark Esposito def. (15) Michael Natale, 21 holes
(10) Michael Peters def. (7) Tim Sheppard, 3 and 1
(3) Brian Hickey def. (14) Matt Considine, 1 up
(11) Paul Dagys def. (6) Joe Madda, 2 and 1
(1) Chadd Slutzky def. (9) Steve Sawtell, 21 holes
(12) Peter Flory def. (4) Mike Henry, 1 up
(2) Mark Esposito def. (10) Michael Peters, 5 and 3
(3) Brian Hickey def. (11) Paul Dagys, 2 up
(1) Chadd Slutzky def. (12) Peter Flory, 4 and 3
(3) Brian Hickey def. (2) Mark Esposito, 19 holes
(1) Chadd Slutzky def. (3) Brian Hickey, 3 and 2