Aug. 27, 2000
SPRINGFIELD, N.J. (AP) - James Driscoll won the final three holes of
regulation to force a playoff with Jeff Quinney in the finals of the 100th U.S.
Amateur, which was suspended Sunday after 38 holes.
Quinney, of Eugene, Ore., and Driscoll, of Brookline, Mass., were to resume
the title match on the Upper Course at Baltusrol Golf Club at 9 a.m. Monday.
Going to 39 holes also guaranteed they will tie the U.S. Amateur record for
the longest title match as Sam Urzetta beat Frank Stranahan in 39 holes in
Going extra holes was the last thing anyone expected after Quinney, who had
staged impressive comeback wins in the third round and the quarterfinals, made
a short 2-footer for par at the par-3 15th to go 3-up with three to play.
However, Driscoll, 22, turned the tables on him much to the delight of his
family and relatives who shouted "Way to go James" after every big shot.
A bad drive and chip cost Quinney No. 16, and Driscoll won the last two
holes by making putts, something he hadn't done all day.
Driscoll actually hit two great shots at the par-5 17th, coming out of a
bunker to about 8 feet and making a sliding birdie putt to extend the match
after Quinney, who will be a senior at Arizona State, had already been conceded
For a split second, it appeared Driscoll, who just graduated from Virginia,
lost the championship at the 18th when he blocked his drive right into trees
with the ball coming to rest against a pine cone.
However, Quinney's drive hit a tree limb and came to rest on the edge of the
fairway about 300 yards from the hole. Both reached the green in three and
Driscoll tied the match by making a 5-foot par putt with ball doing a 360
around the hole before falling in.
Quinney nearly ended the match on the 37th hole when his hot shot out a
greenside bunker hit the pin and stopped inches from the cup.
The players showed a lot of sportsmanship at the 38th hole, conceding short
putts so neither would lose on a shot like that.
The threat of lightning had forced a 40-minute suspension earlier in the
round and when the threat returned around 7:14 p.m., play was suspended for the
Quinney had held the lead from the first hole of the morning round until
being tied at the 36th hole, in large part because Driscoll missed seven putts
from 8 feet or less, including six from 5 feet or less.
When Driscoll missed a 4-footer for birdie at No. 11 and then bogeyed 14, it
seemed Quinney was ready to be crowned the 100th Amateur champion.
Quinney combined a 2-under round in the morning with Driscoll's putting woes
on the hilly 6,887-yard course to take a 2-up lead.
Driscoll missed short par-saving putts from above the hole on Nos. 1 and 5
to stake Quinney to that 2-up lead.
After a bad tee shot at No. 6 cost him a hole, Quinney pushed the lead to
3-up with conceded birdie putts at the par-5 8th and the 351-yard, par-4 9th.
Driscoll rallied with a 2 1/2-foot birdie putt at the par-3 10th and a
15-footer at 13, but he scattered shots all over the par-5, 17th and conceded
after failing to get on the green with his fifth shot.
Driscoll ended his frustrating 1-over morning round by missing a 6-footer
Quinney's lead reached 4-up after Driscoll bogeyed the first two holes in
the afternoon, missing putts of 8 and 3 feet.
The biggest hole of the match might have been the 8th in the afternoon.
Leading 3-up, Quinney three-putted for a bogey after conceding Driscoll a
2-foot bogey putt.