Hollister, Mo. — You never really know what matchup you’ll get in an amateur event.
In Sunday’s championship round of the 113th Missouri Amateur Championship, a pair of college golfers going head to head, Nick Westrich of Central Missouri and Missouri State’s Max Kreikemeier.
Westrich survived an early deficit to claim the championship 5&4.
“The first one, I played in a qualifier and didn’t even make it. Second one, I missed the cut and didn’t make it to match play,” Westrich said. “Last year, I played decent and won like the 20 seed, but lost first round. This is the first time I ever won a match in match-play and I went all the way. It’s such an honor, it’s a dream.”
Kreikemeier took an early lead, winning the second and fifth hole to take a 1-up lead after the front nine. Westrich would win 10 and 12, and control the lead from there.
The two college athletes were not strangers to each other. Following the nine-round week, they became quite familiar with each others strengths and weaknesses.
“We played the first two rounds together,” Kreikemeier said. “We sat on the range and just said, let’s have some fun today, no matter who wins it’s going to be a great match. It was, it was a lot of fun.”
Westrich got hot to close the first round, winning the 16th and 17th holes to take a 3-up lead at the end of 18.
Westrich beat three-time champion Brad Nurski in the quarterfinals to set up a semi-final matchup against Logan Smith, which Westrich won 2&1.