NEWTON, Kansas (AP) — Byron Meth beat Doug Ghim in the first playoff hole after blowing a three-hole lead down the stretch to win the U.S. Amateur Public Links championship on Saturday.
Meth, a senior at University of Pacific, evened the match on the 36th hole of regulation at Sand Creek Station Golf course when 18-year-old Ghim, who is heading to the University of Texas, made double bogey.
Ghim had taken the lead with an eagle on the 35th hole.
Playing the par-5 10th in the playoff, both found the fairway off the tee. Ghim then hit into tall grass around a water hazard. He punched and took a bogey. Meth hit the green in regulation and two-putted for the win.
"It really worked out for me today because without that mental edge, I don't know if I could have done it," Meth said. "But staying in there mentally, I was able to get it done."
The match was all square after the opening 18. Early in the afternoon round, Meth took a 3-hole lead on the 26th hole after Ghim had trouble making a few par putts. Ghim, who trailed by three in his semifinal match as well, responded by driving just left of the short, par-4 ninth and immediately cut Meth's lead to two.
On the back nine, Ghim won hole 28 and followed with wins on holes 30 and 31 to take a one-hole lead.
After Meth evened up the match on the 32nd hole, Ghim drove the next green, a 353-yard par 4.
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