The USGA Men’s and Women’s Senior Amateurs, going on concurrently in California and New Jersey respectively, provided very different outcomes Tuesday for two of our most accomplished amateurs.
Kansas Cityan Bryan Norton won both matches yesterday and is now one of eight players left standing in the US Senior Amateur at Big Canyon CC in Newport Beach, CA. Bryan will play Peter Wegmann today as he tries to advance to the semifinal round. Norton has played in numerous USGA events, including a runner-up finish to Walker Cupper Nathan Smith in the 2003 US Mid-Amateur.
Ellen Port’s bid for a third consecutive US Women’s Senior Amateur title ended abruptly yesterday morning in a loss to familiar rival Martha Leach of Kentucky. Port won the qualifying medal by nine shots and the #1 seed over the weekend and entered match play competition as the prohibitive favorite to win her third straight Women’s Am at Hollywood GC in Deal, NJ.
“You have to hit good shots,” Port said afterward. “I’m capable of hitting them, but I just didn’t execute today. When you get down early against a good player, as I did today, it’s hard to come back.” Port never led in the match and went down to a 3 & 2 defeat in ending her quest for USGA history with a third consecutive championship.