Washington-area players Martie West and Tony Ciconte of Columbia Country Club squelched opposition comeback bids and scored 2-and-1 victories in the first round of the U.S. Amateur golf championship yesterday at Plainfield Country Club.
Wayne DeFrancesco of Rockville, Md., also won. He beat Steve Waugh of VIdalia, Ga., 3 and 1.
Two other Columbia Country Club players, Henri deLozier and veteran Perky Cullinane, and Howard Jones of Columbia, Md., play today after first-round byes.
West, playing in his eighth Amateur, elininated Mike Hughett of Lincoln, Neb., and Ciconte staved off Kent Stauffer of Bradford, Pa.
"The toughest match to win in this tournament is your first," said West, a former Walker Cup Masters and U.S. Open participant. It looked easy for the mortgage banker on the front nine. He was three under par and 3 up against 20-year-old Hughett, who toted his own bag.
West, whose best Amateur finish was fourth at Charlotte, N.C., in 1972, went 4 up with a birdie on the 10th. The bespectacled Hughett, of Oral Roberts, hit his tee shot on the par-three 11th one inch from the hole but West rammed in a 20-foot putt for halving birdie.
Hughett won three of the next four holes. On the tight par-four 17th, West, clinging to a one-hole lead, drove into the left rough and was partially stymied by a pine tree. His iron-shot approach finished just off the green and West got up and down with a 15-foot par putt to win the match as Hughett took bogey.
Cinconte also had to struggle after a large early lead. The 32-year-old IBM marketing representative was out in 35 and 5 up.
Ciconte lost the next four holes with bogeys against the Indiana (Pa.) College golfer Ciconte, who later said his back-nine problems stemmed from lack of aggressiveness, regained a 2-up advantage with a win on 15, but Stauffer pulled within one with a five-foot downhill birdie putt on the par-five 16th.
Ciconte holed a seven-footer for an up-and-down par on the 17th to win the match.
District Amateur titlist DeFrancesco, who won three matches in this tournament two years ago, hit a 60-foot sand shot into the cup for birdie deuce on the 14th hole for a 1-up lead. The deliberate DeFrancesco won 15 with par and the match on the 17th hole after Waugh pumped two tee shots out of bounds.
University of Maryland player Steve Fellinger, who shared the Belle Haven Four-Ball title, scored a 3-and-2 victory over Phil Estep of Conroe, Tex.
Fellinger, a left-hander, made the field as alternate when two-time Amateur champ Gary Cowan canceled.
Jerry McFerren, formerly of Crofton and now living in Phoneix, Ariz., was beaten by Jeff Sanders of Portland, Ore., 3 and 2.
First-round winners included Gary Player's son, Wayne, at 16 the youngest in the field, favored Bobby Clampett, Jay Sigel, veteran Dale Morey and former champ Vinnie Giles.
Marshall Marraccini of Elizabeth, Pa., knocked out 1975 Amateur titlist Fred Ridley of Cleveland, 5 and 4.
[TEXT OMITTED FROM SOURCE] the Middle Atlantic PGA Championship.
Main, who shows a 36-hole effort of 70-73 - 143 over the par-72 Ivy Hill layout has 13 golfers within five strokes of him in the chase for the top prize of $3,000.
Herb Hooepr of Petersburg, who also played on the pro tour (1968-72) turned in a second round 34-38 -72 and was at 144.
Pikesville, Md., pro Mark Alwin, 73-72 - 145, who recently left the PGA circuit and Jay Hardwick of Parisburg, Va., 74-71 - 145 were tied for third.
Claude King of Norfolk, another former tour player, had the best second round, 69, and shot himself back into contention at 147. He is tied with four others for fourth.