Scrappy Mike Bittman of Congressional eliminated Henri deLozier of Columbia on the final hole in a semi-final and earned the dubious privilege of playing defending champion Marty West on his hime Columbia Country Club course in today's final of the Maryland Amateur.
West put his game into high gear with birdies and an eagle in 30 holes of golf and sidelined two of the area's best young amateurs, Matt Sughrue of Bethesda and Larry Rentz of Crofton.
West and his observant caddy Joe Brown solved an alignment problem, moving West's stance from open to square as they went to work on Belle Haven champion Sughrue in a morning quarterfinal.
West birdied the opening par 4 hole and then birdied the third. Three up after nine holes, the Walker Cupper then registered four consecutive 3s with birdies on the long par-4 10th and 11th holes, an eagle on 12 after reaching the green in two blows, and a par at the par-3 13th. West went on to win, 5 and 4, over bewildered Sughrue.
Against Rentz, West again birdied the first hole and was off to the races. He went 2 up with a 25-foot downhill birdie putt at the third hole. They halved the next two holes and came to the long par-four xisth, the hole Rentz said was one of the keys to the match.
West pushed his tee shot into the pine trees to the right. Rentz, finally presented with an opening, failed to capitalize and also pushed his drive into the forest. West, stymied by the trees on his approach shot, lofted a wedge safely over the trees short of the green. Rentz, with a restricted backswing, topped his ball past the trees but pulled his third shot into a greenside trap. His double bogey lost to West's three-putted on eight.
West went 2 up with a 25-foot downhill putt on nine. Rentz pulled to within one hole again when he chipped into the cup for birdie on 10, only to see West regain a 2-up margin with a par on 11.
West went 4 up with eight-foot birdie putts on 12 and 13 and went on to win, 3 and 2.
Rentz, 19, who played in the recent U.S. Open in Toledo, Ohio, said, "The thing that really hurt me was when he hit the shot into the woods on six and I go ahead and follow him in. He putted really well. He didn't give anything away. You can't give anything away in these kinds of matches. You have to make your own breaks."
Rentz had six birdies in a second-round mtach Friday but did not collect any in defeating Paul Ryan of Congressional, 3 and 2, in a morning quarterfinal.
DeLozier won his morning match over Dave Pelz of Greencastle with birdies on the 16th and 17th holes.
Bittman, who just graduated from Georgetown University, won his morning quarterfinal when left-hander Mike McCarthy of Greencastle three-putted the 18th hole to lose, 1 up. CAPTION: Picture, Larry Rentz blasts out of a trap to the sixth green during his 3-and-2 loss to Marty West in Maryland Amateur. By Ellsworth Davis - The Washington Post