Marty West of Columbia Country Club birdied the first hole and went on to defeat John Kyle of Congressional, 7 and 6, to win his sixth Maryland Amateur golf title today at Rolling Road Country Club.
West, 33, a mortgage banker from Rockville, won this tournament last year, and in 1979, 1978, 1974 and 1973. Only Ralph Bogart of Chevy Chase, who won 10 times between 1948 and 1967, has been more successful.
"It's a great record Ralph set," said West, a two-time member of the Walker Cup team. "I'll keep playing in this tournament. If I get to winning nine of these I'll set my sights on Ralph. Right now I'm not thinking about his record."
Against Kyle, What West said he was thinking only about against Kyle was keeping his mistakes to a minimum on this short, tricky course that measures just over 6,000 yards.
Kyle, 38, a real estate broker and two-time Congressional Club champion, said he would have to play well just to stay close to West in the 36-hole final.
Kyle did play well in his morning round of two-over-par 72, but he still trailed by four holes. He sank a 45-foot putt on the seventh hole for a winning birdie and chipped into the cup for a tieing birdie at the 17th. But West had four birdies for 68 before adjourning for lunch.
In the afternoon, Kyle fell five holes behind after he hooked his tee shot on the second hole. The ball stopped beneath pine trees and he was able to hit his second shot only 10 feet. He hit his third shot into a greenside bunker, and his fourth was still short of the green. After Kyle hit his fifth shot 25 feet past the hole, he conceded West a birdie putt and the hole.
West made it 6 up with birdie at the par-4 fifth hole; his wedge second shot almost went into the hole and he sank a four-foot putt.
West moved to 7 up with a par on the eighth hole after Kyle missed a five-foot putt. He took total command by going 8 up with par on the ninth hole when Kyle three-putted.
West said he "went to sleep" and bogeyed the 10th and 11th holes, which allowed Kyle to win both with pars and pull within six holes.
The match ended on the par-5 12th when West two-putted for par and Kyle chipped up and missed a six-foot par putt.