An all-University of Virginia final round was set up yesterday in the Washington Metropolitan Golf Association's men's amateur championship as 19-year-old teammates Steve Marino and Mike Mitchell each overcame deficits in the morning quarterfinals, then rolled through the semifinals and into the 36-hole championship match.
Today's final match will tee off at 8 a.m. at Westwood Country Club in Vienna.
Marino, a 1998 W.T. Woodson graduate who won the Virginia State Golf Association amateur title last week, is trying to become the first player to win the VSGA and WMGA men's titles the same year.
The college sophomore came back from 1 down through 16 holes to defeat Maryland amateur semifinalist Kenny Doerrer, 1 up, in the quarterfinals. He then played a nearly flawless semifinal match to defeat 18-year-old David Spencer, 6 and 5.
"Just three words--I got smoked," said Spencer, who will attend Alabama in the fall.
Spencer defeated Tim Krouse on the 19th hole in his quarterfinal. Krouse defeated defending champion Richard Holland on Friday.
Friday "I played like Fred Couples. [Yesterday] I played like Fred Flintstone," Krouse said.
In attempting to complete the double, Marino has played 13 rounds of golf in 11 days.
"I think [Friday] I was a little fatigued, and I was a little out of it," Marino said. "But [yesterday] I was back into it and excited. Now I just can't wait for the finals."
Mitchell, a 1997 Georgetown Prep graduate and Virginia junior, came back from 3 down in his quarterfinal match against Wes Gribas to win on the 18th hole before defeating 21-year-old Andy Peden, 3 and 2. Peden had defeated Jason Cage, 4 and 3, in the quarterfinals with four birdies and an eagle though 15 holes.
"It's going to be a shootout," Mitchell said of today's final. "Steve can make a lot of birdies and today I didn't make too many. So, I think I've been saving them up. I hope I have. I'm going to need them. It's gonna be fun."