Mike Mitchell and Scott Marino will meet in a rematch of sorts today in the 86th annual Washington Metropolitan Golf Association Amateur championship final at Old South Country Club in Lothian.
In the 1999 WMGA Amateur championship final, Mitchell beat Steve Marino, his then-University of Virginia teammate and Scott's older brother, 5 and 4, at Westwood Country Club in Virginia. Today Scott Marino, a recent graduate of W.T. Woodson High, will go for a measure of revenge.
"It will be fun," said Scott Marino, who will attend James Madison University in the fall. "I've known Mike since my brother was playing junior golf. It will be interesting to put my game against his because I've never done it."
Yesterday Marino, 18, defeated Joey McLister of Loudoun Golf and Country Club, 5 and 4, in his morning quarterfinal match, then defeated Tom Winegardner of Old South, 3 and 2, in his semifinal match.
Marino won the first hole of his match with Winegardner, went 2 up with a birdie on the 342-yard par-4 fourth hole and was 3 up and in control at the turn. The key hole, however, might have been No. 1. Winegardner, 43, reached the 485-yard par 5 in two shots but three-putted from 25 feet. Marino, meantime, landed his third shot, from about 60 yards, to inside two feet and made birdie.
"It looked like I was going to win the hole, and then I end up losing it," said Winegardner, who missed four birdie putts inside 10 feet on the front nine.
Marino, who plays out of the Country Club of Fairfax, had played only one other tournament round this summer before the WMGA Amateur -- the Virginia State Amateur Qualifier, in which he missed qualifying by two strokes. But he said yesterday he is finally starting to feel comfortable with his swing.
"This year I kind of worked on different stuff in my swing, and I've been hitting the ball better than I have in probably two years," he said. "I've just been waiting for the rounds to come together, and they've finally started to."
He will need his best stuff today against Mitchell, a 24-year-old two-time All-Met who recently regained his amateur status after playing professionally following his graduation from Virginia. Mitchell, who plays out of Columbia Country Club, fired a 1-under-par 71 in Thursday's stroke-play qualifier.
Yesterday Mitchell defeated Hall Chaney of Old South, 3 and 2, in the quarterfinals, then beat Kevin Dillard of Army Navy, 6 and 5, in the semifinals. Dillard was just 2 over through 14 holes, but Mitchell was nearly flawless. He made four birdies and 10 pars, won the first three holes of the match (two with birdies) and was 4 up when the players walked to the sixth tee.