• August 18, 2019

GOLF: Markham overcomes late pressure to capture West Texas Amateur title - Odessa American: Sports

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GOLF: Markham overcomes late pressure to capture West Texas Amateur title

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Posted: Sunday, July 21, 2019 7:34 pm

MIDLAND What started out as a wide open race to the top turned into a two-man battle for the title between Jackson Markham and Travis Woolf for the title.

In the end, Markham did enough to prevail, shooting a final round of 2-under-par 70 to win the West Texas Amateur Sunday at Midland Country Club.

The rising senior at SMU (70-73-70—213) finished at 3-under-par for the weekend, winning by one shot over former TCU golfer Travis Woolf (69-73-72—214).

“I was in this tournament two years ago and played well the first round but I wasn’t able to stay on the leaderboard over the last two holes,” Markham said. “I felt like I earned a lot of redemption this week.”

That road to redemption hit a bump on the 17th hole when Markham pushed his tee shot right into the native area and scrambled to make double bogey.

On the same hole, Woolf hit his second shot from the fairway over the green and could not save par.

Both players stepped on the 18th tee tied for the lead but even after the stumble on the previous hole, Markham said that he had to stay in the moment.

“After 17, I wasn’t really hitting the panic button yet,” Markham said. “It was just a fluke swing on the tee shot and I just wasn’t able to save bogey.

“I thought the last hole was a birdie hole and if you make birdie anything could happen. I was fortunate that I got some help from the field as well.”

 Both players missed the fairways on their final tee shots with Woolf missing left and Markham going right.

The approach shots, however, proved to be the difference.

Wolff missed left into the long grass on his shot and was unable to get up and down once again, narrowly missing a wire-to-wire victory after leading the tournament after the first two rounds. Markham found the green on his approach shot and two-putted for the win.

“It was a great back and forth all day and I was really riding Jackson’s coattails on the back nine,” Woolf said. “He slipped up on 17 but unfortunately, I made those couple of bogeys coming in and he just got it done.”

Getting the job done was not easy on a windy day and difficult scoring conditions, but Markham credits his victory to lessons learned from the NCAA Golf Championships in May after SMU lost to Oklahoma State in the quarterfinals of match play.

“We were a little disappointed in the spring to lose that match,” Markham said. “I learned a lot from that match and I felt today I was able to draw a lot from that and handle the pressure.

“Every shot mattered and I hope I can keep taking that with me for the rest of my career.”

>> LOCAL FINISHERS: Former Permian and current UTSA golfer Will Adams (73-72-73—218) finished in a tie for third place with Rick Houston and Neil Dufford, both of Midland at 2-over-par. Houston’s final round 69 was the low round of the day Sunday.

Former Odessa College golfer Tripp Wallace was one of seven golfers to end up tied for ninth in a group that included former Permian golfer Jaden Chavez, Casey Fowler of Andrews, and Joey Kirk of Monahans.

>> SENIOR CHAMPIONS: Chuck Palmer of Dallas defeated Ed Brooks of Fort Worth on the first playoff hole to win the Senior division title. Both players finished the tournament at 4-under-par.

In the Super Senior Division, Doug Hopton-Jones of Mansfield took home the top spot finishing with a 3-over-par total over the weekend. Hopton-Jones won by two shots over Tom McGraw of Montgomery.

>> Follow Tony Venegas on Twitter at @OA_TVenegas

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