Aidan Lee of Pasadena found himself eight strokes behind entering the final round of the 26th Memorial Amateur, and incredibly wound up winning the tournament.
Lee, who will be a sophomore at St. Mary’s College in Moraga next season, closed with a bogey-free, seven-under-par 65 and then beat Mike Perchak of Alamo in a three-hole aggregate playoff to claim the title at Ancil Hoffman Golf Course in Carmichael on Memorial Day.
“A lot of the times you just had to accept your 30-footer for birdie and two-putt, or if you had a scoring opportunity take advantage of it, and that’s what I really did well today,” said Lee, who captured the 2021 Mission League Individual Championship at Brookside Golf Course in Pasadena while playing for St. Francis High School in La Canada Flintridge.
“When I called (his Dad to tell him he won the Memorial), I started tearing up. My dad has been my No. 1 guy the whole way. He’s the one who taught me the game. Unfortunately, he wasn’t here today, but he was here in my heart. It was unbelievable and so special. I wish (his parents) were here.”
Lee opened the playoff by making a birdie on the 16th hole for the second time on the day, giving him eight birdies over his last 13 holes, and when Perchak could match his birdie in the three extra holes, Lee claimed the title with a two-putt par on the 18th hole.
|Other than that, Lee’s biggest shot was 50-foot birdie putt on the 17th hole of regulation as he finished with a score of 70-75-65—210, six-under-par, which Perchak equaled at 70-67-73—210, while Matthew Sutherland of Sacramento totaled 68-70-74—212 to tie for third with Lucas Carper of San Jose, who finished at 70-69-73—212.|
Luke Davis was fifth at 69-69-75—213, while Kurtis Rodriquez of Red Bluff shot 73-72-69—214, to tie for sixth with Costas Panay of Redmond, Wash., who wound up at 78-69-67—214, and Brandon Robison of Centerville, Utah, who finished at 69-73-72—214.
Defending champion Zach Pollo of Rocklin carded a score of 70-73-72—215 to tie for ninth with Jacob Westberg of Sacramento, who came in at 71-73-71—215.
The Memorial was founded in in 1998 by Vietnam veteran John Rochelle, who is tournament director.
For complete results, visit https://www.memorialamateur.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/2023-memorial-amateur-monday-results.pdf