Willy Walsh turned back Nial Shiels Donegan on the final hole of a duel between two of the best high school players in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The 18-year-old Walsh, a senior at Serra High in San Mateo, sank a birdie putt on the last hole to beat Donegan, a senior at Tamalpais High School in Mill Valley, by one stroke in the 19th AmateurGolf.com Silicon Valley Amateur at Baylands Golf Links in Palo Alto.
“I didn’t hit it as well as yesterday and it was kind of a battle for 18 holes, but I stayed in it mentally,” said Walsh, who has 11 Junior Golf Association of Northern California events in recent seasons. “It helped that Niall was playing so well, because he was forcing me to make every single putt.”
Walsh, who tied for eighth in the 2021 AGC Christmas Classic, and lost in the semifinals of the 2022 San Francisco City Championship, posted a score of 66-68—134, 10-under-par, while Donegan, who has committed to Northwestern and finished second recently in the Pacific Grove City Championship, finished at 67-68—135.
Mitchell Hoey of Alamo carded a score of 72-67—139 to tie for third with Brandon Knight of Pleasanton, who also totaled 72-67—139, Joshua Kim of La Palma, who shot 70-69—139, and Chris Goin of Alameda, who wound up at 67-72—139.
Mike Mulhearn of Livermore was seventh at 70-70—140, followed by Eric Yun of Menlo Park, who tied for second in the 2022 Alameda Commuters, at 72-69—141.
Jack Jerge of Pleasant Hill totaled 71-71—142 to tie for ninth with Cameron Kaiser of Scottsdale, Ariz., who also finished at 71-71—142, John McCord of Richmond, who wound up at 69-73—142, and Ben Friedman of Mill Valley, who came in at 68-74—142.
Defending champion Sean-Karl Dobson of Austin, Texas, originally committed to the tournament but did not play.
Other previous winners of the AGC Silicon Valley Amateur include Collin Morikawa, Max Homa, Connor Blick, Blake Hathcoat, Randy Haag, Gregor Main and Garrett Wagner, who captured the inaugural event in 2005.
Daniel O’Connor posted a score of 68-74—142 to capture the Senior Division by three strokes over Chris Hyland, also of San Francisco, who finished at 74-71—145, and Sean Crowley of Littleton, Colo., wound up at 70-76—146.
Tony Ralph of Sunnyvale shot 74-73—147 to tie for fourth with Greg Langford of San Mateo, who also finished at 74-73—147, while Dan Young of Redwood City at 75-74—149.
Steve Donnelly of Salinas totaled 77-74—151 to tie for seventh with Michael Staskus of Los Altos, who wound up at 75-76—151, while Michael Wishart of Hillsborough was ninth at 75-79—154, followed by Gomer Piearcy of Aptos at 76-81—157.
For complete results, visit https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/9136523724856524179