Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Missouri Amateur Final: Tiger vs. Jayhawk

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Missouri Amateur Final: Tiger vs. Jayhawk

Article excerpt

St. Louisan Patrick Trittler will meet Tyler Shelton of Fairway, Kan., on Sunday for the 1994 Missouri Amateur Championship. The match is scheduled for 36 holes.

Trittler is still alive in the tournament because he caught lightning in a bottle Saturday at Milburn Golf & Country Club's brute of a traditional course, with its narrow fairways and big greens. He was hanging by his fingertips after bunkering a 4-iron shot from the rough at the 18th hole in his semifinal match with St. Louisan Don Bliss, a four-time winner of the state title.

But as Trittler demonstrated more than once in the total of 40 holes he played Saturday, first against St. Louisan Jim Mason in the quarterfinals in the morning and then against Bliss in the afternoon, he has learned how to survive. Trittler saved a par 4 at the 18th with a great wedge shot from the sand and won 1-up at the 19th when he holed a 25-foot putt for a birdie 3 on the 350-yard No. 1.

Shelton reached the title match by eliminating Sam Scheibal of Edwardsville 3 and 1 in the semifinals. This sets up a twist in the state amateur championship: an MU-KU match. Trittler, 22, will be a senior at Mizzou in the fall. Shelton, 22, will be a senior at Kansas. Both play on their school's golf team.

"I don't know him at all," said Trittler, a Hazelwood Central High product. In one year, he has gone from failing to qualify for the 1993 state amateur to playing for the championship.

"It's easily been the best year I've ever had," added Trittler, who recently won the city match-play championship in Columbia, Mo.

Shelton won this year's Kansas City match-play title.

Trittler's match with Mason, 39, went to the 21st hole - No. 3, a 179-yard par 3. Trittler laced a 6-iron tee shot to 15 feet and rolled his birdie attempt tight. Mason's tee shot nestled behind a small tree, creating an almost impossible situation. His chip was short.

Mason had birdied the 17th and 18th to square the match, hitting a shot from the fairway that missed going into the cup at No. …

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