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Hickman Wins Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play

Briefly: Aaron Hickman goes wire-to-wire and defeats Colby Harwell 5 and 4 at Willow Brook Country Club to win his first Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play Championship. Hickman felt the pressure all week to perform at his best in front of his home club and lived up to the challenge.

Match Play Bracket Leaderboard

Golf Course: Organized in 1922, the course at Willow Brook was designed by Ralph Plumber and newly renovated by Tripp Davis. The newly renovated 6,782-yard, par-71 layout stretches across a pristine land and features a great variety of shape and length of holes, ample fairways, artistic bunkering and small, elevated greens. Willow Brook maintains a long tradition of providing players with a top-flight course.

Weather: Sunny, humid morning with in the mid-80s and a slight variable breeze. 

Championship Match Summary: Hickman continued his torrid play throughout the week with going three up through the first six holes against Harwell. The two halved the par four 7th hole before Hickman carded two more birdies to make the turn at 5-up. Harwell won the next two holes to close the gap. With both players hitting close tee shots into the par three 12th hole, Hickman once again capitalized by draining a birdie putt and watched Harwell miss his attempt to halve the hole. Hickman continued his birdie barrage on 13 to go 5-up with five holes to play. Harwell, unable to win the par four 14th hole gave Hickman his biggest Texas Golf Association victory of his career with a 5 and 4 win.

“To play in front of the home crowd brings added pressure with all of the moving parts, but the membership here was so supportive of everything this week. They are really excited to host the 2022 Texas Amateur, which is also our 100th anniversary as a club.”

Hickman went on to say how much this victory means to him. “This is validation for all of the hard work I have put in. I have won team events, but this is special to do this on my own”.

“Getting that first birdie in each match helped settle the nerves” Hickman said. “I had four bogeys all week and played the rest of the golf at 31-under par.”

More Info: For more information on the Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play, visit the tournament homepage here.

The Texas Golf Association extends its sincere appreciation to the membership and staff at the Willow Brook Country Club for hosting this year’s Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play. The next state championship on the 2020 calendar will be the 111th Texas Amateur at Boot Ranch August 6 – 9.

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Finals Set For Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play

Briefly: Aaron Hickman’s run as the top seed continues to extend as he defeated Cole Wiederkehr 6 and 4 and 5 seed, Scott Maurer 8 and 7. Colby Harwell, the two time champion (2017 and 2019) continues his hot streak as the 14 seed, defeating Paul McNamara and Tyler Terry on Saturday at Willow Brook Country Club in Tyler.

Match Play Bracket Leaderboard/Results

Golf Course: Organized in 1922, the course at Willow Brook was designed by Ralph Plumber and newly renovated by Tripp Davis. The newly renovated 6,782-yard, par-71 layout stretches across a pristine land and features a great variety of shape and length of holes, ample fairways, artistic bunkering and small, elevated greens. Willow Brook maintains a long tradition of providing players with a top-flight course.

Weather: Mostly cloudy with a high in the mid-80s including a slight variable breeze.

In contention: Saturday morning saw the quarterfinals play out with Maurer and Harwell each winning their matches 1 up over Padden Nelson and Paul McNamara, respectively. Ensuing Tyler Terry’s 5 and 4 victory over Judd Pritchard, Harwell was able to defeat Terry 5 and 4 this afternoon to advance to the final.  Hickman continued his hot play on his home course versus Maurer with six birdies and one eagle in the eleven holes their match went.

What’s Next: The championship match will begin at 8:00 a.m. with live scoring provided.

More Info: For more information on the Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play, visit the tournament homepage here.

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Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play Set for July 23-26

TYLER – The state’s top amateur golfers age 25 and older will gather at Willow Brook Country Club for the 22nd Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play from July 23-26.

Willow Brook Country Club will be hosting its first Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play and sixth TGA championship this year. Previously the club hosted the 2019 Texas Shootout, three Texas Senior Amateurs and the 1964 Texas Amateur.

“We are extremely excited to have the opportunity to return to Willow Brook Country Club,” said Kellen Kubasak, TGA Director of Competitions. “The club has a long history of supporting amateur golf and we are confident the newly renovated course will rigorously test every facet of a player’s game and identify a worthy champion.”

Founded in 1922 on West Erwin Street, Willow Brook Country Club moved to its present site in the late 1950s. It was at that time the club opened its 18-hole course designed by Ralph Plummer. Over the years numerous upgrades have been made to the original design, and in 2018, Tripp Davis completed a comprehensive renovation that has fortified the course’s strategic playing characteristics and revitalized its natural beauty.

“Willow Brook has always been a huge supporter of the Texas Golf Association and we very much are looking forward to hosting the Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play this year and welcoming players from all over the state,” said Chris Hudson, Director of Golf at Willow Brook Country Club. “With the recent redesign by Tripp Davis, players can expect a changeling layout that demands precision shot-making and excellent course management skills.”

First conducted by the TGA in 1999, the Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play is the only individual event on the annual schedule to feature head-to-head competition.

The format is 18 holes of stroke play qualifying on July 23, with the low 32 scores advancing to match play. First- and second-round matches will be played Friday, July 24; quarterfinals and semifinals on Saturday, July 25; and the final on Sunday, July 26. All matches are 18 holes.

At last year’s championship, held at Shadow Hawk Golf Club in Richmond, Corby Harwell of San Antonio Dallas defeated Jake Istnick of Dallas, 5 and 3, in the final match. It was the fourth TGA statewide mid-amateur victory for Harwell in the past three years. In 2017, Harwell won both the Texas Mid-Amateur Match Play and Texas Mid-Amateur Championships and successfully defended his Texas Mid-Amateur title in 2018.

Once the action gets under way from Willow Brook, log on to txga.org for live scoring updates and daily recaps, as well as match play brackets and starting times.

ABOUT THE TGA: Founded in 1906 as the governing body of amateur golf in Texas, the TGA is an official representative of the United States Golf Association and the only licensed distributor of USGA GHIN Handicaps. We serve all golfers across Texas with elite competitive championships and recreational playing opportunities for men, women, seniors and juniors. The TGA is represented by hundreds of public and private facility Member Clubs throughout the state. It is our honor and responsibility to promote, protect and grow the game of golf on all levels. To learn more, click here.