LEMONT, Ill. – After earning a spot into match play by three strokes, FGCU men’s golf junior-to-be Kyle English (Bloomington, Ill./University HS) used a three-day run of upsets as the No. 14 seed to capture the prestigious 92nd Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) Amateur Championships held at Medinah Country Club from June 28-July 1.
English used a 71-74/145(+4) in the 36-hole stroke play qualifier to finish in a tie for 11th in the field of 47 and earn a spot in the match play tournament. The three days of match play began with the round of 16 matches on June 29, while the quarterfinals and semifinals were played on June 30.
Owning wins over the No. 6 (2 & 1), No. 11 (1 up) and No. 2 (3 & 1) seeds to advance to Sunday’s 36-hole final, English squared off against No. 5 seed Andy Mickelson in the championship. Mickelson was a four-year letterwinner at Bradley University, leading the Braves in scoring average each year while being named to the All-Missouri Valley Conference first team in 2003.
Trailing Mickelson by two through 32 holes, English rallied to force the extra hole by carding a birdie on the par 4, 331-yard 15th hole and winning the 18th hole to draw even. Besides the birdie on No. 15, English’s other major highlight of the afternoon came at the par-5 10th hole where he sank a 40-foot birdie putt to halve the hole with Mickelson after his near eagle that would have put him up two.
The duo took to the 383-yard, par 4 first hole for the playoff, as English took advantage of Mickelson’s errant drive into a greenside bunker by hitting the fairway and green en route to two-putting for a par and the win.
With the victory, English, along with the other three CDGA Amateur semifinalists, is now exempt from qualifying for the 81st Illinois State Amateur Championship, Aug. 9-11, at Glen Oak Country Club in Glen Ellyn.