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Alabama's Furr captures U.S. Amateur medalist honor

40 days ago
Alabama Athletics
Photo: Alabama Athletics

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BANDON, Ore. - Alabama senior Wilson Furr enjoyed a historic day during the second round of the 120th U.S. Amateur championship Tuesday, recording 11 birdies to finish with a 9-under par 62. In doing so, Furr becomes the second Crimson Tide men's golfer to capture U.S. Amateur medalist honors in program history, finishing stroke play with a 36-hole score of 11-under par 132 (70-62). With his second-round performance, Furr set the Bandon Trails competitive course record, carding the second-best single round score in a U.S. Amateur and United States Golf Association (USGA) history. Only Billy Horschel's round of 60 at the 2006 U.S. Amateur was better than the round Furr carded Tuesday afternoon. As a result, the Jackson, Miss., native will be the top seed entering round of 64 match play portion Wednesday morning.

"It is a great feeling obviously," Furr said following his record-setting round. "I got off to really good start with birdies on the first two holes. Coach (Jay) Seawell has been adamant on strategizing and has talked to me about trying pace myself, move a little slower and conserve energy. That's honestly all I was thinking out there in between shots. I wasn't focused on my score but was more thinking about not making a mental mistake and making smart decisions."

After carding a 2-under par 70 on the 72, 6,958-yard Bandon Dunes course Monday, Furr caught fire on the par 71, 6,863-yard Bandon Trails course Tuesday. He opened his round with back-to-back birdies and finished the front nine with seven birdies compared to just one bogey, resulting in a front-nine 31. He went on to birdie five of his first seven holes on the back nine before ending his round with a bogey on 17 and a birdie on 18 to result in a matching 31 on the back nine.

"What an outstanding round for Wilson," UA head coach Jay Seawell said. "He is someone who has worked tremendously hard behind the scenes to improve his game. The part I am most proud of is this was all self-driven. He's been kind to bounce ideas off me and (assistant) coach (Jon) Howell, but I love it when a young person puts their mind to something, works their tail off and ends up getting the results. I am so happy for him and proud of what he has accomplished. I just got off the phone with him and I told him to enjoy this one tonight because he just beat a bunch of very good players on a tough course in difficult conditions. I know everything starts new with match play tomorrow, so I told him to get some rest, enjoy it and be sure to get a milkshake tonight because I know I am."

Furr became the second Alabama men's golfer in program history to win the stroke play portion of a U.S. Amateur, joining Bobby Wyatt in 2012 who won medal honors at Cherry Hills. Former great Jerry Pate is the only UA golfer to ever win the U.S. Amateur championship, capturing the match-play title in 1974.

"It hasn't sunk in that I am the U.S. Amateur stroke-play champion," Furr said.