Eagle on Nine Helps Hossler Maintain Lead at Southern Amateur


OOLTEWAH, TN – Tied for the lead at the time and facing a 100-yard shot into the lake-guarded, par-4 ninth hole at the Honors Course on Friday, University of Texas star sophomore Beau Hossler said he was just trying to take the spin off his wedge approach to keep it from backing into the water. Instead, it took one hop and backed into the cup for an eagle two that separated him from the packed leaderboard in the 108th Southern Amateur.

      The rare feat gave the Mission Viejo, CA, native a sudden 3-shot lead and contributed to a 2-under 70 and a 208 total into Saturday’s final round. Two shots back is Virginia Tech All-ACC performer Trevor Cone from Concord, NC. South Carolina’s Will Starke nailed a 7-iron approach to within two inches of the final hole for a rain-soaked birdie that left him three back at 211.

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      Hossler, from Mission Viejo, CA., said it was a tough day, with constant rain adding to the challenges of The Honors Course. "It’s nice to be leading, but I can’t go out tomorrow and play an average round to win. This course is tough enough without the pressure and the strong field."

     The pressure was too much, apparently, for 36-hole co-leader Greyson Murray of Raleigh, NC. Frustrated by several missed short putts, Murray suffered a lost ball drive into the woods on the 17th hole and promptly withdrew despite being 1-under par for the tournament with a full round left to play on Saturday.

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108th Southern Amateur, 3rd Round Leaders

The Honors Course, Ooletewah TN; Par 72,  7,155 yards.

Beau  Hossler, Mission Viejo CA…..70-68-70–208

Trevor Cone, Raleigh NC……………..68-72-70–210

Will Starke, Chapin SC…………….70-69-72–211

Geoff Drakeford, Australia…………68-74-70–212

M.J. Masguire, St. Pete FL……………69-72-72–213

Victor Perez, Albuquerque, NM…….72-70-71–213

Jorge Garcia, Miami FL………………..74-71-69–214

A.J. Crouch, Jacksonville FL…………74-69-72–215

Alex Cusumano, St. Louis MO……..72-68-75–215


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Rick Nyman grew up in Anniston, Alabama and attended the University of Alabama. His television career started at WJSU-TV in Anniston where he had the opportunity to cover SEC football with Alabama and Auburn. Anniston is just 20 minutes from the Talladega Speedway, so NASCAR was a big part of his sports coverage. Due to this he was able to interview Davey Allison, Dale Earnhardt, Jeff Gordon, and several other top-name NASCAR drivers. Rick's next television job was in Savannah, Georgia, where he covered basketball player Kwame Brown (now with the Washington Wizards), who later became the first ever high school player selected as the top pick in the NBA draft. He covered the PGA Tour's annual swing thru Hilton Head and also had the opportunity of covering the Atlanta Falcons Super Bowl appearance in 1999 in Miami. Rick especially enjoys all the atmosphere, tradition and drama of college football. He also likes profiling sports personalities and learning what drives them both on and off the field. If he's not covering sports, he's either watching Seinfield or David Letterman, playing golf, reading, or working out. What he enjoys about Chattanooga is the passion people have for sports. The mountainous region of Chattanooga reminds him of his hometown of Anniston, which also has big, beautiful trees and plenty of hills. You can contact Rick at rnyman@wdef.com.