Golf

Kevin Ault birdies final hole to win Cedar Rapids City Amateur

Ault edges out James, Even to win tournament

Kevin Ault putts the ball on the last hole in the final round of the Cedar Rapids City Amateur golf tournament on Sunday at Ellis Golf Course in Cedar Rapids. (Ryan Young/The Gazette)
Kevin Ault putts the ball on the last hole in the final round of the Cedar Rapids City Amateur golf tournament on Sunday at Ellis Golf Course in Cedar Rapids. (Ryan Young/The Gazette)
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CEDAR RAPIDS — Standing nearly 100 yards out from the ninth green at Ellis Golf Course on Sunday, Jordan Even, Chris James and Kevin Ault were looking at nearly identical situations.

The three were all tied at 5-under par on the final hole of the Cedar Rapids Men’s City Amateur golf tournament, and had been throughout the entire round. They each stepped up to their ball, attempting to land an approach shot near the hole, knowing that a birdie would likely win the tournament.

James went first, but his ball bounced left and landed in the pond by the green. He ended up bogeying the hole, and taking third in the tournament.

Ault was up next, landing his ball inside 10 feet of the hole. Then Even took his turn, matching Ault’s shot. It was down to them.

Ault stepped up to his ball and skillfully drilled the putt for birdie. Even had a chance, but his ball just missed the hole, giving him par.

Finally, Ault had won.

“(I was thinking about) just hitting it close, just giving yourself an opportunity to make a putt,” Ault said. “I didn’t putt very well all weekend. I hit a lot of greens, so it was nice to hit it in tight. I had a really good look up the hill. I made that one. It was about time.”

Ault finished the round on Sunday with a 4-under par 68, giving him a three-day total of 210 after shooting a 70 at Gardner Golf Course on Saturday and an even par on Friday at Ellis.

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Ault has finished second several times in the tournament in the past. So after finally getting to the top, he said it’s a fantastic feeling.

“It took me some time to get over the hump,” Ault said. “I’ve been around it. I’ve been in the winner’s circle, and I’ve been on the other side too. I think that that experience helps you and catapults you to the next stage. It was good. It hasn’t really sunk in yet, but I look forward to the next few days.”

Even took second place with a three-day total of 211, and James took third with a three-day total of 212.

Tim Ingwersen won the Senior City Amateur, which expanded to a third day of play this year and joined the Men’s Amateur Tournament for the final day of play. Ingwersen shot a 74 on Sunday, giving him a three-day total of 215 and the championship by seven strokes.

So even though it was close all day long, and undoubtedly nerve-racking on the back nine for the final group, Even said that’s what kept the three of them alive.

And in the end, both he and Ault said it was just a fun, competitive day of golf.

“It just seemed like any time I’d make a putt, he’d make a putt,” Even said. “I’d miss, he’d miss. It was just back and forth all day. Chris was there all day. That’s what kept us going, was how close it was. I just think our competitive nature is what kept us going all day long.”

MCCARTY WINS IOWA CITY AMATEUR

Chad McCarty won his 13th Iowa City Men's City Amateur title Sunday, firiing a 1-under at Finkbine to rally from second place and beat the field by five strokes.

Cody Thompson finished second, the only other player to break par Sunday (1-under). JD Goodfellow was third.

l Comments: ryan.young@thegazette.com

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