Story by Richard L. Stevens, Jr.
Routines were disrupted at The Resort at Glade Springs during Tuesday’s second round of the 98th West Virginia Amateur presented by Mercedes-Benz. A weather delay that reached 3 hours, 37 minutes, saw players ambling about, napping in the clubhouse, and eating meals earlier than usual. As for 16-year-old Charles Town resident Christian Boyd, he remained unaffected. Boyd followed a 1-under 70 on Monday with a 3-under 68 to sit alone at the top of the leaderboard on the 6,979-yard, par 71 Cobb Course. “I hit a lot of greens today,” said Boyd, who hit 15 greens in regulation. “I was having fun out there. I wasn’t really that nervous today.” Boyd is one stroke ahead of two-time champion Sam O’Dell, two strokes in front of Charleston’s Will Evans and Scott Depot’s Chris Williams, and three ahead of 2014 Amateur titlist and Hurricane resident Brian Anania. No other players in the field were below par, with Morgantown’s Mark Johnson at even and first-round leader Tad Tomblin of Hamlin shooting 4-over on Tuesday to fall to seventh.
The tourney’s second round resumes at 7 a.m. on Wednesday, with nine groups yet to finish. The 72-hole championship, which has a projected cut line of 157, is expected to start the third round around 10 a.m., weather permitting. The low 60 scores and ties will continue play at that time, weather permitting. Tuesday’s extended delay might have affected some players, but only O’Dell had teed off before play was stopped.
Rain and thunder made their presence felt at mid-morning, resulting in the clearing of the course at 10:33 a.m. Boyd, who was in a group with Mullens’ Derek Brooks and Oceana’s Hunter Owens, were on No. 5. Upon their return to the course at 2:10 p.m. under a steady rain, Boyd bogeyed No. 6, but finished with four birdies and one bogey. He had birdies on 14 and 15, and putts on 16, 17, and 18, but had to settle for pars. His wedge approach on No. 18 left a ball mark 12 inches past the hole, but the ball spun back to 20 feet. The skies cleared, with rain and thunder surrendering to cooler conditions and more red numbers on the leaderboard. Boyd was in no mood to be content with his surprising first-round performance on the lengthy Cobb track. “I didn’t want to short side myself,” said Boyd, who tied for third at the State High School Championships in October, helping the Patriots finish as runners-up. “I was going after pins, staying below the hole, hitting the right spots.” All the while his father, Chris Boyd, was in the group right behind the teenager.
O’Dell, defending champion Alan Cooke and Beckley’s Isaiah Zaccheo were on the No. 1 fairway when play was stopped. Cooke followed his first-round 76 by shooting even and is tied for 12th. He earned an exemption into the 2016 Greenbrier Classic following his Amateur championship. However, the PGA Tour event was cancelled after major flooding in southern West Virginia. Cooke was awarded an exemption into this year’s event July 2-9. O’Dell, meanwhile, was 3-under on Tuesday, which included a one-stroke penalty for inadvertently hitting his ball on No. 6. O’Dell returned the ball to its original spot and penalized himself. “I hit some good shots coming in, but you still have to be on the right side of the hole,” O’Dell said. “I was above the hole on 17 and you can three-putt that more than you can one-putt it. On 18, actually was one of my better shots I hit … I thought I might’ve stuffed that one. “I’m pleased. I feel like I hit the ball better (Tuesday) than I did (Monday). I had a good warmup this morning and kind of regrouped after the suspension. It was definitely the right call (to suspend play).”
For more information on the 98th WV Amateur Championship presented by Mercedes-Benz and the West Virginia Golf Association please visit us online at www.wvga.org.
** Round 2 was suspended for darkness at 8:45PM. Current results and standings can be found online.**