Anders wins first Amateur in playoff

Dawson Anders, who plays for Temple University, won the 69th annual Delaware Amateur on Wednesday in a three-way playoff. DSGA photos

BRIDGEVILLE — Dawson Anders had never played in the Delaware Amateur before.

And, like most players, the 21-year-old Temple University junior hadn’t play much competitive golf lately.

So the Telford, Pa. native was thrilled to walk away with the title in the DSGA’s 69th annual Delaware Amateur after winning a three-hole playoff on Wednesday evening.

Anders out-lasted both defending champion Evan Brown and Austin Barbin in the playoff at Heritage Shores.

“I’ve got chills right now just thinking about it,” he said in an interview on Twitter after walking off the 18th green. “If you told me a week ago I’d be 14 or 15 under through how many holes this week, I’d be like, ‘No way.’ I didn’t feel like I had it.

“But I came out here and tried to play par golf. I ran into a bunch of birdies. I’m so glad we were able to get out here and play. I love competitive golf. It’s such a fun tournament. It was my first time playing it and my first time winning it. I can’t believe it, I’m so lucky.”

The three-day, 72-hole tourney was one of the first significant sporting events played in Delaware since the coronavirus pandemic shutdown in mid-March. Recreational golf has continued to be permissible in the state because of the potential for following health guidelines in the sport.

Austin Barbin was one of three players to finish at 14-under after being near the lead for most of the tourney.

The three top finishers played some of their best golf on Wednesday, which featured a total of 36 holes in the hot, summer weather.

Brown, a 23-year-old who plays for Loyola, carded a fourth-round 64, the low round of the week, Barbin, on the other hand, pulled out an eagle-three on the par-five 18th to earn his spot in the playoff.

The three players finished at 14-under par 274 for the tournament. The playoff was held on holes No. 16, 17 and 18.

Anders, who shot 68 or lower in his first three rounds, came in with just a 73 in the fourth round. He tried not to watch the leaderboard until 18th.

“I just assumed they were right with me,” Anders said about Brown and Barbin. “I looked and they were.”

But Anders took control right away in the playoff with a birdie-two on No. 16. He and Barbin then parred the final two holes as Anders won by one stroke.

Brown finished three shots back.

Brown ended up with a tournament-high 23 birdies compared to 22 for both Anders and Barbin, the two-time Delaware high school state champion from Red Lion Christian.

Anders had a great start on Wednesday, playing the front nine at six-under par in his third round. That included chipping in for an eagle-two on No. 7.

The conditions were windy in the morning, with gusts of over 20 mph.

“Honestly, I don’t know, I wasn’t even worried about my swing,” said Anders. “I swung a different swing every single shot. Once I chipped that ball in, I was like, ‘OK, I’ve really got something going now. Don’t get ahead of myself, don’t think 59 or 60 or any of that.’ I just kept chipping away.”

Brandon Berry placed fourth at eight-under par. The top seven players finished at two-under par or lower.

The DSGA’s Junior Championship is slated for July 6 at Newark Country Club.