Galeai takes home Utah Women’s State Amateur Championship
FARMINGTON, Utah – Despite early putting woes, BYU’s Lila Galeai came roaring back to claim the 115th Utah Women’s State Amateur Championship in 19 holes at Oakridge Country Club on Thursday.
Galeai got off to a slow start in the championship match halving the first three holes and losing the fourth to high school senior Berlin Long. She would go on to birdie the par-4 seventh hole to square the match but couldn’t capitalize on birdie attempts on eight and nine.
“She wasn’t playing her game,” said BYU coach Carrie Roberts. “I was just waiting for her to turn it on, and I felt it was only a matter of time. She is such a competitor that you knew she would make a run.”
As the group made the turn, Long answered with a birdie of her own at the par-4 10th to take a 1-up lead. Galeai and Long halved the next four holes before a bogey from Galeai would put her 2-down with three to play. After halving the 16th hole with pars to make the match dormie, Galeai turned it on.
“I knew what I needed to do coming into the last two holes,” Galeai said. “I had so much confidence in my driver and missing that birdie putt on 16 got me super pumped to just crush my driver as hard as I could. From there I was able to stick my wedge close and roll in the birdie putt.”
Galeai’s birdie on 17 cut the deficit to one with the par-4 18th to play. After Long found the bunker with her approach shot at 18 and failed to get up-and-down, Galeai’s par forced the match to extra holes.
On the 19th hole, Galeai outdrove Long and was able to reach the green in two setting up a 45 foot eagle putt to win the match. Although the putt narrowly missed, Galeai tapped in for birdie forcing Long to make her long birdie putt to extend the match. Long’s putt looked good but slid by the hole, crowning Galeai as the 115th Utah Women’s Open Champion.
“Winning the Utah State Am means a lot,” Galeai said. “I’m glad that I was able to play some really solid golf this week and that I was able to play with some really great girls.”
Road to the Championship Match
Stroke Play Qualifying – 72 – 2nd
Round of 32 – def. Kerstin Fotu 4&2
Round of 16 – def. Jobi Einerson 5&4
Round of 8 – def. Carissa Graft 6&4
Final 4 – def. Tess Blair in 19 holes
Championship Match – def. Berlin Long in 19 holes.