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No expectations equal no pressure for Galloway

Published July 1, 2007


One golfer's successful approach to winning a major state tournament may be worth trying by aspiring players. Not that Valrico's Matthew Galloway invented the approach, but he said he came into the 90th State Amateur Championship without expectations and without a goal other than to execute his shot to the best of his ability.

After 72 holes over four days, Galloway took the winner's trophy Sunday at Innisbrook's Copperhead course, shooting rounds of 69-70-70-71 for 4-under 280. One round was played on Innisbrook's Island course.

"I'm completely stoked to have won this tournament, " said Galloway, 21, a senior at the University of West Florida. "I didn't come here with lofty expectations, and I think that helped my approach to the tournament. And I didn't pay any attention to what others were doing. I just concentrated on the shot in front of me."

Galloway did want to know where he stood after parring the 17th hole Sunday and watching 2005 champion Ryan Abbate of Fort Lauderdale drain a long birdie putt. He learned he was still two up with only the long 445-yard par-4 18th to play. Galloway parred the final hole and secured the coveted title over runnerup Song Jeon of Tallahassee by two strokes.

Jhared Hack, 17, of Sanford tied for third with Gainesville's Tyson Alexander shooting 1-under 283.

Michael Barbosa of St. Petersburg was the top Pinellas finisher, tying for 22nd at 293 after shooting steady rounds of 73-72-75-73. Barbosa, a 2006 graduate of Georgia Tech where he earned All-America honors, will enroll at Stetson Law School in the fall.

The other Pinellas players who made the 36-hole cut at Innisbrook were Safety Harbor's P.J. Kolosvary, who opened with 1-under 70 and finished at 294, plus Clearwater's Zach Sobel, a junior at Palm Harbor University who finished at 297.

FLORIDA JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP: Belleair's Evan Jensen shot a second-round 4-under 68 at Winter Garden last week in the Girls Championship to finish at 138, a stroke behind Vicky Hurst. Hurst is the defending state high school Class A titleist. Meghan Chapman of Seminole shot 71-76-147, tying for seventh.

AJGA: Andrea Messer of Largo finished strong with 1-over 73 for 226 in the First American Title Classic at Avila to claim a share of second in a star-studded junior field. Cape Coral's Michelle Shin won at 217. Chapman tied for 10th at 239. Among the boys, St. Petersburg's Andy Quintero shot 82-79-74-235, tying for 31st, three ahead of Clearwater's Mark Wilkins and four better than Redington Beach's Travis Ralph.

NATIONWIDE TOUR: Besides Gulfport's Kyle McCarthy, who finished second at last week's Knoxville Open, another Pinellas native was in the mix. Brad Quiri (East Lake High/USF), survived a playoff in the Monday qualifier to get into the field, then shot an opening-round 5-under 67 and 70 in the second round to make the cut. He finished 59th at 289. Quiri won the 2004 State Amateur.

CGA: Belleair Country Club's Courtney Burdick was half of the better-ball winning team last week at the club where she works in the pro shop. Teamed with John Brandvik, they shot 6-under 66 for first place, three shots up on Rick Anderson and Dan Johnson. Richard Bullock of Clearwater and Bill Sanders posted the same winning score in the senior division, besting the team of Tony Spada and Ray Ludwin (72). The net winners were Stany Lewis with Bobby Jolley at 62, plus Vivian Marra and Valerie Pyles winning among women with 71.

JUNIOR CAMPS: The First Tee programs of Clearwater and St. Petersburg have clinics and programs throughout the summer months for teens and younger youths. For details, call (727) 742-7307 in Clearwater and (727) 551-3300 in St. Petersburg.

[Last modified June 30, 2007, 23:24:20]

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