Christian Sease described the last week as the best week of golf he has ever had, and that included the week he won the 2016 Carolinas Amateur.
The Green Valley member made it to the quarter finals at the US Mid-Am championship in Massachusetts on Wednesday.
When he was knocked out in the quarterfinals by eventual champion Stuart Hagestad, he flew home, got in at 11:30pm on Thursday, and teed it up on Friday morning in the South Carolina Golf Association Mid-Am championship at his home club.
“If it hadn’t been at Green Valley I probably wouldn’t have played,” he said. “I got off to a rough start, but it obviously turned out pretty good,” said the 2021 SCGA Mid-Am champion.
Sease didn’t look like a future champion the way the event started for him.
The former Winthrop University golfer opened play in the state version of the event with a double bogey.
“I hit my first tee shot out of bounds and made a double bogey,” he recalled.
It took Sease till the turn to shake off the travel and the fatigue of already playing 106 holes of golf in the week.
“When I got to the back nine ( Green Valley’s front nine) I got things going and managed to get back to even. I got a good nights sleep Friday and felt much better Saturday morning,” he said.
While Sease was recovering from the travel and extended play, Chad Siefert took the first round lead.
Siefert shot an opening round 7-under par 65 to hold a one shot lead over Sam Jackson and two shots over Spencer Skiff from Columbia, Todd White from Spartanburg and Greenville’s Jeremy Revis.
In the second round, Revis made his first bogey of the tournament on his 17th hole, but not before he birdied 8 holes added another one after the bogey and shot his way to the lead with a 64.
Siefert was four shots back, Walt Todd Junior was five shots back and there was a three way tie for fourth.
Revis, the former Greenville County Amateur champion held the lead going into the final round.
Sease improved by seven shots in his second round to shoot a 65, but was still six shots behind the leader.
“I just wanted to go out and give myself some birdie opportunities in the final round,” he said.
And he did.
Sease birdied his first two holes, eagled his sixth hole and then birdied two more to make the turn at 6-under par 30 and his play earned him a share of the lead.
“Going six under so fast got me back in it. I wanted to keep trying. I didn’t want to just hold on and protect the lead,” he said.
While Sease was going six under par on the front, the tournament leader, Revis, was doing the opposite.
“I guess it was nerves,” said Revis. “I only had one bogey in the first two days, but I got my share of them today,” he said.
The eighth hole is where Revis lost the lead. Sease birdied the hole while Revis bogeyed.
Sease made the biggest move on Revis during the first nine holes, but he wasn’t the only golfer moving up to the lead.
Todd, Jr got to 12 under par with five birdies in his first six holes to take the lead for a short time.
On the back nine Sease took control of the championship. He built a two-shot lead over Todd and three shots over Revis.
Todd made only one birdie on the back nine to finish at 5-under par 67 in third.
After giving away shots on the front nine, Revis took a few back late in the round.
He eagled number 16 from 5 feet, missed a birdie chance on 17 and rolled in a 10-footer for another birdie on 18 to finish with a 1-under par 71 and a 202 total.
“I was hoping something crazy would happen. I got the eagle, but needed two birdies on the last two holes to have a chance. It is pretty hard to beat somebody who throws an 8-under par at you in the last round,” he said.
Sease’s birdie on the same 15th hole in front of Revis gave the leader a little breathing room.
“I didn’t know if that won it for me, but I thought it would at least get me in a playoff. I’m glad we didn’t need a playoff. With all the golf I’ve played this week I don’t know if I could have gone on,” he joked.
Sease stood over a 3 footer on the last hole needing it to drop to maintain his lead over Revis and earn the win.
“I told myself I needed to make it and I did, I was blessed,” he said.
Revis finished his round with a birdie right behind Sease, but it would leave him one short of the winner.
“I tried to be patient and believe in myself. With the belief I played more confident, but right now I’m exhausted,” said the Sease.
Revis finished second a shot back at 202 with Todd in third at 203. J.D.Lehman worked up to fourth place and Siefert rounded out the top-5.
Winning an SCGA title had been a goal for Sease since losing in the final round of the Ford-Picard Junior tournament as a teen and struggling in state amateurs.
The win satisfied another goal for Sease who has been a Green Valley member for a year and a half.
“I’ve not been able to win a club championship here in two tries so I am really happy to finally get a win at my home club,” said the 2021 SCGA Mid-Am champion.
Scores from the SCGA Mid-Am Championship at Green Valley in Greenville www.golfgenius.com/pages/2793372