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BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – Four-time and reigning Mass Golf Richard D. Haskell Player of the Year, Matt Parziale, the defending U.S. Mid-Amateur Champion who also won the 2017 Massachusetts Amateur Championship, brought his talents to South America this past weekend, where he was one of just 70 in the field at the highly touted South American Amateur Championship.
Contested at Martindale Country Club in Buenos Aires, a mere 5,300 miles south of his native Brockton, Parziale picked right up where he left off in the 2017 season, shooting a 4-day score of 6-under 282 to place T7, seven strokes off the tournament champion Chris Crisologo. Crisologo, a 21-year old from Richmond, British Columbia (Canada), went 13-under 275 (72-64-66-73) to finish with a four stroke margin of victory.
The 30-year old Parziale, who joined North Carolina’s Scott Harvey as the only two American men in the field, jumped up six spots in the fourth and final round to cap off an impressive week that pitted him against the world’s best amateur competition. After the first round, the Brockton, Massachusetts firefighter, who earned invitations to The Masters, the U.S. Open and the U.S. Amateur Championships in 2018 after winning the 2017 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship, was one of only 24 in the field to break par, firing a 1-under 71 to break into a tie for 17th place.
His 2-under par in the second round bumped him up into a tie for sixth place at the halfway point and his even-par mark in round 3 kept him among the top competitors on the leaderboard heading into the final round of competition.
In Tuesday’s final round, Parziale bounced back from two bogeys suffered over the first six holes by firing back-to-back birdies on the par-4 seventh and eighth holes, respectively. One-under marks on the par-5 12th hole and par-4 14th holes helped secure his ascension into the top-10 on Tuesday’s final round and secured his T7 finish with Gustavo Silvero of Paraguay.
Parziale entered the tournament, his first visit to South America, just outside the top-200 in the World Amateur Golf Rankings. In mid-December, the USGA announced that Parziale and Harvey, the 2015 South American Amateur Champion, would join USGA Women’s Mid-Amateur Champions Kelsey Chugg and Julie Potter as the United States representatives in the tournament, which first started in 2006.
Parziale’s finish at the South American Amateur Championship highlighted what was originally supposed to be an extremely busy span for the golfer. Winner of the 2017 Mass Golf Four-Ball, Ouimet Memorial, Tarlow Invitational, Norfolk County Classic and the Amateur Invitational among several accolades, Parziale was one of several recipients who were originally scheduled to be honored at Mass Golf’s annual Salute to Champions Dinner on Wednesday, January 17 at Wellesley Country Club.
Although the event was cancelled due to weather conditions in the area, Parziale was set to be be recognized for his accomplishments during the 2017 campaign by representatives from several organizations, both in person and via video.
Check out the video from Mike Davis, Executive Director and CEO of the USGA.