'I can't tell you how honored I am to be a USGA champion,' said Marsh, who eliminated two past champions en route to the crown, including last year's winner Austin Eaton III. 'Playing with Austin was a real eye opener for me. I can only pray that I'm half the champion he is.'
Marsh flew out of the gate on Thursday at The Honors Course, winning three of the first seven holes. He looked like he was going to lose the eighth when his tee ball went well right, but Forrester did not look much better. His tee ball landed in a collection area and the two ended up halving the hole with double bogeys.
'That was more of a gift than anything,' said Marsh. 'I hit a horrible shot and I expected to lose the hole.'
Forrester fell apart after the unlikely halve at eight. He hit it in the water at nine to lose that hole, then lipped out a 3-footer at the 10th to fall 5-down.
Marsh drained a 30-footer for birdie at the 14th and Forrester missed from 5 feet. Marsh captured the next four holes to go 10-up after the morning 18 holes.
In the morning session, Marsh shot the equivalent of a 5-under 67, with match-play concessions, while Forrester struggled to an 81.
In the second 18, the two traded wins on the front side, but at the ninth, Forrester missed a 5-footer for par. Marsh rolled in from a foot closer and closed out the match on the 27th hole.
'It's always very rewarding to play a great round when it counts,' said Marsh. 'I was frustrated after the first round of stroke play. But each round, I just kept playing better and better.'
'He played great all day and my hat's off to him,' said Forrester. 'I just couldn't put pressure on him. It's easier to play well when you're 5-up. I tried to finish strong and make a match of it but unfortunately for me, he played well as well.'