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Hanzel wins USGA Senior Amateur

United States Golf Association
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Doug Hanzel of Savannah, Ga., won the USGA Senior Amateur on Thursday, beating Pat O'Donnell of Happy Valley, Ore., 3 and 2, in the final at Wade Hampton Golf Club in Cashiers, N.C.

Hanzel, 56, from Savannah, Ga., matched O'Donnell's birdie on the 16th hole to end the match.

In the morning semifinals, Hanzel beat Chip Lutz of Reading, Pa., 3 and 2, and O'Donnell defeated Buzz Fly of Memphis, Tenn., 2 and 1.

Video: USGA senior championships: Articles, videos and photos

''They can't take that away from you,'' Hanzel said. ''I'm at a loss for words. I know you get a lot of perks for winning, but the perk for me is to have your name on a USGA trophy.''

''I'm dumbfounded,'' said Hanzel, the low amateur in the U.S. Senior Open the last two years. ''Really I couldn't say I envisioned being a USGA champion. It's just an unbelievable feeling. You know, you play in so many USGA events, because I think this is the 20th or 21st I qualified for, so you play in a lot of events, but realistically do you think you're going to win?

''Probably not the other ones. The Senior Amateur I thought I could win. I thought I had enough game to win. But to do it is something else because you got to win six matches. That's hard.''

Hanzel, a physician, uses an insulin pump for his diabetes.

''It was OK,'' he said. ''I had one little issue yesterday morning for the matches. I was a little low. I didn't feel well. It was kind of good that the matches got delayed yesterday, so we got things under control. Just a bump in the road.

O'Donnell, 59, from Happy Valley, Ore., is a reinstated amateur. He works as a maintenance analyst for Boeing.