LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Former Dartmouth men's golfer Peter Williamson won the prestigious Southern Amateur Championship Sunday afternoon with a birdie on the third hole of a sudden death playoff. The event celebrated its 106th year of competition in 2012 and was hosted by the Chenal Country Club on the Bear Den Course.
Williamson bested Bobby Wyatt of Mobile, Ala., and the Crimson Tide with a three on the third playoff hole after both men tied for the top with a 12-under through four rounds. The 27-foot birdie putt was the difference as Wyatt missed a 20-footer just after that would've kept play going had he made it.
Entering the weekend, Wyatt was ranked as the No. 1 amateur player in the world according to Scratch Player rankings. However a No. 1 ranking in the world did little to intimidate Williamson, an All-American, three-time Ivy League Player of the Year and most recently being named the 2012 New England Golfer of the Year as selected by the region's head coaches.
Williamson and Wyatt entered the final round at minus-7 before the Hanover native and recent Dartmouth graduate put some distance between the two, building a four-shot lead at the turn.
Wyatt fought back, eventually taking the lead, before Williamson picked up a shot on the 15th with a nice approach to within three feet of the pin.
The two played out their playoff on holes 1 and 18 where Williamson earned the win and an invitation to Bay Hill and the Arnold Palmer Invitational next season on the PGA Tour. For the invitation to still hold true at the time of the tournament, Williamson must still hold amateur status.
Williamson shot a five-under 67 on the final day to force the playoff with the world's top amateur golfer, his lowest total of the weekend (70-69-70-67-276)
The Bear Den is a 7,326-yard course (72).
Williamson also won the 2012 North & South Amateur at Pinehurst earlier this month.