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Norcross' Healy wins Atlanta Amateur Match Play title

Staff Photo: Jason Braverman Norcross' Zach Healy is the Daily Post boys golfer of the year. Healy shot 67 at the state tournament to win the individual title and lead Norcross to the team championship.

Staff Photo: Jason Braverman Norcross' Zach Healy is the Daily Post boys golfer of the year. Healy shot 67 at the state tournament to win the individual title and lead Norcross to the team championship.

JOHNS CREEK — Zach Healy of Peachtree Corners won the Atlanta Amateur Match Play Championship over David Noll Jr., of Dalton, in 19 holes Sunday at Rivermont Golf and Country Club.

In a final match where the momentum shifted many times, the Norcross High School senior defeated the seasoned Noll, whose name is etched on the trophy four times. The 95th playing of the annual competition spanned four days.

To start the final match, Noll got off to a quick start with birdies on the first two holes, taking an early 2-up lead. Both players matched each other's par on the next four holes before both bogeying the 573-yard, par-5 seventh hole.

Making the turn down two holes, Healy won No. 11, 13 and 14, taking a 1-up lead with four to play. The next three holes went back and forth with Noll winning 15, Healy winning 16 and Noll winning 17. Standing on the 18th tee with the match all square, both players hit drives in the fairway and both made par, sending the match to the first tee for a 19th hole.

Healy, a Georgia commitment, then secured the victory, his first, over Noll in 19 holes.

Healy made his way to the final match with four wins in two days. He topped Michael Standard of McDonough in the round of 32, 3 and 2, and then dominated Terry Rush of Buford in the round of 16, 8 and 6. In the quarterfinals, Healy met Atlanta's Brad Hondros, who recently won Rivermont's club championship, and earned the victory, 1 up. In the semifinals, Healy and Georgia Tech golfer Michael Hines of Woodstock battled before Healy clinched the win on the 18th hole, 2 up.

Noll's road to the finals began with a win over one-half of the reigning Georgia Four-Ball Championship team, Danny Nelson of Savannah, 1 up, in the round of 32. Then in the round of 16, Noll and Mitch Kim of Peachtree Corners went the distance plus some, with Noll outlasting Kim in 23 holes. In the quarterfinals, Noll defeated reigning Georgia Senior champion Jack Hall of Sea Island, 3 and 2. Noll and Jerry McFadden of Johns Creek, who is a member of Rivermont Golf and Country Club, met in the semifinals with Noll once again prevailing, 3 and 1.

The 95th annual Atlanta Amateur Match Play Championship was open to male amateur golfers who are GSGA members and the field was made up of those with the lowest USGA handicap indexes. The format was 18 holes of stroke play qualifying with the low 31 and the defending champion advancing to single-elimination match play.