Lila Galeai Comes From Behind To Win 115th Utah Women’s State Amateur
SALT LAKE CITY, Utah – BYU Women’s Golfer Lila Galeai has won the 115th Utah Women’s State Amateur after beating Alpine teenager Berlin Long in a playoff at Oakridge Country Club.
Galeai, a freshman at BYU, made a birdie putt on the 17th hole before closing her round with a par on 18 to extend play and force a playoff. Galeai is the first Utah Women’s State Amateur to require extra holes since the tournament went to a match play format in 2011.
She is also the first winner that was required to win five consecutive matches as the tournament field was expanded to 32 this year.
The playoff hole was the par 5 1st. A long, straight hole that requires confidence and skill as the green is surrounded by a body of water.
“I knew it wouldn’t be easy,” (Lila) Galeai said afterward, and she was right. She’s the first champion who required extra holes since the Utah Golf Association’s return to match play for the Women’s Am in 2011. pic.twitter.com/SOrejfJYvG
— Randy Dodson (@RandyatFairways) July 1, 2021
But by the time the playoff began, Galeai was soaring. Her birdie on 17 and par on 18 extended the match despite being down two holes with just two remaining. Long’s confidence was low and Galeai was starting to find her groove.
Unfortunately, the playoff loss for Long was not her first. Just three weeks ago she lost in the Girls 15-18 final match in the State Junior Amateur at Soldier Hollow Golf Course after her opponent birdied the 18th and 19th holes.
“Definitely very similar,” Long said. “I came up a little short in both of them, but I played good golf both weeks the whole time, so I can’t be too mad about it.”
Galeai is the 3rd 18-years or younger winner over the past 4 years, joining Tess Blair and Grace Summerhays as teenage victors.