Senior Am battle between medalist, defending champ October 4, 2010 By Christina Lance, USGA

Orlando, Fla. – It will be the master versus the pupil when medalist Pat Tallent faces defending champion Marvin Vinny Giles in a third-round match Tuesday afternoon at the 2010 USGA Senior Amateur Championship.

Tallent, 57, of Vienna, Va., survived a 1-up decision over Dave Szewczul, 56, of Farmington, Conn., while the 67-year-old Giles of Richmond, Va., holed a 33-foot birdie putt at the 18th hole to eliminate Bev Hargraves of Helena, Ark.

Neither Tallent or Szewczul held more than a 1-up lead throughout their second-round match on Tuesday morning. The match was all square at the par-4 18th hole, but Tallent prevailed when his short par putt was conceded.

Tallent, who admitted to struggling through his opening match on Monday, felt much more at home Tuesday on the 6,691-yard, par-72 Tom Fazio design.

I played much better today, but we both missed a couple of putts, said Tallent, who shared medalist honors last year but lost in the first round. I missed a short one on 17 to let him halve the hole, so we came all square. And then he missed the one on 18 to let me win. So it evened out, but I did play better today.

Tallent’s afternoon opponent will be someone he affectionately calls his hero. Giles, who also won the 1972 U.S. Amateur and was a member of four USA Walker Cup Teams, held a 3-up lead after four holes against the 59-year-old Hargraves. 

Hargraves, however, did not go down without a fight, making consecutive birdies at Nos. 8 and 9, and capitalizing on Giles’ bogey at the par-4 10th hole to square the match.

Giles regained his lead at the par-3 13th hole and finally drained an improbable birdie putt at the 18th hole to win the match, 1 up.

Why it went in, I have no idea, said a smiling Giles, who converted a clutch birdie at the 18th hole in last year’s Senior Amateur final at Beverly Country Club in Chicago. I think some people thought I was going to make it, but I didn’t. I was just trying to get it close and go to the 19th hole.

Tallent and Giles, who played two practice rounds together upon their arrival at Lake Nona, were scheduled to play at 1:45 p.m. EDT.

Another notable second-round match saw British Seniors Amateur champion Paul Simson of Raleigh, N.C., defeat fellow North Carolinian Logan Jackson by a 4-and-3 margin.

Chip Lutz of Reading, Pa., winner of the 2010 North & South Senior Amateur, defeated past 2002 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion George J. Zahringer III of New York, N.Y., 1 up, while 2007 Senior Amateur champion Stanford Lee of Heber Springs, Ark., defeated Dan Bieber of Alamo, Calif., 2 and 1.

Past Senior Amateur champion Greg Reynolds of Grand Blanc, Mich., rallied from a 3-down deficit with seven to play to defeat USGA Executive Committee member Steve Smyers of Lakeland, Fla., in 19 holes.

Christina Lance is the USGA’s coordinator of championship communications. Contact her with questions and comments at clance@usga.org.