WILMINGTON (WNCT) – Carter Jenkins, a rising junior at the University of North Carolina, eagled the 17th hole to take the lead and held on for a come-from-behind victory in the 2015 North Carolina Amateur Golf Championship played at the Country Club of Landfall’s Jack Nicklaus Course.
Jenkins finished the four-day event at 11-under 277, one shot ahead of Guilford College head coach Justin Tereshko. The win was Jenkins’ seventh Carolinas Golf Association title. He also has won two CGA Amateurs, the North Carolina Junior Amateur and a North Carolina Match Play Amateur.
Jenkins, a Raleigh native, entered Sunday’s fourth and final round in second place, trailing Tereshko by three shots. Jenkins fired a 4-under 68 today, the second-best round of the day and one of only 12 rounds Sunday played below par.
Defending champion Josh Martin of Pinehurst finished 16th. Martin will be a freshman on the UNC men’s golf and a teammate of Jenkins, next season.
Jenkins won the event by dominating the par 5s all week, including Sunday. He played the par 5s in 10-under par for the four days, including -5 in the final round.
Jenkins entered the fourth round at -7, but eagled the par 5 opening hole and birdied the par 5 seventh to get to 10 under, two back of the leader. Tereshko had bogeys at eight and 11 to fall back into a tie with Jenkins at -10.
Jenkins then bogeyed the 13th hole to move a shot back, but took the lead by dropping an eagle at the 505-yard 17th. The eagle three sent Jenkins a shot ahead of Tereshko and two clear of Thomas Eldridge of Raleigh, who finished third.
Jenkins hit a 6-iron from 191 yards out on the 17th hole that stopped 12 feet from the hole. However, he says the 16th hole was really the key to his winning the title.
“I really had not done a lot on the back side,” says Jenkins. “I was making lots of pars and made a really bad bogey on 13 to go one down. The 16th hole is fronted by water and I had 116 to the pin, but my approach carried the water by about a foot. I could easily had made double, but I made par and then eagled 17.”
On the 18th hole, Jenkins struck a wedge to within 12 feet, and two putted for par and the title.
Jenkins played in seven events for the Tar Heels this spring after transferring mid-year from UNCG. He finished a season-best fourth at the Lamkin San Diego Classic and was Carolina’s second-low scorer at the NCAA Chapel Hill Regional.
Jenkins will next play in the North-South Amateur on June 29-July 3 at Pinehurst No. 2.