Montgomery , TX – The final match of the week is complete and Steve Galko is this year’s Mid-Am Match Play Champion after defeating Kyle Flodder 3 and 2 this morning to capture his second career state title. Galko’s dominance began four days ago when he won medalist honors by firing a 4-under par 68 during the stroke play qualifying round securing the number seed for match play going into the weekend.
Galko made it look easy right off the bat winning his first match over League City ’s Blanton Hansen 7 and 5 and then proceeded to take down Trent Booher of Sugar Land 5 and 3. It didn’t stop there as Saturday morning was more of the same defeating Bill Steen of Frisco 4 and 2 setting up a semi-final match with The Woodlands’ Mike Booker. This was a different story as Booker took the match all the to the 18th hole giving him what seemed to be the advantage. Why? Because Galko had been so dominant during the week that he hadn’t played the 18th hole in three days, and it showed as he had to scramble from a fairway bunker leaving him 100 yards to the green while his opponent sat comfortably on the green in two looking to go extra holes. However Galko had different ideas and proceeded to get up and down from the fairway which was capped off by a 20 foot putt to secure his spot in the finals.
Galko’s opponent in the finals, Kyle Flodder was somewhat as a surprise playing in his first full season of competitive amateur golf in Texas. The former TCU standout worked a bit harder to reach the finals as three of his four matches played were taken to the 18th hole for slim 1-up victories. None-the-less, he gave himself a legitimate shot at the title.
The match started off fairly even as Galko could only muster a 1-hole lead thru seven holes. But costly bogeys by Flodder on the 8th and 9th holes gave Galko a comfortable 3-up lead at the turn. Flodder fought back though as a 30 foot birdie putt on the very difficult par 5, 11th found its way to the bottom of the hole coupled with a bogey by Galko two holes later, put the match back up for grabs. The match turned on the par 4, 15th when Flodder was unable to convert a perfect tee shot finishing with a bogey putting Galko back up 2 holes. An aggressive second shot on the par 5 16th hole left Galko with a chance for birdie, which he converted to win the match 3 and 2 and take home his first state title since his victory in the 2005 Public Links Championship at Blackhorse Golf Club.
-- Texas State Golf Association