Werkmeister Wins Michigan Am

Golf Association of MichiganLINDEN - Self-described pessimist Tom Werkmeister is finally seeing the glass as half full. The 41-year-old from Kentwood defeated University of Michigan sophomore Matt Thompson 3 & 2 to win the GAM Michigan Amateur at Spring Meadows Country Club on Saturday.

"I am really quite shocked," said Werkmeister. "I've always been kind of a pessimistic person. I never thought I could win this tournament, but here I am."

Werkmeister is not a huge fan of match play and had a slow start in his final round against Thompson. Thompson was 1 up after 5, then went 2 up after 6 and it wasn't until the 8th hole that momentum started to go in Werkmeister's direction. He won that hole, and then won the next five holes.

"Number 8 kind of turned the match around for whatever reason," said Werkmeister. "When I was three down I really didn't know if I could win but then when I won 9 I thought I had a chance."

Werkmeister's wife Leslie caddied for him despite an ailing knee and foot. Throughout the tournament she kept encouraging him and Werkmeister believes she definitely helped spark the comeback in his final round. After the 7th hole, she quietly told him to calm down and his winning streak began on the next hole.

"My mindset was probably terrible like it usually is," he said. "My wife tries to really put some positive thoughts in my head even though in my head I am screaming for her to be quiet,� Werkmeister said. "I didn't know if she would make it the last round. But she was going to do whatever it took to walk around the golf course. It was really, really cool to have her there with me."

Werkmeister's win may have given him a whole new outlook on match play. The next time he competes in a match play tournament he will go in with the idea that he could win.

"I think my mindset is completely different than it used to be," said Werkmeister. "Now I come into the tournaments thinking that I am going to see how far I can go. Now I believe I can at least get to the finals."

Thompson (Battle Creek) complimented Werkmeister on his steady play.

"He didn't make many mistakes and he doesn't make many mistakes ever," said Thompson. "I just kept trying to hit the green, hit the green but I just couldn't get anything going. You just hope some good luck comes your way."

 

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