EAST LOTHIAN, Scotland --- The chase for the 2010 British Amateur championship is over for Chattanooga rising junior Stephan Jaeger. He dropped a 1 up decision to Arizona State's James Byrne at the famed links at Muirfield in Scotland Thursday.
It was a see-saw match from the start. Byrne won the first followed by Jaeger evening the match on the second with a birdie. After going one down at four, Jaeger eagled five to get back to level again.
Byrne, the 20th-ranked player in the world, captured holes six and seven for a two up lead, but Jaeger evened the ledger with three straight birdies as both players were off to good starts. Byrne was 1 up through 14 when a Jaeger par captured 15 to make it even once again.
The match was all square heading to 18. With both players on in regulation, Byrne sunk a 30-footer while Jaeger's 18-footer just missed to give Byrne a 1 up win. It is the second year in a row that Jaeger has lost in the round of 32.
It was a strong championship for the 2010 Southern Conference Player of the Year. Jaeger qualified for match play by virtue of his 36-hole total of one-under par, 141, in stroke play earlier in the week. The finish should push Jaeger into the top 100 in the world golf rankings where he is currently No. 103.