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Mechanicburg teammates, Schuler finish 1-2-3 in City Amateur

Caleb Westfall chips from behind the No. 8 green Saturday, July 18 on the Reid Park North Course. He got close enough to save par on the par 3. Westfall won his second straight City Amateur title.
Caleb Westfall chips from behind the No. 8 green Saturday, July 18 on the Reid Park North Course. He got close enough to save par on the par 3. Westfall won his second straight City Amateur title.

The old Mechanicsburg High School 1-2 punch of Caleb Westfall and Mack Cushman was together again Saturday in the final round of the Springfield City Amateur. And the old guard of the tournament, the ageless Dan Schuler, was punching again.

From youngest to oldest, they finished 1-2-3.

Westfall, 20, shot a final-round 76 on Reid Park’s North Course but coasted nonetheless to a 5-under par 11-shot victory for his second straight City Am title. Westfall entered the day with a 10-shot lead on three golfers after opening rounds of 69 and 66.

“Thankfully I played well the first two days so I didn’t have to play my A game the last day,” said Westfall, a junior on the Findlay University team. “It’s still nice to finish up strong and come in with a win.”

Cushman, 22, was a senior and Westfall a sophomore when they led their high school team to the Division III state tournament in 2015. Cushman shot 73 Saturday to surge to a runner-up finish at 6-over par.

“After I saw Westfall’s two scores, I said you gotta play for second,” Cushman said. “Second place is still really good because he’s a hell of a competitor.”

In the afternoon heat and some tricky breezes at times, Cushman managed to avoid big numbers and big mistakes to shoot the day’s best score.

“Seventy-three with this wind and these pins, that’s good playing,” Westfall said. “I’m real happy to see him finish second.”

Cushman played the past two years at Urbana University, which closed at the end of this past school year. He has two and a half years of eligibility remaining and expects to finish at Ashland or Ohio Dominican.

Schuler, 75, is an eight-time champion and eight-time runner-up. He began the day 1-over par tied for second with Kyle Glaser and Matt Williams and playing in the final group. It seemed he would add to his runner-up total when he finished with a 78, while Williams came in at 80 and Glaser at 81. But Cushman, playing in the group ahead of them, snagged second by a stroke.

“Definitely a different way of golfing,” Westfall said. “We were hitting it probably 60 yards past him. He finds a way – fairways, greens and he putted the lights out today. There’s definitely many ways to do it.”

Schuler tied for third at 7-over par with William McDavid, who plays for Wittenberg and played in high school for Triad and Urbana. McDavid shot 75 Saturday.

Schuler can credit his first-round finish for his third-place finish. On North No. 18, he holed out a pitching wedge from 109 yards for an eagle on his 75th birthday. The shot gave him a 74 to beat his age. He’s done that over 100 times.

“That’s what was so exciting when I found out I’d holed it and it let me beat my age,” Schuler said. “It was fun to do it in the city tournament.”

Schuler has overcome health problems in recent years to keep playing. He wants to be back next year, taking on the young guys and maybe playing again with the leaders on the final day.

“They hit it so far,” he said. “But I beat two of the three of them. I can’t complain about that.”