SCARBOROUGH, N.Y. – Call it a command performance.
The early morning silence at Sleepy Hollow Country Club was briefly interrupted Friday when Stewart Hagestad barked encouragement to a well-struck tee ball.
“Go,” he said.
The ball narrowly cleared the top edge of a menacing bunker protecting the par-3 third.
“Sit,” he said.
The ball quickly settled four feet from the hole.
It’s been another memorable week for Hagestad, who posted a 3-and-2 victory over Evan Beck in the 42nd U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship final. There were some dominant stretches, but more impressive were the singular winning shots he manufactured each time pressure was applied.
“I played really well this week,” said the 32-year-old California native who currently resides in the West Village and works in Manhattan. “I won’t sugar coat it, I played really well. I knew that I would have to bring it for certain matches, and I did. I knew the semifinal and the final would be the most emotional and challenging stretches for me, so to get through like this, I’m speechless.”
Nathan Smith holds the record with four U.S. Mid-Am wins, but Hagestad is now just one title behind. The previous wins came in 2016 and 2021.
There aren’t many players who have won the same USGA championship at least three times. Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan and Bob Jones are some of the most prominent names on that short list.
Hagestad is living every golfer’s dream this month.
The financial analyst at BDT & MSD Partners opened the month in Scotland, winning another Walker Cup at St. Andrew’s. He went 2-1 there. Following a couple of days in the office, the former MGA Player of the Year was in Westchester, prepping for the U.S. Mid-Am at Sleepy Hollow and Fenway.
“When I look back I’m sure I’ll be able to contextualize it a little better,” Hagestad said. “I’ve been pretty hyper-focused on this week and while I was at St. Andrew’s I was hyper-focused on that week. I think it’ll be one of those things where I look back in a few weeks, a month, and go, ‘That really happened.’ It’s been pretty cool, pretty cool.”
With his third U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship win, Stewart Hagestad joined the likes of Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus, Ben Hogan and Bobby Jones on the list of…