Fanagan comes up shy in US Senior Amateur Final

Ronan MacNamara

Todd White, left, and Jody Fanagan hold the U.S. Senior Amateur trophy before the start of their final match of the 2023 U.S. Senior Amateur at Martis Camp Club in Truckee, Calif. on Thursday, Aug. 31, 2023. (Jeff Haynes/USGA)

Jody Fanagan revealed Pádraig Harrington texted him good luck before his US Senior Amateur Championship Final but he won’t be joining his former Walker Cup partner in next year’s Senior US Open after he lost the decider 4&3 to top seed Todd White.

Fanagan was the first international player to make the final in what was also his debut in the event but after a marathon semi-final that went into extra holes on Wednesday he was unable to produce his best stuff and was beaten by the strokeplay medalist.

White became the ninth medalist to win the Frederick L. Dold Trophy.


“I putted pretty well all week. I did three-putt once or maybe twice today. Pins were difficult. It’s hard. The pressure that Todd put you under, he played so well,” explained Fanagan.

“I struggled a little bit on the greens, but it wasn’t my day today, and he deserved it.”

The Milltown man was four-over after as many holes on the opening day of strokeplay qualifying but refused to book that early flight home and he almost went all the way.

“Yeah, you come over and you — I was 4-over after four holes in the stroke play and I was thinking I was going home early in the stroke play. It was a bit of a bonus to go this far. I wasn’t playing brilliantly this summer. But then you get the competitive edge and it comes out and you hole a few putts, and you make yourself hard to beat.

“Todd was good today, so I would have had to have been unbelievable today. He gave me nothing.”

Moments after closing out the match on the par-5 15th green, White fought through emotions to put this victory into perspective.

“At this point in time … words fail me,” said White, the 2023 South Carolina Amateur champion. “I sit here and I look at all the hard work that’s gone into it over the course of my life, and it’s just incredible validation of that work.

“Hopefully it’s something that I can take back with me into my career in the classroom and show the students that hard work does pay off, and nothing is given to you. You have to earn it. I feel like that’s what I’ve done here this week is I’ve earned it.”


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