Matias Dominguez of Chile has won the inaugural Latin America Amateur Championship at Pilar Golf, Buenos Aires by a single shot from Alejandro Tosti of Argentina. Dominguez will now play in the U.S. Masters Tournament this April.

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Matias Dominguez of Chile has won the inaugural Latin America Amateur Championship at Pilar Golf, Buenos Aires by a single shot from Alejandro Tosti of Argentina. Dominguez will now play in the U.S. Masters Tournament this April.

“I can’t believe it,” said a shell-shocked Dominguez. “This is a dream come true and I just don’t have enough words to say how amazing this is.”

Dominguez took a one-stroke lead over home favourite Tosti into the final round and that was how it finished after both men fired one-under-par closing rounds of 71. But it wasn’t as straightforward as it might seem on paper.

After a loose drive, Dominguez bogeyed the opening hole to immediately drop back into a tie for the lead. He reclaimed his one-shot advantage with a birdie at the 4th hole and kept the ship steady with pars at the 5th and the 6th. Then, half way down the par-5 7th the hooter sounded, calling players off the course because of approaching electrical activity.

The final round was delayed for almost four hours because of the thunderstorms, before resuming at 3.45 pm local time. Dominguez returned from the break firing on all cylinders making birdies at the 7th and 8th holes to pull three shots clear.

Tosti reduced the deficit to two shots when he drove the green on the par-4 15th and two-putted for birdie. It was a brave shot as the drive had to carry 290 yards over the water to reach the putting surface.

The Argentinian had a chance to level things on the 16th. He fired in a superb approach to within just a few feet of the cup and, when Dominguez missed a par-effort, Tosti had a putt to tie the lead. But the nerves got to him and he pulled the ball slightly, it caught the left edge and lipped out.

More putting trouble on the 17th led to a bogey for Tosti and that gave Dominguez a two-stroke lead on the final hole. He needed the cushion as he was unable to get up-and-down from off the green. But a bogey was enough and Dominguez was the inaugural champion.

“On that last short putt I had, I was shaking so much,” he said. “I was trying not to think about what was on the line so I was singing a song in my head to try and get the thoughts out. Somehow it went in.”

As the winner of this tournament Dominguez will receive an invitation to the 2015 U.S. Masters. The 22-year-old Texas Tech Senior also earns a place in Final Stage Qualifying for the Open Championship, an exemption to the Amateur Championship and a place in the U.S. Amateur Championship.

As runner-up Tosti has a place in Final Stage Qualifying for The Open Championship and an exemption to the Amateur Championship, plus a place in Sectional Qualifying for the U.S. Open.

Latin America Amateur Championship – Final Scores
Pilar Golf, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Par 72, 7,255 yards

1    Matias Dominguez (Chi)        72    65    69    71    277
2    Alejandro Tosti (Arg)        69    70    68    71    278
T3    Alvaro Ortiz (Mex)            68    73    71    67    279
T3    Andre Tourinho (Bra)        70    66    75    68    279
T5    Santiago Gomez (Col)        69    75    70    68    282
T5    Guillermo Pereira (Chi)        71    70    72    69    282
7    Joaquin Bonjour (Arg)        69    68    73    74    284
T8    Jose Louis Montano (Bol)    71    73    69    72    285
T8    Juan Sebastian Munoz (Col)    69    70    71    75    285
10    Jorge Garcia (Ven)        71    75    70    70    286