MODESTO -- As Modesto's Jeff Burda lined up a 25-foot birdie putt at the 17th Wednesday, he heard a smattering of cheering and applause about 350 yards away.
That sound was Casey Boyns' winning the California Golf Association Senior Amateur Championship.
Boyns, the popular Pebble Beach caddie, drained a sidewalk-slick 20-footer for birdie at Del Rio Country Club's 18th to clinch the title. The 56-year-old Boyns became only the second player to win both the State Amateur and State Senior Amateur titles.
The winner rallied from a four-stroke deficit via a closing 34, featuring birdies at the 15th and the 18th, on Del Rio's Bluff nine.
Burda, 59, placed fourth in his attempt for an unprecedented fourth Senior Amateur win. He won the event in 2008, '09 and '10.
After Boyns' left-to-right breaking putt dropped, Burda (72-72-77221) two-putted the final two greens for pars and finished only two strokes behind Boyns (75-73-71219).
"I hit the ball better today than the first two days. I hit a lot of really good shots and didn't get rewarded for them," Burda said. "I'm happy for Casey. That was a good win."
David Delich of Colorado Springs, Colo., and Jim Knoll of Sunnyvale shared second place one stroke behind the champion.
"Jim (Knoll) hit a bunker shot from the same line and almost sank it, so I saw it all," Boyns said in reference to the title-winning putt. "I thought, 'Be gentle with it, but hit it squarely.' It was right in the heart. You usually don't make those."
Del Rio, Burda's home club, betrayed the local favorite after he took a one-stroke lead going into the final round. He misread three short par putts on the front nine, but he recovered with a birdie at the short 11th and still led the tournament as he stood in the middle of the fairway at the par-4 12th.
Burda struck his 8-iron approach well, but he failed to clear the hazard only eight paces short of the flagstick. The resulting double bogey stalled his momentum.
"I had to take the water out of play, but if I landed it past pin-high, it would go over the green," Burda said. "A lot of good golfers have hit into the water there. Tough hole."
Boyns returns to caddie duties today at the Callaway Pebble Beach Invitational.
Turlock's Ken Webb (77-72-76 225), one of 37 players to make the cut from an original field of 108, tied for 10th.