Greg Ward Sweeps Opening Weekend on PPA South Carolina State Tour
28 March 2004 - Columbia, SC - For the first time since the 1997 season, one player has started the season with two straight wins in as many tournaments played on schedule. After winning in a grueling playoff on Saturday, Greg Ward narrowly averted aplayoff after a late final four-hole surge by Todd Fowler closed the gap to just a single stroke.
Ward would better his first round from the day before by one stroke with a 24, but it would not lead after the opening round. Jay Klapper fired a course-tying record of 23, set last season by Tommy Hutchinson (APA) in the 2003 Palmetto Classic, to grab the lead through the first 18. That round performed by Klapper was overshadowed in the second round as he fired a 31 to slip back to a three-way tie for second.
Ward would then respond by posting a 27 to grab the lead at 51 and would let the lead hang on. Ward fired a final round 28 to set the new three-round Columbia record with a score of 79. Fowler made a run to catch Ward, but missed hole 14 down the stretch that would clinch the win for the four-time South Carolina State Champion.
Ward would win Columbia to complete a season opening weekend sweep. This is the first time that a South Carolina player had opened the season with two consecutive victories since Bo Seiber opened the 1997 season with back-to-back wins at the North Charleston course.
Brian Hutchins would win his second APA tournament of the 2004 season, but would get his first on the South Carolina tour. Hutchins did what Saturday's winner Chris Hudson did to win and that was to open with a 25 and win from the start. Hutchins won by five shots over Ricky D. Schults and posted a score of 79. Schults was second at 84, while Russell Taylor came in third at 87.
Fowler's 80 was good enough to claim second by himself. Klapper finished tied with Rick Baird at 81, while a trio of players were tied for third at 85, including Andy Coradini, Mike Flavin, and Tony Varnadore. There were nine cash spots available again in the Pro Division and the score of 87 was good enough for a four-for-one split.
Fowler would get the second South Carolina State spot after Ward received on Saturday. Baird was the recipient of the two-day low medalist score. Ward got the first South Carolina issued World Match Play that was given to the weekend low score.
The South Carolina tour returns to action on the weekend of April 17th and 18th in Lumberton, North Carolina for a pair of events with the North Carolina tour. The weekend gets underway at 12:00 p.m. on the 17th and 10:00 a.m. on the 18th.
Tournament results provided by Tony Jackson and Opie Roberts.
Professional Division of Columbia, SC Event
(Columbia, SC - 28 March 2004)
|2||Todd Fowler||27||27||26||80||$ 80.00|
|3||Rick Baird||26||28||27||81||$ 60.00|
| ||Jay Klapper||23||31||27||81||$ 60.00|
|5||Andy Coradini||31||25||29||85||$ 45.00|
| ||Mike Flavin||25||31||29||85|| $ 45.00|
| ||Tony Varnadore||30||28||27||85||$ 45.00|
|8||Hank Mersereau||29||29||28||86||$ 35.00|
|9||Rick Culverhouse||29||28||30||87||$ 9.00|
| ||Bob Jackson||27||31||29||87||$ 9.00|
| ||Randy Orr||30||29||28||87||$ 9.00|
| ||Frank Warren||30||29||28||87||$ 9.00|
|13||Darrell Britt||29||30||29||88|| |
| ||Vance Randall||30||32||26||88|| |
| ||Allen Wall||26||30||30||88|| |
|16||Tony Jackson||28||32||30||90|| |
| ||Robert Johnson||30||33||27||90|| |
|18||Michael Hitt||35||27||30||92|| |
|19||Steve Lyon||32||32||32||96|| |
Amateur Division of Columbia, SC Event
(Columbia, SC - 28 March 2004)
|2||Ricky D. Schults||32||28||24||84||$ 10.00|
|3||Russell Taylor||31||30||26||87||$ 10.00|
|4||Chris Alley||27||31||33||91|| |
| ||Jeff Carr||28||30||33||91|| |
|6||Chris Hudson||28||31||33||92|| |
|7||Steve Helton||33||33||28||94|| |
| ||Larry Smith||35||31||28||94|| |
|9||Lynn Self||34||35||26||35|| |
|10||Todd Trent||33||31||33||97|| |
|11||Robin Trent||35||31||35||101|| |
|12||Linwood Moist||32||33||37||102|| |