Vince Batten and Brad Lebo Capture the
2005 PPA North Carolina Team Championship
10 September 2005 - High Point, NC - Seven two-player teams contested the North Carolina PPA Teams Championship over the course of two separate 54-hole tour events held consecutively on the same day on course # 2 in High Point, NC. Each team totaled the better of each of six nine-hole scores from the day's morning event, the Barbara Nance Memorial, and added that score to the combined total scores of the two team members in the day's afternoon event, the Wayne Hancock Memorial. The resulting 162-hole score gave each team its final total.
Brad Lebo (left) and Vince Batten (right)
2005 PPA North Carolina State Team Champions
Vince Batten and Brad Lebo entered the afternoon tournament at 80, trailing morning leaders Randal Smith and Junior Sigmon by a stroke. As the morning leaders faded, Batten and Lebo held off furious charges by the teams of Gary English/Greg Ward and Michael Hitt/Darrell Britt. Batten and Lebo posted a 162-hole total of 246 to score a two-stroke victory over runners-up English and Ward. Hitt and Britt finished alone in third position at 251.
Action began with defending champions Rick Baird and Andy Coradini soaring into co-leadership with the Smith/Sigmon team at 26. Batten and Lebo lurked a stroke behind in third position at 27.
A second-round 25 moved Smith and Sigmon into sole possession of the 36-hole lead at 51. The teams of Baird/Coradini and Batten/Lebo hovered two strokes behind in a tie for second place at 53.
Smith and Sigmon continued their strong morning play in the third round, taking the 54-hole lead at 79. Batten and Lebo finished the morning portion of the tournament one stroke behind at 80. Ward and English moved into third position at 82.
After completion of the first round of the afternoon tournament, Batten and Lebo surged into the 90-hole lead at 133. English and Ward stood three strokes behind the leaders at 136. Hitt and Britt charged into third position with a combined fourth-round score of 50 and held third place alone at 139.
Batten and Lebo increased their lead to five strokes after the fifth round of play, posting a 126-hole total of 191. Despite a combined fifth-round score of 60, English and Ward clung to second place at 196. The race for third place tightened considerably, as the teams of Hitt/Britt and Baird/Coradini were tied for third position at 199 and the remaining three squads were deadlocked a stroke further back at 200.
In the final round of play, the teams of English/Ward and Hitt/Britt made spirited clubhouse charges, with each team posting a combined sixth-round score of 52. Batten and Lebo made critical aces late in the final round to post a sixth-round combined score of 55 and a 162-hole total of 246 to edge out English and Ward by two strokes and earn their first North Carolina Teams Championship. The tournament marked the first time that the duo of Batten and Lebo ever had teamed together in a teams event. Hitt and Britt finished in third position at 251.
Frankie Peters (left) and Keith Waters (right)
2005 APA North Carolina State Team Champions
In the amateur division, the North Carolina Teams Championship was contested by seven amateur squads employing the same tournament format as used by the professional division. The team of High Point local players Frankie Peters and Keith Waters charged from behind in the final round to fire a 162-hole total of 251 and earn a five-stroke victory over the team of Chris Alley and Ricky D. Schults. The team of Mark Lawson and Caleb Kennedy finished in third position at 260.
Play commenced with team of Alley and Schults crafting a brilliant first-round 23 to seize a four-shot lead over three teams. The teams of Peters/Waters, Lawson/Kennedy, and Barry Moore/Dennis Biesma were in a second-place logjam at 27.
The torrid pace of Alley and Schults cooled in the second round and the scoring tightened as a result. After a second-round 30, Alley and Schults clung to a one-stroke 36-hole lead at 53. Alone in second place were Peters and Waters, who fired their second consecutive 27 for a 36-hole total of 54. Just another stroke behind in third position at 55 were the teams of Lawson/Kennedy and Chuck Nance/Adam Smith.
Peters and Waters wrestled the lead from Alley and Schults after completion of the morning event, posting at 54-hole total of 80. Alley and Schults stood alone in second place at 82. Lawson and Kennedy entered the afternoon portion of the event another stroke back in third position at 83.
Alley and Schults surged back into the lead after the fourth round of action, posting a fourth-round combined score of 56 for a 90-hole total of 138. The teams of Peters/Waters and Lawson/Kennedy shared second place at 141.
The leaders again reshuffled themselves in the fifth round of action. As Alley and Schults ballooned to a fifth-round combined score of 63, Lawson and Kennedy moved into the lead with a 126-hole total of 196. Peters and Waters lurked three strokes behind the leaders, in second place at 199. Alley and Schults entered the final round in third position, five strokes behind the leaders at 201.
Peters and Waters made an inspired clubhouse run in the final round, posting a final-round combined total of 52 for a 162-hole total of 251 and a convincing five-stroke victory over Alley and Schults, who finished alone in second position at 256. Lawson and Kennedy fired a disappointing sixth-round combined total of 64 to drop into third position at 260. Buried deep in the pack earlier in the tournament, the team of Jeff Carr and Larry Hoover made a valiant run at third place with a sixth-round combined total of 50, but fell two strokes short of that goal and settled for a fourth place finish at 262.
The North Carolina PPA Tour will return to action on Sunday, September 11 with the 2005 North Carolina PPA Match Play Championship. Play will begin on course # 2 in High Point, NC at 9:00 a.m. on that date.
Tournament scores from Rick Rybaczek and summary by Brad Lebo.