Tewell Wins with Birdie at the Last

By Sports NetworkAugust 22, 2004, 4:00 pm
2004 Greater Hickory Classic at Rock BarnCONOVER, N.C. -- Doug Tewell birdied the last to close a round of 8-under 64 Sunday and win the Greater Hickory Classic by one stroke over Bruce Fleisher. Tewell finished the event at 14-under-par 202.
 
'This one feels so sweet,' said Tewell, who earned $240,000 for the win. 'It's just nice to get back in that winner's circle.'
 
Fleisher, who owns a stellar record when leading after the second round, also birdied the last to end at 13-under-par 203. He posted a final-round 68.
 
Tewell got off to a hot start when he birdied the first. He came right back with a birdie at the second as he holed out from a greenside bunker. Tewell also birdied the third from 10 feet out at Rock Barn Golf Club and Spa to quickly jump to minus-9.
 
The 54-year-old converted his fourth birdie at the par-5 seventh. After dropping in an 11-foot birdie try at the 10th, Tewell sank a 7-foot birdie putt at the 11th to take the lead from Fleisher, who bogeyed the same hole.
 
Tewell ran off four straight pars, while Fleisher joined him in the lead at minus-12 with a 6-foot birdie putt at the 13th. Fleisher then dropped one shot back at the par-3 15th.
 
Fleisher's tee shot at the par-3came up short of the green and plugged in a bunker. He blasted out, but his ball got caught up in the rough. He managed to get up-and-down for bogey from there to slip to 11 under.
 
Tewell and Fleisher both dropped their second shots within 5 feet at the par-4 16th. They both converted their birdie putts as Tewell remained one ahead of his playing partner. Tewell made a difficult up-and-down par at No. 17, while Fleisher two-putted for his par.
 
At the last, Tewell's second shot to the par-5 found a greenside bunker. Fleisher knocked a 3-wood onto the putting surface to set up an eagle attempt.
 
Tewell blasted his third shot 12 feet past the hole. Fleisher's eagle attempt narrowly missed the cup and he tapped in for birdie to join Tewell at minus-13. Tewell then drained his birdie putt for his eighth Champions Tour crown.
 
'Bruce and I are such good friends,' Tewell said. 'I knew it was going to be a great shoot out after the first three holes where we kind of went back-and-forth. He just gave me that little opening on the par-3 15th.'
 
Tewell played the event with a new putter that he received from fellow Champions Tour player Walter Hall. It worked well for him as he only needed 22 putts to complete the final round. He also played the entire 54 holes without a bogey.
 
'No, Walter is not getting that putter back, but I will give him one dollar for it,' joked Tewell, who became the first Champions Tour player to win without making a bogey since Morris Hatalsky won the 2003 Columbus Southern Open. 'I just putted great this week. I've been working so hard on my game and I knew if I could start making some putts that things had to turn around. I've been hitting the ball too good.'
 
Fleisher opened with birdies at the second and fourth to move to minus-11. He played even par over his next four holes before a birdie at the ninth got him to 12 under. It was his bogey at the 15th that cost him the tournament though.
 
'Doug played very well and he had to,' said Fleisher. 'I had a chance, but he got it up-and-down at 17 and 18. When you shoot 64 you're supposed to win. It was his day.'
 
Hatalsky posted rounds of 67-66 over the weekend to move into third place at 10-under-par 206. Jerry Pate closed with a 68 to finish one shot behind him at minus-9.
 
Bobby Wadkins and Joe Inman each closed with rounds of 4-under 68 to share fifth place at 8-under-par 208. Larry Nelson and Eduardo Romero, who was making his Champions Tour debut on American soil, were one stroke further back at minus-7.
 
Mark Lye, the first-round leader, shot even-par 72 over each of the final two rounds to finish at 6-under-par 210 in ninth place for his first top-10 finish on the Champions Tour.
 
Craig Stadler, the 2003 champion, shared 25th place at 1-under-par 215 after a closing 71.
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - Greater Hickory Classic
  • TGC Airtimes
  • Full Coverage - Greater Hickory Classic
  • Getty Images

    Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

    By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

    One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

    Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

    "I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

    Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

    "I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

    Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

    "Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

    Getty Images

    Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

    Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

    Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

    “I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

    The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

    “I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

    This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

    The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

    Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

    The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


    A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

    And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

    The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


    Masters victory


    Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

    Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

    Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


    Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


    Green jacket tour

    Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

    Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

    Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


    Man of the people


    Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

    Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

    Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


    Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


    Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


    Growing family

    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

    Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


    Departure from TaylorMade


    Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


    Squashed beef with Paddy

    Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

    Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


    Victory at Valderrama


    Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

    Getty Images

    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm