Gow Grabs Title in Athens

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Nationwide TourATHENS, Ga. -- Paul Gow posted a 3-under 69 Sunday to cruise to a three-stroke win at the inaugural Athens Regional Foundation Classic. Gow completed his third Nationwide Tour win at 21-under-par 267.
 
'When you haven't won in a while, it makes it nice to get it done again,' said Gow, who picked up $90,000 for the win -- his first since the 2000 Hershey Open. 'That's why you're here, to try and hone your game to get ready for the PGA TOUR.'
 
Craig Lile, who shared the lead with Gow after three rounds, only managed an even-par 72 to end at minus-18. Zoran Zorkic and Tom Gillis each shot 69 in the final round to share third place at 16-under-par 272.
 
Jim Rutledge fired a 6-under 66 to climb into a tie for fifth at 14-under- par 274. He ended alongside Keoke Cotner (67), Fran Quinn (70), Peter Tomasulo (69) and Justin Bolli (71).
 
Gow opened with five straight pars at Jennings Mill Country Club to maintain a piece of the lead. He finally got on the board with a 5-foot birdie putt on the par-4 sixth.
 
The Australian strung together four more pars in a row. Gow chipped in for birdie on the par-4 11th to get to minus-20.
 
Gow birdied the par-5 14th to move to 21 under. He cruised in with four consecutive pars to earn the win and close one of three bogey-free rounds.
 
'Its pretty special. Athens is a great town to win in,' Gow said. 'There's is no chance I would have won if Tripp (Isenhour) hadn't given a putting tip earlier this week.'
 
Lile dropped a stroke with a bogey on the fourth. He bounced right back with a birdie on the next, though. After four straight pars, Lile faltered to another bogey on the par-4 10th.
 
The South African was unable to make a charge as he parred his next seven holes. Lile got back to even par for his round with a birdie at the last.
 
'For the one to go in on the last hole was nice,' Lile stated. 'Second is better than third, but I'd like to have given Paul a better run.'
 
Gillis had made the big run on Sunday. He made the turn at 2 under before catching fire around the turn. The Michigan native birdied four of the first five holes on the back nine to get to 19 under and within two of Gow.
 
However, Gillis bogeyed the 16th and double-bogeyed the last to end five back in a tie for third.
 
Glen Hnatiuk closed with a 6-under 66. He finished in 10th alongside John Merrick, Ken Duke, Jeff Hart and Kevin Johnson at 13-under-par 275.
 
Related Links:
  • Leaderboard - The Athens Regional Foundation Classic
  • Full Coverage - The Athens Regional Foundation Classic