E.A. Sports Today

Twig awaits foe in final

Top-seeded Gary Wigington opened an early lead and never looked back, defeating Jaylon Ellison 2 & 1

By East Alabama Sports Today

Top-seeded Gary Wigington opened an early lead and never looked back, defeating Jaylon Ellison 2 & 1 Tuesday to set one half of the Calhoun County Match Play Championship final.

The County Player of the Year now awaits the winner between Jeremy McGatha and Andrew Brooks for the title. McGatha and Brooks attempted to play Monday but were thwarted by the weather.

“It was nothing real special; I just got an early lead and kind of held on,” Wigington said. “I knew it was going to be a tough match, especially knowing how well he played over the weekend (finishing T-4 in the Emerald Coast Tour Championship).”

Ellison’s putter let him down again. He finished 26th or worse in all three putting categories on the Calhoun County Tour this season and three-putted each of his first three holes Tuesday.

Wigington led 3-up at the turn and had a 4-up lead through 11 holes. Ellison cut two holes off his deficit by chipping in for birdie on 12 and beating Wigington’s bogey on 13, but could get no closer.

Ellison called 14 the turning point when he bogeyed despite having 195 yards to the par-5 hole on his second shot. Wigington birdied the hole, but Ellison could have kept the pressure on with a better result.

“My putter has let me down all year,” Ellison said. “I hit the ball pretty well and it’s a frustrating game to give shots away through putting. It has just been unacceptable this year the way I putted.

”I don’t think Gary or I brought our best game to the golf course today. I didn’t play good enough to win and didn’t deserve to win.”

Wigington won the Match Play title in 2012. If he were to win again, it would be his third straight victory in a County Tour event this season, following the Pine Hill Invitational and County Championship. It would be his ninth Tour victory, tying Ellison for the all-time lead.

No one has won more than one Match Play title since the event started in 2010.

“It would be a great ending to a real good year if I were able to do it,” he said. “But I’ve gotta play better than I did today.”

Calhoun County Match Play Championship
(All matches at Cane Creek Golf Course)

First-round matches
Buddy Moore Bracket

No. 1 Gary Wigington def. No. 16 Jeff Borrelli, 6 & 5
No. 8 Matt Rogers def. No. 9 Scott Martin, 2 & 1
No. 13 Billy Thompson def. No. 4 Grant Hockman, 2 & 1
No. 5 Jaylon Ellison def. No. 12 Lance Evans, 2 & 1

Chris Banister Bracket
No. 15 Clay Calkins def. No. 2 Ty Cole, walkover
No. 7 Adrian Geeting vs. No. 10 Andrew Brooks, 1 up
No. 3 Jeremy McGatha def. No. 14 Nick Pollard, 5 & 4
No. 11 Daniel Black def. No. 6 Ott Chandler, 19 holes

Second-round matches
Wigington def. Rogers, 3 & 1
Ellison def. Thompson, 3 & 2
Brooks def. Calkins, 2 up
McGatha vs. Black, 6 & 5

Semifinal matches
Wigington def. Ellison, 2 & 1
Brooks vs. McGatha

Championship match
Wigington vs. Brooks-McGatha winner

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