E.A. Sports Today

Scramblin’ man

Scrambling skills, borrowed putter help Chandler win Oxford City Championship; includes full scores, County Tour points standings

Ty Cole coaxes a putt toward the 11th hole during Sunday's final round of the Oxford City Championship, then reacts as it stops on the edge.

Ty Cole coaxes a putt toward the 11th hole during Sunday’s final round of the Oxford City Championship, then reacts as it stops on the edge.

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

OXFORD – When you hit a golf ball as long as Dalton Chandler has been known to do you’d better be comfortable playing out of some curious places. The ball may go far, but it won’t always go straight, so you’d better be able to get up and down.

Chandler’s scrambling skills were put to the test on the closing holes of the Oxford City Championship Sunday and he rose to the occasion. He made two pars and two birdies on four of the final five holes at Cider Ridge Golf Club to give him a chance and ultimately won one of the more intriguing tournaments ever on the Calhoun County Golf Tour a 12-foot birdie putt on 18.

Chandler shot 2-under-par 70 for a two-day total 140 that was one shot better than former Anniston CC pro Kevin Daugherty. Defending champion Ty Cole finished third at 142.

Chandler won despite starting his round with three bogeys in his first four holes. Daugherty pulled into contention with a back-nine 32 that featured five birdies. Cole was tied for the lead at the turn. At least six players were within a shot of the lead on the back nine.

Seve Ballesteros was legendary for his creativity to get out dicey spots and Chandler is getting that way. He was second in scrambling on the Calhoun County Tour last year, getting up and down 60 percent of the time.

Some of his biggest shots of the tournament came late on Sunday after he put his ball in some difficult spots. He birdied the par-5 15th after his second shot bounced him into an awkward stance on the hill behind the green; he putted it onto the green. He parred 16 after his drive rolled off the fairway into a hanging lie in the left hazard. And he made his winning birdie on 18 after his second shot trundled halfway down the hill left of the green and into a thick grassy lie.

“I’m in the stuff a lot,” he said. “I hit driver a long ways and when you hit it a long ways you’re going to hit it left and right. I guess you could say I’m comfortable in it. A lot of times I make birdies out of those spots.

“I am getting better making my squares smaller. I made four bogeys all weekend. I’m happier with that than I am the birdies.”

Two clubs played key roles in his second Calhoun County Tour victory. “Three-iron was my friend today,” he said. He hit the club he can carry 260-275 yards on eight of the 10 par-4s Sunday and found seven of those fairways.

And the putter he used was a model he literally picked up from Kyle Daugherty, the nephew of the tournament runner-up. He took it on Thursday, played with it in a practice round Friday and put it in play on the weekend.

He had 29 putts on Sunday, no three-putts, five birdies and seven one-putts.

“I stole it out of the truck, played with it Friday and in the tournament and apparently it works,” Chandler said.

Kyle Daugherty said the putter, a center-shafted Odyssey White-Hot No. 2, was one he had for a while and only recently got it back. He explained that several years ago it needed a new Super-Stroke grip. He gave it to Janson Wilborn handle and didn’t see it again until the Indian Oaks Championship a couple weeks ago. He still hasn’t played with it since giving it up for the repair.

Kevin Daugherty, looking for his first amateur title in 23 years, birdied 10, 12 and 14 to join a three-way tie for the lead at 2-under. He gave a shot back on 16, then birdied 17 and 18 to force Chandler and Cole to make birdies coming home if they wanted to win.

Chandler had a real good chance on the par-3 17th, but missed a four-footer; had he made it, he said, he would’ve gone with that 3-iron off the 18th tee. Cole was in a good position off the tee on 16, but hit his second shot over the green, chipped short and made bogey. His tee shot on 17 was far left of the pin and he three-putted for bogey.

Daugherty’s strong back nine came after a tough finish to the front. He was even-par through seven holes, then made a bad putt on 8 that led to a bogey and a bad swing on 9 that led to a double. He got it going again but hitting it to within a foot on 10.

“I felt like I did pretty good just keeping my mind on what I was doing and not worrying about what anybody else was doing,” he said. “I was just trying to make birdies. I knew once I turned in 3-over I had to make birdies.”

First-round co-leader Brad Crowe was tied for the lead with Cole at the turn at 3-under, but he Crowe faded with four straight bogeys and a double to open the back. Erich Egui, the other first-round co-leader, never got on track in the final group; he was 6-over after four holes.

Andrew Brooks, playing with Daugherty one group ahead of the leaders, got within a shot of the lead with his second eagle of the round at 15, but he doubled the next hole and lost contact with the frontrunners.

Enjoy this small gallery of swings (click to enlarge). Among the players included are first-round co-leader Erich Egui, runner-up Kevin Daugherty, Janson Wilborn and Andrew Brooks. On the cover, Dalton Chandler sinks the 12-foot birdie putt on 18 that won the Oxford City Championship. (All photos except the cover by B.J. Franklin/Gung Ho Photos)


At Cider Ridge GC

Final results

Championship flight
Dalton Chandler 70-70—140
Kevin Daugherty 70-71—141
Ty Cole 70-72—142
Andrew Brooks 71-74—145
Gary Wigington 71-74—145
Jeremy McGatha 72-74—146
Brad Crowe 69-79—148
Erich Egui 69-81—150
Chad Calvert 74-77—151
Cypress Hathorn 73-78—151
Caleb McKinney 72-81—153
Nicky Randriamanana 73-84—157
Craig Whatley II 72-86—158

First flight
Christopher Carlson 76-68—144
Jacob Lecroy 76-70—146
Janson Wilborn 75-73—148
David Lawrence 75-73—148
Billy Thompson 76-74—150
Matt Rogers 79-72—151
Drake Moseley 80-72—152
Lewis Lecroy 76-77—153
Dustin Travis 80-74—154
Caleb Bowen 76-79—155
Clay Calkins 76-79—155
Timmy Woodard 75-80—155
Scott Martin 76-81—157

Second flight
Chad Reavis 79-75—154
Lance Evans 77-77—154
Christopher Cox 82-74—156
Eric Lett 81-75—156
Tim Steward 82-75—157
Ott Chandler 77-80—157
Chip Howell 83-77—160
Chance Harris 77-83—160
Jeremy Willis 79-81—160
Jerry Kemp 80-81—161
Jonathan Nelson 80-81—161
Brandon Roberts 77-87—164
Cain Hollingsworth 79-86—165

Third flight
Richard Starling 88-73—161
John Dillingham 83-79—162
Daily Thomas 81-82—163
Dan Griffin 84-79—163
Will Turley 83-80—163
Kyle Daugherty 83-82—165
David Sanders 81-85—166
Scott Sikes 82-85—167
Maram Macham 86-81—167
Rick Riley 81-87—168
Mike Granato 82-91—173
John Tucker 83-WD

Fourth flight
Dan McClellan 85-81—166
Chase Hollingsworth 84-82—166
Ryan Huff 89-80—169
Lamar Ward 84-85—169
Jono Waugh 90-79—169
Frank Toland 87-84—171
Chase Thomas 88-84—172
Jared Waits 85-87—172
Tyler Baker 97-82—179
Luke Armstrong 84-96—180
Kelly Rogers 95-86—181
Bill Cooley 94-88—182
Kenny Wright 84-WD

Fifth flight
Mark Highland 93-89—182
John Lindsey 90-96—186
Casey Harmon 92-97—189
Phillip King 95-105—200

(Sunday’s round)

Player 443 454 435 36 443 445 435 36 72
D Chandler 544 544 334 36 443 444 434 34 70
Daugherty 433 455 447 39 342 435 524 32 71
Cole 433 553 435 35 443 544 544 37 72
Wigington 445 454 534 38 343 445 535 36 74
Brooks 442 565 523 36 454 443 635 38 74

Tournament winner Dalton Chandler admires the borrowed putter that pulled him through in the Oxford City Championship.

Tournament winner Dalton Chandler admires the borrowed putter that pulled him through in the Oxford City Championship.

Points Standings
(Wins in parenthesis)

Dalton Chandler (1) 477.5
Chad Calvert (1) 475
Gary Wigington 445
Ty Cole 402.5
Caleb McKinney 395
Andrew Brooks 355
Jeremy McGatha 352.5
Lance Evans 317.5
Matt Rogers 297.5
Billy Thompson 295
Clay Calkins 285
Lewis Lecroy 280
Ott Chandler 260
David Lawrence 252.5
Jacob Lecroy 250
Kevin Daugherty 250
Janson Wilborn 247.5
Scott Martin 232.5
Caleb Bowen 225
Brandon Roberts 215
Jonathan Pate 200
Kyle Daugherty 200
Dan Griffin 195
Chad Reavis 195
Adrian Geeting 187.5
Brad Crowe 180
Daily Thomas 162.5
Kenny Wright 155
Dustin Travis 130
Nick Pollard 125
Casey Harmon 120
Kelly Rogers 120
Jimbo Phillips 115
Jeremy Willis 97.5
Chip Howell 97.5
Austin Minter 75
Brad Hardin 75
Jono Waugh 70
Jeff Borrelli 50

Gary Wigington pitches a ball onto the green Sunday. (Photo by B.J. Franklin/GungHo Photos)

Gary Wigington pitches a ball onto the green Sunday. (Photo by B.J. Franklin/GungHo Photos)

You must be logged in to post a comment Login