E.A. Sports Today

Total domination

LeCroy, Harper blow away SKCC field; set records for all-time scoring (51-under-par), best-ball round (15 under) and margin of victory (13)

Jacob LeCroy high-fives partner Jacob Harper after they completed a wire-to-wire win in the Sunny King Classic. On the cover, they slap some skin after LeCroy’s eagle on 11 broke the tournament scoring record. (Photo by Brad Young)

Jacob Harper-Jacob Lecroy 163 (-51)
Logan Archer-Randy Archer 176 (-38)
Cory Etter-Caleb Bowen 177  (-37)
Cody Robinson-Barrett Waters 177 (-37)
Gary Wigington-Ty Cole 178 (-36)
Jeremy McGatha-Brennan Clay 179 (-35)

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

It’s going to take a record number of superlatives to describe this record setting Sunday in the Sunny King Charity Classic.

Jacob LeCroy and Jacob Harper, his hand-picked partner designed to dethrone the dominant three-time past champions, obliterated the tournament record book in winning the 41st SKCC Sunday at Anniston Country Club.

Jacob Harper (L) and Randy Archer share a laugh during the heat of competition Sunday. (Photo by Brad Young)

The short version is they blew away the all-time scoring record and set the best-ball round scoring. They were 51-under-par 163 for the 54-hole tournament, 15-under 55 for the final round and won by 13 shots – another record – over runnerups Randy and Logan Archer, whose 38-under 176 total would have won every Sunny King title but two before 2015.
“That’s the best I’ve ever seen in a four-ball period, in anything I’ve ever played in,” Harper said. 
“We got run over,” said Logan Archer, whose father-son team started the day four shots back.

The effort was so complete the champions failed to birdie or eagle only eight holes in the entire tournament – two at Silver Lakes (Mindbreaker 2, Heartbreaker 9); two at Cider Ridge (Nos. 3 and 4); and four Sunday at Anniston Country Club (2, 4, 6 and 18). They counted no bogeys.

The old all-time scoring record was 43-under and the old best-ball record 13-under, both held by Ty Cole and Gary Wigington, the team LeCroy and Harper were specifically built to deny an unprecendent fourth straight victory. The champions set or tied tournament scoring records all three days – 20-under in the scramble at Silver Lakes, 16-under in the scamble at Cider Ridge and 15-under Sunday.

“We just got out there and golfed it,” LeCroy said. “We made a lot of putts, that was the main thing.”

Players in the field used terms like amazing, astounding, incredible, unbelievable and never to be broken to describe it.
“That’s crazy good,” Wigington said. “That’s like going from the amateurs to the pros; they’re just in another league shooting those kinds of numbers. I thought our 43 would hang there for a while, but that 51 I don’t see that’ll ever get beat.”

“We do not have that gear,” said Caleb Bowen, who partnered with Cory Etter to share third place with Georgia mini-tour pros Barrett Waters and Cody Robinson. “They made it look easy.”

It started with LeCroy making a 40-foot birdie putt on the first hole to free up Harper for his short one and they never stopped. They needed only 7-under to tie the scoring record and had that after the 10th hole. They went to a once-unheard-of 45-under on LeCroy’s eagle on 11 before a 29-minute weather delay that did nothing to slow their momentum. They hit 50-under on LeCroy’s birdie putt on 16 – their 52nd hole – in front of a massive gallery.

“We talked about the record but we never talked about 50 until LeCroy made it on 16,” Harper said. “I mean, 50 doesn’t even sound feasible when you start. It still sounds funny when you say it.”

Cory Etter (L) and Caleb Bowen line up a putt on the 14th green as they challenged the Archers for second place. They finished in a tie for third. (Photo by Brad Young)

The long-hitting left-handed Harper, the 2018 Alabama Open champion and aspiring PGA Tour pro from Beulah, shot golf’s magic number 59 on his own ball; it would’ve eclipsed the course record had he not used a couple mulligans. He’s shot 59 four times in his career and 58 once. LeCroy, a recently graduated Donoho senior heading to play golf at South Alabama, shot 62 on his ball.
“I told you yesterday if we came out here and we shot 63, both of us had to do it, we’d have a chance at it, but then we’ve got to birdie different holes,” LeCroy said.

They both had their own side to brag about. Harper shot 28 on the front nine. LeCroy shot 29 on the back with a three-putt bogey on his last hole; he played the first five holes on that side in 6-under and had gotten it to 8-under there after almost making eagle on 17.
“The momentum was my way and when he makes the one on 10 he said the hole looked like it was twice the size that it should be,” Harper said. “He said the hole looked huge and he felt like he could make everything he stood over and he damn sure did. From 11, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17 he made everything he stood over.”

Randy Archer makes a long ‘sandy’ throw from the fairway bunker on No. 3 during Sunday’s round at Anniston Country Club. (Photo by Brad Young).

To see a gallery of Brad Young photos from the final round click here: Bradleyphotography.us

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