A few years ago Billy Wingerd and Rusty McGready heard about a golf tournament in Pennsylvania while playing with a couple of older friends. Learning of what was called the Grandview 4-Ball Tournament raised the curiosity of the two friends who reside just outside of Baltimore.
It didn’t take long for Wingerd and McGready to make their presence felt as the pair claimed the Championship Flight titles in both 2013 and 2015.
Being that the 2017 edition was another odd-numbered year, the rest of the field of 48 teams of golfers certainly felt that anything but another title by the Maryland guys would be an upset.
Unfortunately for those hoping for an upset, it was not to be. The Maryland duo, who qualified first after shooting a 65 on Friday, crushed the competition during Sunday’s semifinals and finals matches to claim their third crown over the past five years in the newly titled Bob Little Match Play Championship.
While Wingerd and McGready were never seriously challenged on Sunday, they did have to survive a scare in the quarterfinals on Saturday. Taking on Avery Jones and Eric Fidler, the eventual champions appeared to be in serious trouble from the beginning.
“We were losing the whole match,” Wingerd said. “And we’re heading to the 17th down one with two to play but we went birdie, birdie the last two holes to win.”
After resting the remainder of the night, the pair played almost perfect golf on Sunday. They cruised past Steve Crain and Dan Ebner, 7&6, before defeating Chris Mescan and Jason Metzger, 6&4, in the final.
Even their mistakes turned out to be only minor bumps in the road. McGready started off the championship match by hitting his drive under a tree. Typically that would be a sign of poor things to come, but the Maryland standout chipped it out of harms way before making a long birdie putt. It was just that kind of a day.
“We play this golf course a lot every year,” McGready said. “And we make a lot of birdies.”
Little was on hand along with former club owner Don Barton and new owners Steve Chronister and Greg Bower to present Wingerd and McGready their prizes. Those prizes included $750 to each player as well as a free membership to Grandview for the rest of 2017.
“That’s a good addition for sure,” Wingerd said. “We’ll definitely use that.”
Mescan and Metzger were also given free memberships for the rest of the year after finishing second.
Bob Ruby and Don Dimoff won the First Flight championship, while Todd Waltimyer and Randy Grimm claimed the Second Flight title. Brett Berkheimer and Travis Hoffman won the Championship Flight consolation, Kory Trout and Jim Innerst took the First Flight consolation and Bob Lentz and Jeff Rhyne won the Second Flight consolation.
— Reach Ryan Vandersloot at email@example.com