Two veteran teams hit it close enough to the hole and bounced in enough putts to tie for the win at the Eagle Creek 6-Man Scramble in Norwalk on Sunday.
The 6-man teams of pro Eric Frischette and of captain Jason Kiley (teammates listed below) overcame the chilly day and difficult course conditions to claim a tie for the top spot at 18-under par.
Finishing in second place alone at 17-under par was the Mike Stone team.
The Stone team also grabbed one of two skins made on the day with a chip-in eagle at the 324-yard par-4 17th. The other skin belonged to the Tim Ailes team with Ailes’ hole-in-one at the 174 yard par-3 6th, the loudest roar of the day on the golf course.
Results and an “editorial comment” follow.
RESULTS: 2009 SPRING 6-MAN SCRAMBLE AT EAGLE CREEK
Eagle Creek GC, Norwalk, Ohio – Par 72, 6319 yards
T1. Eric Frischette, Matt Creech, Anthony Savage, Todd Cravens, Mike Doan, Kenny Cook -18 :: $3,000
T1. Jason Kiley, Greg Smith, Ryan Dials, Toby McMillen, Doug Kelly, Jake Beard -18 :: $3,000
3. Mike Stone, Tim Condon, Dave Rosinski, Adam Crisp, Ryan Fussell, Chris Fussell -17 :: $1,200
SKINS: ($2,000 each)
Tim Ailes, Jason Leeds, John Zitkovic, Jeff Godzak, Kyle Brossia, Doug Mauch
Mike Stone, Tim Condon, Dave Rosinski, Adam Crisp, Ryan Fussell, Chris Fussell
. . . .
[*Editorial Comment: The greens at Eagle Creek still showed significant aeration damage and were heavily top-dressed. The putting surfaces were slow, bumpy, inconsistent and clearly not ready for tournament play. Pro Dave Weisenberger apologized for the bumpy greens at the awards ceremony and cited the recent weather for their condition. While the weather indeed may be a factor, the bigger factor is agronomic preparation: a few sessions with a greens roller, a cutting, and another brushing of the top-dressing were necessary. If a golf course is going to promote a tournament attracting 180 players for a 7-hour round and make $6,800 from that event, the staff should make the extra effort required to ready the golf course for competition. As players, we ask that the extra effort be made next spring.]
Editorial Follow-Up Note – 4/21/09: Pro Dave Weisenberger called to discuss the circumstances of the greens conditions outlined above. A March aerification was Eagle Creek’s first attempt at trying the process so early in the season, and the lack of any warm weather since that aerification was cited as the reason the greens did not respond. Dave stated that they rolled and cut the greens twice per week since aerifying, and that they made every possible effort to ready the golf course for the tournament, including additional preparations the night before. He said that when they scheduled the March aerification, they believed that four weeks in between the work and the scramble would be enough time to heal. He said that the conditions were a result of no growth coupled with trying a new aerification schedule that simply didn’t work out as planned. Most importantly, he made a point of disputing my statement above, saying that the results were not a lack of effort on the part of the staff but rather a change in scheduling that did not work out as hoped. I told Dave that the only reason for my editorial was to make sure that golf courses that promote competitive tournaments treat those events with full preparation and consideration for the field, and not just another day of tee times or a revenue generator. Dave assured me that the date for either the spring scramble or the spring aerification would be different for 2010, that the fall scramble would have perfect greens because aerification is scheduled after that event, and that the staff of Eagle Creek did all they could to provide tournament conditions and a fair value to the players in advance of this tournament.
— Allen Freeman