Fleming edges Woodward for record-tying 18th section major

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Photo: Tim Fleming flanked by sponsors of the South Central Section PGA Professional Championship.

By Ken MacLeod

NORMAN – A curling 35-foot birdie putt that dropped from the back of the 16th green helped lift Tim Fleming to a one-shot victory over Tyler Woodward in the South Central Section PGA Professional Championship Tuesday at the renovated Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club.

Fleming, director of golf at Oklahoma City Golf & Country Club, shot a 1-under 71 in the final round of the previously 54-hole event shortened to 36 holes this year to encourage greater participation. Woodward, the host professional at Jimmie Austin, pulled within one with a birdie of his own on the 17th hole, but missed an uphill birdie putt of about 25 feet on the par-5 18th to force a tie.

It was the third victory in this event for Fleming, who also won in 2003 and 2012. It was also the 18th section major championship for the 53-year-old, who is now tied with Bob Ralston and Jim Woodward for most section victories all time.

The top five qualify for the PGA Professional Championship April 28 to May 1 at Belfair of Bluffton Golf Club in South Carolina. The top 20 finishers there will compete in the PGA Championship May 16-19. Fleming has qualified to compete in five PGA Championships previously and has made it to the PGA Professional Championship at least 18 times, he estimated.

Woodward made four birdies on the front nine and made the turn at 2-under and one shot ahead of Fleming. However he made bogey on the par-3 12th while Fleming rolled in a birdie putt for a two-shot swing. Both players made double bogey on the par-5 13th, but Fleming made two spectacular par saves on holes 14 and 17 to keep Woodward at bay. Woodward, the head pro at Jimmie Austin for the past six years, will be making his first appearance in the national event.

“Tim made some great putts and you have to give him credit,” Woodward said. “That putt on 16 was amazing and he made a great up-and-down on 17. I knew I had to birdie 18 to tie and gave it a chance.”

Fleming, a former Oklahoma State All-American, said he was impressed by all the changes and the conditions at Jimmie Austin, which reopened fully last year after a several-year renovation by architect Tripp Davis.

“The course, the practice facilities, the clubhouse, everything they’ve done here is really special,” Fleming said.

Also qualifying for the national event were Mark Fuller of Surrey Hills Country Club, who shot rounds of 72-73 and finished two shots behind Fleming, Cary Cozby of Southern Hills Country Club, who shot 75-71 to finish at 2 over and tied with Jarod Lundy of Winter Creek Golf Club in Blanchard, who shot 72-74. Alternates are Trent Rommann of Crestview Country Club in Wichita, Jeff Combe of Tulsa Country Club, Malachi Murphy of Winter Creek and Brian Soerensen of Kickingbird Golf Course in Edmond.

Fleming, who was three over after his first two holes in Monday’s opening round, said the patience learned during his career helped him grind back into contention and eventually prevail.

“At 53, you do learn some patience,” he said. “Although with it only being 36 holes and that start, I couldn’t wait too long to get going.”

He made three birdies and no bogeys over the rest of the opening round to tie for the lead at even-par 72, then was one of only three golfers to break par with his closing 71, the other two being Cozby and Rommann.

Tim Fleming

South Central PGA Professional Championship Results

Jimmie Austin OU Golf Club

Par: 72 Distance: 6980

 

Qualifiers: 5  Alternates: 4

QUALIFIERS

1   Tim Fleming           Oklahoma City G&CC            72-71–143 -1

2   Tyler Woodward        Jimmie Austin Golf Club       72-72–144 E

3   Mark Fuller           Surrey Hills                  72-73–145 +1

T4  Cary Cozby            Southern Hills CC – Champ     75-71–146 +2

T4  Jarod Lundy           Winter Creek GC               74-72–146 +2

ALTERNATES – IN ORDER

6   Trent Rommann         Crestview CC                  76-71–147 +3

T7  Jeff Combe            Tulsa CC                      74-74–148 +4

T7  Malachi Murphy        Winter Creek GC               74-74–148 +4

T9  Brian Soerensen       Kickingbird GC                75-74–149 +5

DID NOT QUALIFY

T9  Art Romero            Texarkana CC                  75-74–149 +5

T9  Mark Ramer            Golf World Driving Range      74-75–149 +5

T9  Troy Hendricks        Auburn Hills Municipal        73-76–149 +5

T13 Brent Wilcoxen        South Lakes                   76-74–150 +6

T13 Kyle Emerson          Oklahoma City G&CC            78-72–150 +6

T13 Jim Young             River Oaks GC                 78-72–150 +6

T13 J.J. Belcoff          Forest Ridge                  76-74–150 +6

T13 Jon Burton            Hardscrabble CC               73-77–150 +6

T18 Shannon Friday        Lake Hefner GC – North        76-75–151 +7

T18 Mark Budler           Indian Springs – River        75-76–151 +7

T20 Greg Bray             Golf Club of Oklahoma         75-77–152 +8

T20 Kyley Tetley          Indian Springs – River        75-77–152 +8

T20 Mike Hansen           Duncan G&T Club               72-80–152 +8

T23 Brian Ward            Crestview CC                  78-75–153 +9

T23 Kyle Flinton          Quail Creek G & CC            79-74–153 +9

T25 Darren Watts          Lake Hefner GC                76-78–154 +10

T25 Justin Watkins        Topgolf – Oklahoma City       76-78–154 +10

T25 Bruce Baxley          Searcy CC                     82-72–154 +10

T25 Jeff Klappenbach      Kickingbird GC                75-79–154 +10

T25 Blake Bowman          Yamaha Golf Cars              74-80–154 +10

30  Edward Roethlisberger Patricia Island E&GC          76-79–155 +11

31  Derrick Vest          Patriot GC                    78-78–156 +12

T32 Derek Franco          Twin Hills Golf & CC          77-81–158 +14

T32 Derrick Taylor        Kickingbird GC                76-82–158 +14

T32 Joey Martinez         Belmar GC                     80-78–158 +14

T32 Lee Johnson           Hidden Lakes                  80-78–158 +14

T32 Ryan Rody             Gaillardia CC                 75-83–158 +14

T37 Philip Holley         Hot Springs CC                78-81–159 +15

T37 Jason Mink            LaFortune Park GC             82-77–159 +15

T39 Garrett Diel          Belmar GC                     79-81–160 +16

T39 JJ Johnson            Jimmie Austin Golf Club       82-78–160 +16

T41 Bob Ralston           Stuttgart CC                  76-85–161 +17

T41 Tony Bowler           Stroud Municipal Golf Course  79-82–161 +17

T41 Dennis Bowman         Pryor Creek                   75-86–161 +17

T44 Derek Claborn         Dornick Hills G&CC            78-84–162 +18

T44 Vince Bizik                                         81-81–162 +18

T44 Terry Wiles           Kickingbird GC                85-77–162 +18

47  Barry Howard          Hot Springs CC                81-82–163 +19

T48 Jeff Tucker           Surrey Hills                  81-83–164 +20

T48 Steve Blaske          Tex Consolver GC              83-81–164 +20

T48 Colin O’Bryan         MacDonald Park GC             82-82–164 +20

T51 Rusty Wortham         Altus AFB GC / Windy Trai     78-87–165 +21

T51 Corey Burd            Bailey Ranch Golf Club        86-79–165 +21

53  Brad Fulton           Oklahoma City G&CC            89-77–166 +22

54  Brent Cryer           GC of Edmond                  89-78–167 +23

55  Trey Stelling         Quail Creek G & CC            89-82–171 +27

T56 Kurstyn Mills         Oklahoma City G&CC            87-85–172 +28

T56 Philip Jackson        Golf Club of Oklahoma         90-82–172 +28

58  Devin Davenport       Oak Tree National             88-86–174 +30

T59 Tory Hayes            South Central Section         89-87–176 +32

T59 Cole Wasinger         The Golf Club at Southwin     90-86–176 +32

T59 Cody Lack             Clapp Memorial                91-85–176 +32

62  Wade Walker           Hidden Trails CC              89-92–181 +37

T63 William Agler         Fayetteville CC               91-94–185 +41

T63 Brett Dotson          Cleveland/Srixon Golf         92-93–185 +41

DID NOT FINISH

WD  Justin Sellin         Blessings GC                  +5

WD  Rodney Young          Jimmie Austin Golf Club       +11

WD  Kevin Moberg          The Golf Studio               +12

WD  Dustin Semsch         GC of Edmond                  +14

WD  Aaron Speaker         Hillcrest                     +25

WD  Cameron Alford        Alotian Club

WD  Brian Davis           South Central Section

WD  Mike Stewart          Hidden Trails CC

WD  Mark Trudeau          Oak Tree National

DQ  Jason Hase            Buffalo Dunes GC              +2

DQ  Riley Seitz           Reflection Ridge GC           +6

DQ  Steve Ramsey          Indian Springs – River

NC  Jim Woodward


 

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Ken MacLeod

Ken MacLeod

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