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News archives from 2008

Erik Meland wins first Runny Nose Open in 7 tries

November 30, 2008

The founder of the Mulligan Tour, Erik Meland, found a Runny Nose Open title in his 7th attempt.  The "silly season" event, hosted by Belleville's Harbor Club GC since 2002, greeted 8 players in seasonably mild conditions.  The temperature reached 45 degrees as the 2 foursomes worked their way around the 2nd nine on Saturday and nearly non-existant wind kept it from feeling any colder than it was.

With the assistance of net-birdies on each of the par-5's, Meland (37-35 - 72) won by 6-strokes and pocketed $16 in unofficial prize money.  Ray Collins (38-40 - 78) finished 2nd, with rookie Joe Robar (40-39 - 79) and Tour veteran Greg Kline (40-40 - 80) rounding out the top-4.

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Runny Nose Open


Fox Creek GC conducting 1st annual Fox Hunt Scramble on November 8th

Fox Creek GC in Livonia, home of the Mulligan Tour's Quad-Tour Challenge, is inviting local golfers to it's first annual Fox Hunt Scramble on November 8th.  The event is a four-man scramble format scheduled for a 10:00am shotgun start.  Tour members Jeff Klipa, Phil Abele, Charlie Roy, and Erik Meland are expected to form one team.  Meland (2008) and Klipa (2007) are the last 2 winners of the Quad-Tour Challenge.

Click here for details and application


Captain Kline's crew captures Commissioner's Cup

October 6, 2008

The Mulligan Tour's Central Division represented by Commissioner Greg Kline and 7 others won the 2008 Commissioner's Cup on the first weekend in October.  Team Central held a 9 1/2 to 6 1/2 lead after the Saturday team matches and then clinched the Cup win on Sunday when rookie Tom Sachs completed his comeback win over the West's Denny Ersig for a final 13 to 11 score.  Three of the final 4 singles matches were decided on the 18th green of the Gailes course at Lakewood Shores Resort creating just as much drama, if not more, than at last year's Comm Cup.

This year's Central squad included Kline and Cup veterans Jason Rectenwald, Tom Hoelzle, Barb Hoelzle, Kelly Arnold, and Dan Schwartz.  Sachs and Tom W Litzler made their Comm Cup debuts at the Gailes.  Erik Meland captained a West Division team that included Cup veterans David Martin, Thom Bales, Russ Butler, Carol Koch, John Stepek, and Ersig.  Dick Spiers was the 3rd member making his Cup debut.


Click here for the final results of the 2008 Commissioner's Cup matches


Bruning wins Central Skins Game

September 28, 2008

Bob Bruning, the 2008 Money Titleist, added to his winnings by winning 6 skins worth $48 at the Central Skins Game on Sunday.  Bruning, winner of the 2006 West Skins Game, won a $6 skin on the 14th, a $12 skin on the 16th, and a $20 skin on the 18th to secure the victory.

Commmissioner Greg Kline took 4 skins worth $16, while rookie Tom Sachs won 1 skin at the 9th hole for $12 after 3 carry-overs.  Old Tom Litzler won 2 skins, on the 4th and 6th holes for $4.  


Martin wins West Skins Game

September 28, 2008

David Martin, playing in his 5th Skins Game, won the 18th hole for a $20 skin that secured the 2008 West Skins Game title.  He finished with 3 skins worth $42.  Martin, winner of the Skins Game in 2002 and 2004, has accumulated a total of $124 from those 5 events.

Terry Baar, playing in her first Skins Game, won the 16th hole with a par - an $18 skin after 3 carry-overs.  Phil Abele won 4 skins in the first 10 holes and finished with $14.  Erik Meland won a $6 skin at the 13th hole.




Greg Kline takes TOUR Championship in the dark

Bob Bruning wins 2008 Money Title

September 21, 2008

Greg Kline followed the light at the end of the tunnel and, after some spirited debate, found victory again at the TOUR Championship.  One of several players forced to finish their rounds in the dark, Kline did post an 18-hole score but some others could not.  The tournament rules committee considered the issue and finally declared a 12-hole tournament to be official with Kline edging Bob Bruning by 1 stroke and Tom W Litzler by 2.

Unfortunately for the Mulligan Tour's final major of the year, Shepherd's Hollow Golf Club delayed the start of the TOUR Championship, set for 2:00pm, by some 20 minutes.  But the real damage was done by allowing a 5 1/2 hour round!  The final 2 groups played several holes in Oakland county dusk.

Kline has won 3 of the 4 TOUR Championships played adding this one to his victory at Frankenmuth last year and the inaugural event at Moose Ridge in 2005.  The $50 first place check gives Kline, the Tour's leading major championship winner (7), a total of $96 for the year.

The 2nd place check of $35 secured the 2008 Money Title for Bruning.  With his 11th top-4 finish of the season, including wins at the Real McCoy Classic and the Match Play Championship, Bruning took in $241.50 for the year - ranking as the 4th best season in Tour history.


Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 TOUR Championship


PLAYERS gets Barbed

September 7, 2008

Barb Hoelzle established herself as the top lady golfer on the Mulligan Tour on Saturday.  Already enjoying a career year, Hoelzle won her first major title by shooting a 2-under par 70 at the 2008 PLAYERS Championship winning by 6 strokes at Northville Hills Golf Club.  She led the field by hitting 12 of 14 fairways and converted 7 birdie attempts.  The field of 16 included the top-20 money winners on the Tour's Central division.

Hoelzle collected her biggest payday on Tour ($48) and has taken in $126 this year, nearly doubling her previous best year ($65 in 2005).  She currently ranks 8th on the 2008 money list but will skip the TOUR Championship at Shepherd's Hollow and rejoin the action at the Commissioner's Cup in early October.

With $299 in career earnings, Hoelzle surpassed Sue Meland as the highest ranked female on the career money list (#19).  Hoelzle is the 3rd lady golfer to win the PLAYERS (Meland in 2000 and Cindy Loescher in 2005) and the 4th lady to win a grand slam event following DeVonne Mowry's win at the 2007 Match Play Championship.

Ray Collins (36-40 - 76) led the rest of the field and finished a stroke ahead of Rick Persichetti (42-35 - 77), Bob Baar (35-42 - 77), and Bob Bruning (38-39 - 77).  Bruning went over the $200 mark for the year ($206.50) and continues to lead the race for the 2008 Money Title with only the TOUR Championship remaining.

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 PLAYERS Championship


Ersig wins Crazy redux

August 31, 2008

Denny Ersig, a 4 year Tour pro from Shelby Township, added the 2008 Crazy Brit to his resume of 4 Tour wins.  Ersig collected 36 points in the British Stableford scoring system and beat Dick Spiers and John Powell by 2 points in the tournament rescheduled from its rained out July 12th date.

The difference was the short par-3 17th where Ersig picked up 2 points for a par while Spiers and Powell failed to get any points after making double-bogies.  Ersig and Spiers both earned inviatations to the PLAYERS Championship next Saturday at Northville Hills.  Powell moved up from 18th to 12th on the Central money list and will also make the trek to Northville Hills.  Thom Bales and Rick Persichetti tied for 4th place with 33 points.

Dennis Ersig - 2008 Crazy Brit champ

Click here for complete final results of the 2008 Crazy Brit


Martin wins WESTERN

August 23, 2008

David Martin collected his 6th Mulligan Tour major championship on Saturday winning the 2008 WESTERN Championship at Moose Ridge GC.  Martin bogied the final hole but finished with a 1 over par 72 to win by 2 strokes over John Powell.  Martin, the Tour's all time leading money winner ($1,246.20), becomes the first player to complete a career grand slam.  The WESTERN was his 4th different major title - joining the Memorial tournament (2001, 2003), the Match Play Championship (2002), and the PLAYERS Championship (2001, 2004).

Powell (41-33 - 74) finished the tournament with 3 consecutive birdies to catch playing partner and defending champ Erik Meland.  Powell has been runner-up in 3 of the 4 majors he has entered his rookie season.  Meland (34-41 - 75) settled for 3rd place but secured the West division money title ($121.00) for a second year in a row.

Bob Bruning (41-35 - 76) finished 4th, his 9th top-4 this season in 16 starts.  He retakes the overall money lead ($194.50) from Thom Bales with 3 events still remaining on the 2008 schedule.

David Martin - 2008 WESTERN Champion

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 WESTERN Championship


Klipa is Big Dog for '08

August 16, 2008

Jeff Klipa entered the 2008 Big Dog Pro-Am looking for a ticket to Moose Ridge - site of the WESTERN Championship on August 23rd.  Likely needing a top-3 finish to earn enough prize money to get into the top-20, Klipa ended up with the automatic berth via the winner's circle.  With the help of Sergio Garcia's 68 in the final round of the PGA Championship, Klipa added his own 74 at Sandy Creek GC to finish at even par 142, 3 strokes better than Rick Persichetti.

Persichetti (70-75 - 145) started the day tied for 4th, 2 strokes back, thanks to Phil Mickelson's final round 70.  Thom Bales had the low net round (73) from the Mulligan Tour players on Saturday but needed to make up too much ground from his 2 PGA picks - Anthony Kim (77) and Aarron Baddley (73).  He finished in a tie for 3rd with David Martin (71-75 - 146) but regained the lead on the Mulligan Tour money list ($185.50) after taking in $12 from the Big Dog Pro-Am and $9 earlier in the day at Carrington.

Jeff Klipa - 2008 Big Dog Pro-Am champ


Arnold nets 4th win of the year

August 16, 2008

Kelly Arnold returned to his winning ways of May.  Winless since 3 victories in the first month of the season, Arnold shot a 32-37 - 69 at Carrington GC to win the 2008 Carrington Classic.  The 4 victories leads the Tour this year and has him perched atop the Central division money list with $119.00.  He ranks 4th overall with $159.00 in total prize money in 2008.  He solidified his position on the Mulligan Tour world ranking, occupying the top spot for the last 12 weeks.

Old Tom Litzler (38-35 - 73) and Dave Randall (35-38 - 73) shared 2nd place and Thom Bales (38-37 - 75) netted his 7th top-4 finish of the year.

Kelly Arnold - 2008 Carrington Classic champ


Roy captures Caddyshack

August 9, 2008

Tour rookie Charlie Roy, playing in only his 6th Tour event, won the 2008 Anchor Conveyor Caddyshack Classic on Saturday by shooting 35-30 - 65, 2 strokes better than Bob Bruning.  Roy earned $36 for the win and is qualified for the PLAYERS Championship at Northville Hills on September 6th.

Roy, the 10th different champion in 10 years, was 3rd in the field hitting 10 greens in regulation but led the field making 9 net-birdies.  He was also finished closest-to-the-pin on the par-3 13th to add a $25 Speedway gift card to his take.

The 2nd place finish ($27) allows Bruning (31-36 - 67) to take back the top spot on the Money List with $182.50 in prize money.  Kelly Arnold made 3 consecutive net eagles (holes 7, 8, and 9) to get into contention but finished at 4-under 68 in 3rd place.  Dan Schwartz (34-35 - 69) and Dave Randall (33-36 - 69) shared 4th.

Title sponsor for 8 years, Anchor Conveyor Products Inc thanked cosponsors LAM Industries, U&B Computers, Oakland Bolt & Nut Co., and RJ Projects, Inc. for their continued support of the Caddyshack Classic.

Charlie Roy - 2008 Caddyshack Classic champ

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Caddyshack Classic


Randall wins Ugly Pants Open

August 3, 2008

Dave Randall holed a 150-yard approach shot on Downing Farms' #13 for a natural eagle and went on to win the 2008 Ugly Pants Open on Sunday by 1-stroke over Greg Kline.  Randall netted an even par 71 to secure his 2nd Tour victory.  He is ranked #1 on the Central Division Money List with $67.50 in earnings this year and ranks 5th overall with $116.50 in prize money.  

John Stepek won the "Ugliest Attire" award for the 2nd time and took home a voucher for $40 off of the 2009 Tour membership.

Dave Randall - 2008 Ugly Pants Open champ

Click here for complete 2008 Ugly Pants Open final results


Collins wins Fifty Cent in playoff

August 2, 2008

In the 2nd Fifty Cent Classic, Ray Collins beat Thom Bales in a playoff after both shot even par 72's at Sycamore Hills GC on Saturday.  After Bales led the field with only 29 putts in the regulation 18 holes, his tank seemed empty for the playoff.  Collins 2-putted 4 times while Bales 3-putted the 2nd and 3rd holes of the playoff.  

This is Collins' 3rd Tour win following victories at the 2004 Memorial tournament and the 2007 Holy Grail.  He missed participating in the 4-way playoff at the Real McCoy Classic in June after tying for 1st but leaving for prior obligations before the playoff could start.  He has earned $62.50 this season (11th on the overall money list) while ranking 4th on the Central division money list with $50.50 in earnings.


Click here for complete 2008 Fifty Cent Classic final results 



Bruning joins the ranks of Mulligan Tour major champs

July 27, 2008

Bob Bruning cruised to victory in the 2008 Match Play Championship on Sunday at Willow Metropark GC besting rookie John Powell 7&6 in the final.  Bruning, the #9 seed by virtue of being 13th on the Mulligan Tour world rankings, fought his way into the final four by beating Old Tom Litzler 3&2 in the first round and slipping past #1 ranked Kelly Arnold 2-up in the 2nd round.  A Sunday morning semi-final match with Tom Moran ended 5&3 in Bruning's favor setting up the showdown with Powell.

Bruning's record in 3 Match Play Championships is now 7-2 after the 4-0 run to the title this year.  Including his singles win in the 2007 Commissioner's Cup, he is 8-2 overall in match play.  He won the 3rd place match in the 2007 Match Play Championship after losing to eventual winner DeVonne Mowry in a semi-final.

Bruning's first major win comes with a $60 first place check, leaping him to the top of the 2008 Money Standings with $148.50 in earnings.  He won the Real McCoy Classic in June and has 6 top-4's for the year.  His next scheduled start will be at the Ugly Pants Open followed by a trip down to the Links at Lake Erie for a shot at the Caddyshack Classic.

Powell, the early favorite for Rookie of the Year, vanquished the defending champ, DeVonne Mowry, on Friday with a 7&6 score.  He then turned away John Stepek 4&3 on Saturday to set up a semi-final match with the '02 Match Play champ, David Martin.  Another match won before the 16th hole, and Powell would never play the final 3 holes at Willow Metropark in competition.  Still, all in all, a good showing for the young player from Livonia with a $40 payday that elevates him up to 6th on the money list ($93.25) and an excellent chance to qualify for the TOUR Championship.

Bob Bruning - 2008 Match Play Champion

Click here for complete final results of the 2008 Match Play Championship



Meland claims Quad-Tour title

July 20, 2008

In his record 138th start on Tour, Erik Meland won a record 16th Tour title by beating Dan Schwartz in a playoff to win the 2008 Quad-Tour Challenge.  Meland netted an even par 71 at Fox Creek GC on Sunday to finish at 7-under 278 in the combined scores of the 4 Tour's.  Meland was aided by the Saturday scores of eventual British Open champ Padraig Harrington (72), Champions Tour player Loren Roberts (65), and LPGA youngster Erica Blasberg (70).  Schwartz, winner of the QTC in 2000 and 2001, shot a back-nine 31 to rally to a 1-under 70 finish.  He also posted a 278 total after taking Sergio Garcia's 74, Loren Roberts' 65, and Angela Park's 69.

The 2nd playoff in QTC history saw Meland 2-putt 4 times while Schwartz 3-putted the 1st and 3rd holes to lose the putt-off 10-8.  Meland picks up a $32 winner's check to move up to 3rd on the money list with $129 in prize money in 2008.  Schwartz continues to have success at the QTC with his 5th top-4 finish in 7 starts since 1999.

Tom Sachs (69-283) and Tom W Litzler (73-283) shared 3rd place.  The leader after 3 rounds, Terry Barr (81-284) finished in 5th.

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Quad-Tour Challenge


Persichetti adds red ribbon for 2nd Strokes on a Rope win

July 20, 2008

In a battle of the Thousand dollar men, Rick Persichetti beat David Martin in a playoff for the 2008 Strokes on a Rope title, his 14th career win and 3rd this season.  Martin ($1,161.20) and Persichetti ($1,040.40) rank 1st and 2nd respectively on the Mulligan Tour career money list.  Persichetti is now 3-1 in playoffs with 46 top-4's in 93 starts.  Martin is 3-2 in playoffs with 59 top-4's in 103 starts.

Martin led the field hitting 11 of 14 fairways at the Huntmore GC, hosting the Strokes on a Rope for a 2nd consecutive year.  He needed 32 putts to complete his round of 13-over 85.  Persichetti led the field with 7 greens-in-regulation but 4 3-putts (36 putts total) kept him from winning the tournament in the regulation 18 holes.  He finished with a bogey at 18 that completed his round of 85.  The ensuing playoff saw each of the two go 2-2-3-2 in the 4-hole aggregate score putt-off.  Finally, on the 2nd hole of sudden death, Martin 3-putted once more opening the door to Persichetti's winning 2-putt.

Persichetti's win adds a red ribbon to the Strokes on a Rope trophy by virtue of his 2nd win in the string & scissors event.  His first SoaR title came in his rookie year (2003) when the tournament was played at Salem Hills GC.  Only Todd Stuart, winner in '99, '00, and '01, has a blue ribbon for his 3rd victory.

Rick Persichetti - 2008 Strokes on a Rope champ

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Strokes on a Rope


Carol Koch is Ladies champ

July 13, 2008

Carol Koch, hero of last September's Commissioner's Cup, won her first tournament on Sunday at the 2008 MT Ladies Open.  Koch shot an 8-over par 80 in blustery conditions at Lake Forest Golf Club to beat Barb Hoelzle and Terry Baar by 4-strokes.  Koch built the 4-stroke lead on the front nine aided by birdies at the 5th and 8th and an eagle at the 9th.  She hit 8 of 14 fairways and led the field with 34 putts.

Barb Hoelzle (40-44 - 84) and Terry Baar (39-45 - 84) shared 2nd place and Maureen Abele (41-44 - 85) finished 4th in the "Rally for a Cure" event to benefit breast cancer awareness.  Koch also won the 50/50 putting challenge and promptly donated her 50% ($45) back to the cause.  In total, the Mulligan Tour will donate $400 to the Susan G Komen foundation on behalf of the 11 players participating in the 2008 MT Ladies Open.

Carol Koch - Lady Golfer of the Year


Persichetti takes Two-Stick,

Crazy Brit rained-out

July 13, 2008

Rick Persichetti claimed his 13th Mulligan Tour title on Saturday by winning the Two-Stick Classic at Rush Lake Hills GC in Pinckney.  A passing shower delayed play for about 20 minutes early in the tournament, but when play resumed Persichetti continued the steady played exhibited at the Harbour Pointe Open 2 weeks prior.  Armed only with a Callaway 3-hybrid and a Ping 9-iron, "Perch" cancelled out 4 bogies with 4 birdies thru 12 holes and was holding at level par.   And though he played the next 4 holes at 5-over, he finished with a 38-40 - 78 and a 4-shot victory over Erik Meland.  With the $28 first place check, Persichetti became the 2nd player in Tour history, joining David Martin, to surpass the $1000 mark in career prize money.

Meland, the 2001 Two-Stick winner, shot 43-39 - 82 to finish 1 shot ahead of Tom Hoelzle.  Meland continues to lead the West division money standings with $97 in earnings.  Hoelzle finished with a 42-41 - 83, his first top-4 in 2008.  Bob Bruning secured 4th place with a 43-43 - 86.

Rick Persichetti - 2008 Two-Stick Classic champ


Play at the Crazy Brit was halted when rains swept through Whispering Willows just as most of the field made the turn.  With a few players withdrawing and a look at the radar indicating the rain could continue for an hour or more, Commissioner Greg Kline called off the tournament.  Since not every player finished 9 holes, the rules call for a cancellation of the results and a rescheduling of the tournament.  The most likely scenario would be a Sunday, August 24th date.  However, the Tour could consider Saturday, August 30th, just 1 week before the PLAYERS Championship.



Thom Bales wins wet HPO for first major victory

June 29, 2008

The first half of the 2008 Mulligan Tour season ended on Saturday with Thom Bales claiming his 3rd win of the year and first major victory.  The 2008 Commercial Underwriters Harbour Pointe Open took nearly 7 hours to complete after a rain delay closed Eagle Crest GC in the middle of the round.  When play resumed, Bales completed his round of 5 birdies and 5 bogies to finish at even par for the championship and a 1-stroke win over Jason Rectenwald.

The $50 first place check moves Bales to the top of the money standings with $140 in earnings this year.  His 3 wins are part of 5 top-4 finishes in 9 starts this season.  In only his 3rd season, Bales became the 15th Tour player to go over $300 in career earnings.  He has $349 from 16 top-4's in 43 tournaments played.

Rectenwald (36-37 - 73) birdied his 17th hole (#14) to get past Young Tom Litzler and Rick Persichetti.  Litzler (34-40 - 74) was 2-under thru 12 holes but finished bogey - double-bogey on his closing holes.  Persichetti (35-39 - 74), who won his first major title here at Eagle Crest in the 2004 HPO, finished 5-over on his last 4 holes to drop back into the tie for 3rd with Litzler.  John Stepek (34-41 - 75) was 3-under thru 10 but made bogies on 6 of his last 8 holes to finish at 3-over 75 for solo 5th place.  Greg Kline (38-39 - 77) and rookie Joe Robar (38-39 - 77) shared 6th place.

Tournament host and former HPO champ Dan Schwartz finished in 9th place at 7-over 79 - his best showing in the Open since his win here at Eagle Crest in 2000.  Schwartz was happy to announce after the tournament that, thanks to the players' participation in the charity raffle, $280 was raised for the benefit of the St.Judes Childrens Research Center.

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Harbour Pointe Open


Bruning wins Real McCoy Classic in a playoff

June 22, 2008

Bob Bruning won a 4-way playoff on Saturday to win the 2008 Real McCoy Classic, his 3rd Mulligan Tour title in 30 career starts.  Bruning, winner of the 2006 Two-Stick Classic and the 2007 Fifty Cent Classic, finished at 2-under par 69 and tied with Ray Collins, Russ Butler, and rookie Tom Sachs.

Collins missed the playoff due to time commitments after the tournament.  Bruning, Butler, and Sachs each 3-putted the first hole of the 4-hole aggregate score playoff.  Sachs took a 1-stroke advantage after 1-timing the 2nd hole but Bruning answered with a 1-putt of his own on the 3rd hole.  Butler's chances evaporated after a 4-putt on Farmington Hills' treacherous practice green.  The win was secured when Bruning 2-putted the 4th while Sachs needed 3 putts.

Bruning jumps up to 4th on the money list ($78) with the win - his 4th top-4 of the year - and is headed to the Harbour Pointe Open at Eagle Crest next weekend with hopes of another solid performance.  He finished tied with the low score at the Open last year but was not available for a playoff with winner Jeff Klipa.

Thom Bales (36-36 - 72), Tom Moran (37-35 - 72), and Maureen Abele (36-36 - 72) shared 5th place and tournament host Victor McCoy finished T-12 with a 36-39 - 75.

Host Vic McCoy with 2008 Real McCoy Classic winner Bob Bruning

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Real McCoy Classic


Hoelzle wins her 2nd Par-54, Meland takes Fox Hunt again

June 21, 2008

Barb Hoelzle won the Par-54 Classic at the Strategic Fox last Friday, her 2nd win in the 5 year history of this tournament.  She won the event in 2005 and also finished with the low score in 2006 but lost in a playoff to David Martin.  She played the back nine in 1-under par to overtake rookie Tom Sachs and win by 2.  Hoelzle collected her 2nd win in 2 weekends - she won the Holy Grail on June 14th - and moves up to 7th on the money list with $59 in earnings this year.

Erik Meland won another small field Fox Hunt last Friday.  The defending champ hit 9 greens in regulation, including the 12th, 13th, and 14th holes that were each worth 5 points.  Meland collected 47 points in all and finished 3 points ahead of Bob Bruning.  John Powell (39 points) and Phil Abele (32) secured a top-4 finish as the Fox Hunt played for the 2nd consecutive year with the minimum 4 player field.


Cwikla takes Plymouth Open

June 14, 2008

Jim Cwikla collected his first Tour win in 6 years on Saturday after firing a 1-under par 69 on the Fox Hills Classic course to take a 2-stroke win at the 2008 Plymouth Open.  His longtime Memorial tournament partner Chris Drake finished 2nd at 71 while Dave Randall and Bob Bruning shared 3rd with 5-over par 75's.

Cwikla becomes the 10th player to surpass $400 for career earnings with a total of $411 from 21 top-4 finishes in 70 starts.  Cwikla's first 4 wins were all majors in the Tour's early years, including the first Harbour Pointe Open and PLAYERS Championships in 1999, and the Memorial Tournaments in 2000 and 2002.

Jim Cwikla - 2008 Plymouth Open champ


Barb Hoelzle finds the Holy Grail

June 14, 2008

Barb Hoelzle posted a 1-over par 72 at St. John's Golf & Conference Center and claimed her 3rd title at the 2008 Holy Grail.  Hoelzle (formerly Barb Randle) beat Erik Meland by a stroke and added the Holy Grail to her Ugly Pants Open (2007) and Par-54 Classic (2005) victories.  The $32 first place check was her largest payday to date, securing a spot in the WESTERN Championship on August 23rd, and placing 4th on the current West division money list.

Meland (36-37 - 73) recorded his 3rd top-4 of the year while Terry Baar (40-36 - 76) and Victor McCoy (40-36 - 76) shared 3rd place.  Baar has consecutive top-4's after her T-3 at the Go Blue Classic a week earlier.  And McCoy played well as he prepares to host his tournament next weekend at Farmington Hills GC - the Real McCoy Classic.

Barb Hoelzle - 2008 Holy Grail champ


Stepek wins Go Blue Classic

June 7, 2008

John Stepek made a back nine charge at Reddeman Farms on Saturday to win the 2008 Go Blue Classic title.  Making 5 birdies over the last 9 holes, Stepek overcame a double-bogey at #9 and bogies at #16 and #18 to finish at 2-under 70.  This was Stepek's 2nd victory on Tour in 39 career starts.  The $28 first place check carries him up to 3rd on the West Division money list and 10th overall.

3rd year Touring pro Dave Randall is having a breakout season.  A 38-34 - 72 allowed Randall to get ahead of 8 players shooting 73 or 74 and to record his 4th top-4 finish in 4 starts this year.  He has total earnings of $78 in 2008 ranking 3rd on the money standings.  A foursome finishing at 73 included "Young Tom" Litzler, Phil Abele, Terry Barr, and rookie John Powell. 

John Stepek - 2008 Go Blue Classic champ

  Top-4 Finishers at the 2008 Go Blue Classic


37-33 - 70 (-2)

John Stepek   $28


38-34 - 72 (E)

Dave Randall   $21


37-36 - 73 (+1)

Tom R. Litzler   $5.25


36-37 - 73 (+1)

John Powell   $5.25


35-38 - 73 (+1)

Phil Abele   $5.25


39-34 - 73 (+1)

Terry Baar   $5.25



2nd Green Towel for Persichetti, Arnold is 3 for 3 in 2008

May 31, 2008

Rick Persichetti and Kelly Arnold teamed up to win the 2008 Memorial Tournament last Saturday at Gateway Golf Club.  Partners for the 2nd year in a row, the pair improved on their T-4 finish in 2007 by posting a 4-under par 68 to beat the rookie team of John Powell and Joe Robar by a stroke.  Persichetti and Arnold were the only team to not record a bogie in the 2-man scramble format.

Persichetti became the 5th player to earn a 2nd Green Towel for winning the Memorial Tournament.  He won the Memorial in 2005 with Ray Collins.  It's the first Green Towel for Arnold, the hottest player on Tour.  He has 3 wins in 3 starts this year and leads the Money Standings with $100 in prize money.

Powell and Robar had 5 birdies in a 6 hole stretch on the front nine but a bogey on their 17th hole (#13) kept them from forcing a playoff.  They finished with a 3-under 69 in their first major championship.

The 2006 champs, Greg Kline and Bob White, finished in 3rd place with a 2-under 70.  They finished 1-stroke ahead of their playing partners Thom Bales and Bob Bruning.

Kelly Arnold and Rick Persichetti - 2008 Memorial Tournament champs

The Top-4 at the 2008 Memorial Tournament


68 (-4)

Rick Persichetti Kelly Arnold


69 (-3)

John Powell Joe Robar


70 (-2)

Greg Kline Bob White


71 (-1)

Bob Bruning Thom Bales



Arnold is Sweet Sixteen champ

May 17, 2008

Kelly Arnold nearly recorded the Tour's 4th hole-in-one on Saturday.  His tee shot at the 172-yard 3rd (his 12th hole) at Salem Hills stopped just 3 inches from the hole.  The tap in birdie was a net ace that Arnold followed up with 6 pars coming in securing his 2nd win of the year.   Arnold threw out 2 double-bogies to finish at 4-under par in the "best 16 holes" format beating Dan Schwartz by 1 stroke.  The 2008 Sweet Sixteen champ is 2 for 2 after winning the Tin Cup 2 weeks ago and not playing last weekend.  Arnold is ranked 1st on the Central Division Money List and tied for 2nd overall with $60 in Tour earnings.

Schwartz earned his first prize money of the young season by finishing at 3-under par for 16 holes.  He birdied 2 of the last 5 while playing in the group with Arnold.  Schwartz picked up a $21 check for 2nd place and ranks 9th on the Money List.

Dave Randall continues a strong start to his 2008 season.  The 4th year Tour pro from Northville finished at 1-under par after throwing out a couple of bogies (one a double, the other a single).  Randall secured his 3rd consecutive top-4 finish in '08 and is 4th overall in earnings after 3 starts.  Chris Drake took the 4th spot with an even par finish.

Notables: Arnold led the field with 12 Greens in Regulation, John Hawkinson led with 30 putts, and Dave Randall hit 11 fairways while Jim Cwikla and David Martin hit 10. Hawkinson, Greg Kline and Dick Speirs all had chip ins during their rounds.


Kelly Arnold - 2008 Sweet Sixteen champ

Click here for final standings in the 2008 Sweet Sixteen



Bales wins Animal House

May 17, 2008

Thom Bales shot a 36-34 - 70 to claim the 2008 Animal House Classic just 2 weeks after winning at Pine View.  Bales added another 7 birdies and leads the Tour with 5.33 birdies per 18 holes.

Bob Baar (39-34 - 73) collected $27 for 2nd place - his 3rd straight top-4 finish to start the season.  Baar led the field in driving accuracy hitting 10 of 14 fairways.  Tom Moran (40-34 - 74) netted his first top-4 of the year earning himself $18.  A trio of players shared 4th place including promising new rookie John Powell.  Playing with a temp-4 handicap index, Powell (37-40 - 77) was making his 3rd start on Tour and earned his first payday.  Erik Meland and Ray Collins were the other 2 finishing at 5-over 77.   Notables: Bales led the field with 9 GiR and John Stepek had fewest putts for the day with 29.

Collins led the field with lowest Zoo Ratio (0.169 from only 2 animals during the round) and was in great shape to take the $25 bonus in the 4-man putt off.  After 3 consecutive 2-putts, Collins led the other particpants - John Stepek, Tom Hoelzle, and Tom Moran by 2 strokes each.  But a tentative 4th hole left him 5 feet short and when Stepek made the only ace of the putt-off, Collins needed to make to win.  An aggressive stroke missed the hole and left a hefty come-backer that he also missed giving Stepek the $25 Carl's Golfland giftcard.


Thom Bales - 2008 Animal House Classic champ

Click here for complete final standings of the 2008 Animal House Classic



Butler takes Chelsea by 4

May 11, 2008

Russ Butler shot a 34-35 - 69 at Pierce Lake GC to take the 2008 Chelsea Classic title - his 2nd career Tour win.  Butler, the only player to finish in red numbers, led the field in driving accuracy (10 FH) and birdies made (7).  The win was worth $28 and qualifies Butler for the 2008 WESTERN Championship.  His previous win came at the 2007 Tin Cup.

Bob Baar (40-33 - 73) recorded his 2nd top-4 of the young season and finds himself ranked 4th on the early season Money Standings ($33).  Rick Persichetti (39-35 - 74) took 3rd place earning his first prize money of the year ($14).  Phil Abele (37-38 - 75) also finished in the top-4 for the 2nd consecutive week. Abele led the field with a record 26 putts. John Powell matched Butler with 7 greens hit.


Russ Butler - 2008 Chelsea Classic champ


Klipa wins Western Swing

May 11, 2008

Jeff Klipa survived a wild Western Swing on Saturday at Huron Meadows Metropark.  A 6-stroke lead nearly vanished in the closing holes as Klipa (38-39 - 77) finished 4-over on the last 3 holes while Dave Randall birdied the 18th to pull within one.  A 5-year Tour veteran, Klipa's 6th career Tour win was his 5th victory in his last 15 starts.  The 2008 Western Swing title was worth $36 in prize money ranking Klipa 2nd on the Money Standings.

Randall (39-39 - 78) is the leading money winner in the early season after his 2nd top-4 finish in as many weeks.  After placing 3rd at the Tin Cup, Randall's 2nd place finish at the Western Swing brought in a $27 check giving him $43 in earnings for the season.

DeVonne Mowry made her 2008 debut with a top-4 finish despite missing the first hole.  Mowry took the max gross score (quadruple bogey) on #1 but rallied to close with a 41-38 - 79 to win $18.  John Hawkinson (39-41 - 80) earned $9 for 4th place.

Jeff Klipa - 2008 Western Swing champ


Bales wins PVC in playoff

May 4, 2008

Thom Bales birdied the 18th hole at Pine View GC to shoot a back-nine 35 and force a playoff with 2-time Pine View Classic winner Erik Meland.  Bales (40-35 - 75) needed 33 putts on Pine View's freshly sanded greens and none more important than the 2-putt from the lower tier on the finishing hole.

Meland (37-38 - 75) dug himself a hole by 3-putting the 2nd and 3rd holes of the 4-hole aggregate score putt-off.  He made the finish a little more interesting by 1-timing the final hole, but Bales calmly sank his 4th consecutive 2-putt for his 3rd Tour win.  It was Bales' first playoff experience while Meland suffered his first loss in 4 playoffs.

Bob Baar (39-40 - 79) and Phil Abele (41-38 - 79) shared 3rd place.  Baar, the 2006 PVC champ, matched birdies with Abele at the 18th to secure the top-4 finish.  Abele led the field with 7 birdies for the tournament but had only 1 par during the hot & cold round.


Thom Bales - 2008 Pine View Classic champ

Top-4 finishers at the 2008 Pine View Classic


40-35 - 75

Thom Bales   $32


37-38 - 75

Erik Meland   $24


39-40 - 79

Bob Baar   $12


41-38 - 79

Phil Abele   $12


Arnold takes Tin Cup

May 3, 2008

Kelly Arnold captured his 2nd Tour win last Saturday at Hickory Creek Golf Club by playing his final 9 holes in 2-under par.  Arnold (39-35 - 74) finished at 2-over for the tournament winning the Tin Cup by 2 strokes over Tom W Litzler.  Arnold, whose previous Tour victory was the 2006 PLAYERS Championship, won $32 and is automatically qualified for the 2008 PLAYERS Championship in September.

"Old Tom" Litzler (40-36 - 76) led the field with 29 putts and converted 4 birdies (T-1 in the field) but finished 2nd for the 10th time in his career.  Dave Randall (39-38 - 77) led the field with 10 fairways but was relegated to 3rd place after recording 3 bogies in his last 6 holes.  The defending champ Russ Butler (38-40 - 78) fought a faulty putter but secured a top-4 finish in the first Central division tournament of the new season.

Kelly Arnold - 2008 Tin Cup champ

Top-4 finishers at the 2008 Tin Cup


74 (+2)

Kelly Arnold  $32


76 (+4)

Tom W Litzler  $24


77 (+5)

Dave Randall  $16


78 (+6)

Russ Butler  $8


Snow golf for Easter weekend

March 22, 2008

A late winter snow storm dumped 8 inches of fluffy white snow on Pine View Golf Club on Good Friday just 6 weeks before Pine View will open the 2008 Western division schedule.  Granted, Easter was early on the calendar this year, but the holiday weekend normally provides golfers with the chance to get in the first practice round of the new season.



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