By Rob Kiser
It was like the young gun against the wily veteran in the President’s Cup championship match at Piqua Country Club.
And despite playing from behind Kasey Carter’s bombs off the tee on the 6,845-yard PCC layout, Tom Christy used his experience, battled all day and forced extra holes.
But, Carter’s last bomb was his shortest, but most effective — giving him his first President’s Cup in a marathon 38-hole match.
On the 400-yard second hole, the second playoff hole and third time the two played the hole that day, Carter hits his drive off a tree, then missed the green left from 200 yards.
“That’s a hole I am usually hitting from 100 yards on,” Carter said.
Meanwhile, Christy hit his drive on the right side of the fairway and put his approach shot 15-feet from the hole on the lower tier of the two-tier green, where the pin was located.
“It seemed like things were going my way,” Christy said. “But, he is so long, he is still hitting a middle iron even after hitting that tree.”
But, Carter hit a perfect chip across the upper tier. As it reached the lower tier, it rolled towards the hole and dropped in. When Christy was unable to make a tough, curling putt, Carter was the winner.
“He (Christy) was in birdie range,” Carter said. “I was kind of thinking I needed to chip it in. I had been on that side the other two times, so I knew how it broke. When it picked up speed when it dropped down (to the lower tier), I thought it had a chance.”
It completed a run, which included wins over Dave Larger and Andy Arp.
“You know, Andy (Arp) is probably the best player out here,” Carter said about winning a match that went 19 holes. “I only had two bogeys in that match. It is tough to win with all the great players.”
Christy agreed — and admitted playing a bomber like Carter was tough in the wet conditions.
Christy was coming off some spectacular golf Saturday, when he defeated defending champion Chad Sherill 7-and-6.
“It is a tough two weeks,” Christy said. “And it has been wet, so the course was tough. I mean, I am pushing 60 (57) now. That makes it tough.”
Christy had a 2-up lead after nine holes, but had to rally on the back nine after falling behind to get to all square after the opening 18.
Carter, who had birdie 10, 11 and 12 on the opening 18 to open a lead; then opened a 3-up lead on the front nine of the second 18.
But, Christy just kept battling and when he won the par-16th hole, it was all square.
They halved 17 and 18 to force extra holes, with Carter missing a 6-foot par putt that would have won the match on 18.
“I just misread it a little bit,” Carter said.
On the opening playoff hole, a 311-yard par-4, Christy had a 10-foot birdie putt from above the hole.
Carter’s tee shot was near the green, but on hardpan. After leaving the chip short, he chipped to about eight feet below the hole.
“I was just really unlucky,” Carter said. “It was on a patch of dirt. It is just one of those things.”
Christy was careful with his putt to get par and then Carter rolled in his par putt to extend the match to what would be the deciding hole.
“That was not a putt you could take a run at,” Christy said about his downhiller. “It would have been real easy to run it all the way down to the fringe.
Carter finished 12-for-30 on fairways hit, with 14 greens in regulation and 60 putts.
Christy finished 16-for-30 on fairways hit, with 22 greens in regulation and 67 putts.
Christy had rounds of 75 and 78, while Carter had rounds of 76 and 79.
“My putter was my downfall today,” Christy said. “That is usually my strength from 15 feet and in.”
And while Carter had some shortgame issues as well, all that mattered was the final “bomb”.
“Both of us kind of struggled to the finish line,” Carter said with a laugh. “You just have to keep battling. I had hit a couple good chips before that. I just shows you, you just need one good chip.”
In the opening round of the President’s Cup, Jeff Schaffner defeated Benny Scott 5-and-4, Christy defeated Craig Seitz 6-and-5, Paul VanDeventer defeated Mark Manuel 6-and-4, Scott Bradley defeated Phil Kazer in 19 holes, Kasey Carter defeated Dave Owen 8-and-7 and Dave Larger defeated Doug Borchers 2-and-1.
In the quarterfinals, Sherrill defeated Schaffner 3-and-2; Christy defeated VanDeventer 2-and-1; Andy Arp defeated Bradley 3-and-2; and Carter defeated Dave Larger 5-and-3.
Randy Rose claimed the Senior title.
He defeated John Gephart 2-up in the championship match.
Gephart advanced to the title match with a 2-up win over Tony Wendeln.
Marla Flinn added to her record in the Women’s Championship, defeating Trish Bradley 1-up to win the title.
It was her seventh straight title and 14th overall.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.