Roberson tops field at CCC Men’s Invitational
by RICHARD ROBERTS Banner Sports Editor
Jul 22, 2013 | 1442 views | 0 0 comments | 19 19 recommendations | email to a friend | print
CLEVELAND COUNTRY CLUB general manager Lamar Mills, right, presents Caleb Roberson with the winner’s trophy at the Cleveland Country Club Men’s Invitational, Sunday. Banner photo, RICHARD ROBERTS
CLEVELAND COUNTRY CLUB general manager Lamar Mills, right, presents Caleb Roberson with the winner’s trophy at the Cleveland Country Club Men’s Invitational, Sunday. Banner photo, RICHARD ROBERTS
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First round leader Caleb Roberson didn’t let a late afternoon thunderstorm that drifted across Cleveland Country Club rain on his parade in the final round of the Men’s Invitational.

The tournament winner ended the two-day Invitational with a total score of 136 after rounds of 65-67, breaking the record set by Tyler Neff in 2006 by four strokes.

Ben Rickett finished second with a two-day total of 138, six strokes behind the winner. P.J. Fields was third with a 140 final. Jimmy White III and Richard Spangler tied for fourth at 3-under.

“Actually, I wasn’t hitting the ball the way I wanted to going out,” said Roberson. “After the rain delay I came out and hit four or five with a driver on the range and kind of figured something out. I felt great going back out there. I actually swung it better after the rain delay better than I was before the rain delay.”

Roberson got off to a good start with a birdie on No. 1 after a bad tee shot and went on to pick up another birdie on No. 3 before giving up a stroke with a bogey on the par 3 ninth.

In Senior Division play, Frank Hollowell carded a 3-under and won by nine strokes over Coy Mabry and Gerald Burns.

“I got off to a good start with a birdie on one. I made bogey on nine and made the turn at 1-under. Richard (Spangler) was making a lot of putts, so I decided to keep on doing what I was doing,” he said.

Roberson kept on doing what he was doing until the field was pulled off the course for and hour and 15 minutes to let a thunderstorm play itself out.

After the delay, Roberson’s swing fix set him up for a strong final five holes to close out the win.

“After the rain delay I had about a 15-footer for birdie on 15, and made that. I knew then I had a two-shot lead and I knew even if he made his he had to make two more birdies to catch me.”

The birdie on 15 put Roberson at 4-under and all but locked up the win. Roberson got the birdie after missing a chance to go up by one more after settling for par on 14.

After finding out Ricketts finished with a round of 67, Roberson was able to relax and coast to the finish.

“I hit it pretty close on 15 and got fairways and greens on the way in,” he said. “I had four or five shots to play with. I didn’t have as much pressure as I did on the front nine where Richard was making putts and I was having to make birdies on top of him.”

After winning the Chattanooga Men’s Metro last week and a state amateur qualifier, Roberson will waste no time getting back out on the links with plans to tee it up in today’s Choo-Choo Invitational.

The 95 golfers in the annual Men’s Invitational comprised the largest field in the history of the tournament. CCC general manager Lamar Mills was pleased with the numbers, adding that rain has become the norm for 2013.

“It wouldn’t be a golf tournament in 2013 without a little rain. We’ve had to deal with it all year long. I figure I will just plan to have rain for the rest of the tournaments the rest of the year,” he joked after posting the final scores.

“It was the second largest turnout we’ve had since we’ve had it here at the Country Club. Everyone was complimentary of the golf course all week long and through the last two days. I am glad to see the numbers up and glad to see good scores.”

Cleveland Country Club

Men’s Invitational

Final Round

Caleb Roberson 65-67 — 132 -12

Ben Rickett 71-67 — 138 -6

P.J. Shields 68-72 — 140 -4

Jimmy Whiter III 66-75 — 141 -3

Richard Spangler 68-73 — 141 -3

David Watts 68-75 — 143 -1

David Weeks 69-74 — 143 -1

Joe Markam Jr. 71-72 — 143 -1

Bob Rice 69-75 — 144 E

Matt Robertson 70-76 — 146 +2

Wayne Woolfall 71-75 — 146 +2

Matt Crowder 71-76 — 147 +3

Benjamin Thomas 71-77 — 148 +4

Clay Stephenson 70-81 — 151 +7

Matt Hadden 69-84 — 153 +9