July 20, 2009
Barry Howard and Ed Lott have good and bad days like every golfer.
As much as Howard and Lott know they could have played better the past three days, their efforts proved good enough to earn them some hardware.
Howard and Lott teamed Sunday to shoot a 70 for a three-day total of 205 that was good enough to win the championship flight of the Columbus Classic at the Columbus Country Club.
"We both played well at times," Howard said. "It takes both of us. It is a partner deal. We could have shot better, but it was a fun day."
Nick Sparks and Tanner Sparks finished second in the championship flight with a 211. Four-time defending champions Brandon Garriga and Josh Martin, who were two shots back entering the final round, shot a 74 and tied with the Sparks at 211.
Dalton Forrester and Alex Roland finished fourth at 212 and Dave Hamilton and Bill Brown and Andy Gilley and William Bartowick tied for fifth at 213.
On another ideal afternoon for golf, Howard and Lott carded five birdies, one double bogeys, and a bogey to earn the right to claim the Classic''s glass trophies.
Howard and Lott said they play a lot together and that their games complement each other. Howard joked he wasn''t sure his game complements Lott''s. He then complimented Lott for being an good golfer and called himself an "average" golfer.
Lott said his partner was being too hard on himself.
"Today he made some good pars when we needed it and kept us in the game early," Lott said.
Lott said he and his teammates didn''t do anything spectacular. He said the steadiness of their round prevented them from getting into trouble, save for the final hole: a double bogey.
"We were lucky enough (that final hole didn''t cost us)," Lott said. "I am very pleased with how Barry played all weekend. You couldn''t ask for more out of a partner."
Lott said he and Howard have played together for years. He said they have competed in state four-ball events, but this was the first time he played in the Columbus Classic.
The duo now will have to come back next year to defend their title.
"You always want to win, but you still have to perform," Lott said. "I am just glad Barry and I got the opportunity to play. Some days we play better and some days we play worse. It all evens out in the end."
Said Howard, "We just try to have a good time."
Drew McBrayer and Albert McBrayer, who were three shots behind the leaders tied for fourth entering the final round, shot a 67 to take the first flight with a 213.
Lance Conn and Zak Holloway, and Terry Fitch and Austin Fitch tied for second at 216.
Kim Vought and Jim Campbell edged Wayne and Mike Purvis to win the second flight. Both teams tied with 217s.
Hal Larkin and John Lewis finished third at 218.
Randy Bailey and Zachary Bailey finished with a 222 and won the third flight by nine strokes. Curt Sparks and Nick McCarthy were second at 231, and Arl Taylor and Steven Buchanon took third (234).
Skip Egger and Travis Ballard finished with a 234 and won the fourth flight by eight shots. Tom McCurty and Frank Culver took second (242) and Vince Cruise and Todd Fishel were third (243).
John Lewis (No. 4), Clay Wilkes (No. 6), Dalton Forrester (No. 9), Tanner Sparks (No. 12), and Joey Persichino (No. 16) won closest to the hole contests and $25 gift certificates.
Adam Minichino is the Sports Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.
1. Southern Mississippi beats MSU in Pearl COLLEGE SPORTS
2. Blair has unique perspective on MSU-Washington matchup COLLEGE SPORTS
3. Mississippi players help MSU grow softball in state COLLEGE SPORTS
4. Energized Bulldogs push on to Sweet 16 LOCAL COLUMNS
5. Tight ends could play bigger role for Mullen's Bulldogs COLLEGE SPORTS