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Miles rock-steady in 31st club title

Miles rock-steady in 31st club title Miles rock-steady in 31st club title

Corydon’s Jack Miles went to the beach on Sunday afternoon, but it wasn’t in Florida or some other ocean-front venue. It was the Old Capital Golf Club.
Miles survived several bunker shots throughout his round and even got up and down for what he called a “lucky” par sand-save on the final hole to hold on to a one-stroke victory over Kevin Nash, 144-145. Miles shot even-par 72 both days.
It was Miles’ 31st club championship in 35 years. His first title came at the tender age of 16, and he’s been in the championship flight every year since he was 11.
Several times along the way in Sunday’s play, Miles showed exactly why he’s been such a force at the club.
After Nash plopped his approach shot within 14 inches on the par-4 No. 15, the cool champion responded with the shot of the day: a birdie of his own on a 15-foot putt.
Two holes later, Miles pulled his tee shot left and into a line of trees. Instead of coming down into the thick brush (which had happened the day before and forced Miles to give up two strokes on a lost ball), the shot ricocheted off a trunk and stopped 150 yards from the pin. To make matters worse for the competition, Miles was up to his usual self, which means consistency and putting well, so it was going to take a magnificent round to overtake the perennial champion. Although Nash, who started the afternoon one back of the leaders, shot a good second-round score of 72 from the black tees, it wasn’t quite enough to overcome Miles’ 72.
“It doesn’t happen very often, but sometimes in golf you get over a putt and think to yourself ‘I can make this,’ and that’s the way it was for that putt (on No. 15),” Miles said. “I got over the ball, hit it, and I knew it was going to go in. I was sure of it.
“But on 18, I think I was pretty lucky to come out of that with a short putt for par because the shot out of the sand was about 12 inches from a big lip on the side of the bunker. There’re just too many things that can go wrong with a shot like that. I pretty much expected Kevin to make a par that hole, so the shot was important.”
Miles flipped the ball out of the green side bunker on 18 within tap-in range, bringing applause from the throng that had gathered around the green. Nash, who was atop the small mound on the back of the green, said he thought he had a shot to drop home a match-tying chip. His Nike ball tailed off line just a few inches from the hole, however, and he settled for par.
“I saw where his ball was in the sand on 18, and I figured he’d end up with a two-putt because of that lip. He needed an excellent shot and, of course, that’s what he came up with. Still, I thought I had a really good chance of making my chip,” Nash said.
“I didn’t think I played bad today at all. I had a couple of shots that I’d like to have back, but I’m sure Jack does, too. I just didn’t make the big putt like I needed to get past him.”
The final foursome of Miles, Nash, Shutters and Shaunti Fondrisi started their round in a sluggish fashion, with eight bogeys among the players and a lone birdie on an 25-foot putt by Miles. Fondrisi had the worst time of it with bogeys on his first four holes. The group settled down, but by then, the match was a two-horse race.
Miles held a two-shot lead for several holes, but Nash carded a birdie on No. 12 to get back within one. The two leaders tied the next two holes before Nash looked to make his comeback with his oh-so-close approach on 15, a comeback that was thwarted by Miles’ 15-foot birdie putt.
“He made putts all day long. I was really counting on that shot on No. 15 because that would have put us both at even. At that point, I’m thinking we head to 16 tied, and instead he hits the putt and I still have to make mine, so the pressure was back on me. But that’s Jack. He’s not going to shoot 10 under par. He’s going to putt well, and he’s probably going to finish around par,” Nash said.
Saturday’s play was halted for about an hour because of lightning, causing some players to get out of their rhythm. Miles said he was unaffected by the delay but wishes he could have bottled up some of his shots for Sunday.
“I think if you could have taken my putts today and put them on yesterday’s round or my iron play from yesterday to today’s round, I probably would have finished with a 68 or so. I was playing that well, but I never had all of the aspects together at the same time,” Miles explained.
Larry Harmon was third with 147 while Shutters hung on for a 148. Kerry Zimmerman was fifth with a 152, and Trent Gulley, Jon Mathes, Brent Martin and Fondrisi rounded out the championship flight.
Alan Hess was the first flight victor by two shots over Mick Saulman, while Bill Davis nipped Roy Pack and Roger Miller for top honors in the second flight. Corry Saulman edged out new Corydon Central football coach Darin Ward in the third flight, and in the fourth flight, Alex Zimmerman was a one-shot winner over Tom Conway.
Linda Davis won the Ladies’ Championship. She fired a two-day total of 175, with Karen Clipp earning first place in the first flight with a 212.