Resorters Golf Tournament: One Alexandrian remains in hunt for Executive crown
Two years ago, Jon Freeman of Chanhassen won all the marbles in the Executive Men’s Championship.
This year, he seemed well on his way after earning medalist honors.
But his run came to an end yesterday when he was toppled by Chad Johnson in a white-knuckler of match that went 18 holes.
Another former champ, however, is still riding high. Tim Peterson of Lino Lakes, last year’s big winner, remains in the hunt after a 3-2 victory.
He and Johnson join other quarterfinalists Eric Heimsness, Daryl Schomer, Al Hagen, Kevin Farley, Mike Lueck and Tom Abrahamson. Lueck is the only current Alexandrian to make the “elite eight.”
They’ll tee it up today from the No. 1 tee starting at 1 p.m. Here’s a look back at how they got there:
Peterson capitalized on A.J. Kluver’s shaky stretch of three birdies in the early going to build a lead he never relinquished.
The match opened as Kluver hoped; he won No. 1 with par, but then Peterson won the next three holes with pars to go 2-up. Kluver found his par game on the next two holes to not lose any more ground, but Peterson delivered a birdie on the Minnesota Green to go 3-up. Kluver answered with a par win on No. 8 and matched Peterson’s birdie on No. 9 to trail by two at the turn.
Peterson won just one hole on the back, a par on No. 11, but he was able to match all of Kluver’s pars through No. 16 to pull off a 3-2 win.
Heimsness def. Dolan, 5-4
Eric Heimsness of Woodbury shot nothing but pars through the first six holes and found himself 5-up against John Dolan of Shorewood.
Dolan struck for his first win on hole 9, a par, but knew he was in trouble trailing by four at the turn.
Heimsness won No. 12 with par to go 5-up. Dolan had one more highlight, a par win on No. 13, but Heimsness ended the match early with a birdie on the next hole to win, 5-4.
Daryl Schomer of St. Cloud must like the number 4. That was the only number on his scorecard through the first eight holes. But it was good enough to give him a 3-up lead against Chad Marlow of Wichita, Kansas. Marlow won just one hole over that stretch, a birdie on No. 5, but he added a par win on No. 9 to pull within two at the turn.
Schomer kept the pressure on with par wins on Nos. 10, 12 and 13 to go 5-up. Marlow generated a mini-scare by winning the next two holes with birdie, par, but pars on the next hole handed Schomer a 3-2 win.
In one of the division’s three 1-up matches, Al Hagen of Harrisburg, South Dakota squeaked past Alexandria’s Ken Jensen.
Neither golfer was razor sharp on the course; Hagen was 10-over-par for the day and Jensen was 11-over, but that’s how it goes sometimes in match play.
Hagen won two holes on the front, Nos. 1 and 3 while Jensen had to settle for just one, a par win on No. 9.
Hagen went 2-up with a par win on No. 11, but Jensen climbed back into it with par wins on Nos. 13 and 15. After halving the next hole, Hagen made par on the short 17th hole to regain the lead. He then matched Jensen’s bogey on 18 to seal a 1-up win.
Chad Johnson, a 39-year-old dental sales rep from Burnsville, didn’t exactly “drill” former champion Jon Freeman but he did brush past him at the very end, winning 1-up.
It was a tightly played match from the get-go. Freeman won two holes on the front – a par on No. 2 and an amazing eagle on No. 6. Johnson won just one hole, a par on No. 5, but was able to match Freeman’s birdie on No. 9 to stay within one at the turn.
Both golfers shot par, birdie, birdie on the next three holes before Freeman finally broke the ice with a par win on No. 13 that put him 2-up.
After both golfers parred the next two holes, things were looking good for the former champ. But Johnson had other ideas. He won No. 16 with par, tied the match with a birdie on No. 17 and then calmly made par to take the hole and the victory.
Both golfers played extremely well; Freeman was 5-under par until the last three holes, and Johnson was 2-under for the day.
Farley def. Tax, 1-up
The momentum bounced around between Kevin Farley of Lakeville and Steve Tax of Sartell but ended up in Farley’s corner.
Tax won four holes on the front, Nos. 1, 2, 5 and 8 while Farley won three – Nos. 3, 7 and 9.
Farley won No. 12 with birdie and No. 13 with par to steal the lead. He added a par win on 15 to go 2-up. Tax made a final rally, nailing a clutch birdie on 17 but could only match Farley’s par on the final hole.
Lueck def. Hanson, 4-3
Alexandria’s Mike Lueck never gave up the lead in his match against Michael Hanson of Glenwood.
He won Nos. 3 and 4 with pars and then added a key par win on the long 5th hole to go 3-up.
Hanson got back into the match with par wins on 7 and 8 but Lueck refused to give in. Lueck knocked in a birdie on No. 10 to go 2-up and matched Hanson’s pars on the next two holes. Lueck’s par on No. 13 put him 3-up, and he iced the match in style, winning No. 15 with par for a 4-3 victory.
Tom Abrahamson of Wayzata won five holes on the front and continued the attack on the back nine to route Ross Bullard of St. Paul, 5-4.
Abrahamson’s wins in the first part of the match came on Nos. 1, 4, 5, 6 and 7, highlighted by two birdies. Bullard, meanwhile, won two on the front, holes 3 and 9 with pars to trail by three at the turn.
Abrahamson quickly nailed down the victory with par wins on Nos. 11 and 12 and then matched Bullard’s par and birdie on the next two holes.
Tim Peterson def. A.J. Kluver, 3-2
Eric Heimsness def. John Dolan, 5-4
Daryl Schomer def. Chad Marlow, 3-2
Al Hagen def. Ken Jensen, 1-up
Chad Johnson def. Jon Freeman, 1-up
Kevin Farley def. Steve Tax, 1-up
Mike Lueck def. Michael Hanson, 4-3
Tom Abrahamson def. Ross Bullard, 5-4
1 p.m. – Peterson vs. Heimsness; Schomer vs. Hagen
1:12 p.m. – Johnson vs. Farley; Lueck vs. Abrahamson