“It’s been virtually a 12 months since Andy Pope teed it up in knowledgeable occasion, however he ended the week elevating the trophy on the Florida Open Championship taking dwelling the $15,000 first-place verify.
Pope fired a 3-under 68 on Sunday to seize the 76th Florida Open title and secured the three-shot victory with a 15-under 199 for the championship with rounds of 68-63-68. That is the primary skilled win for Pope since 2013.
“Anytime you possibly can win an occasion with 156 guys it’s a fairly large accomplishment,” Pope mentioned. “To be within the final group and grasp on to get it performed immediately, it means loads. Particularly representing Florida and The FSGA and the historical past that goes with it, it’s fairly cool to have your identify etched right into a trophy.”
After taking the 36-hole lead with a second-round 63, Pope obtained off to sluggish within the closing spherical with a bogey on the second. Derek Bard, a previous U.S. Novice finalist, made a run on the entrance 9, taking part in his first eight holes at 3-under to take a share of the lead at 11-under.
After reaching the par-5 eighth in two, Pope rolled in his first birdie of the day to take again the lead at 12-under. A lead that he would hold for the rest of the championship. The Orange Tree Golf Membership member stored it rolling on the again facet, birdieing the eleventh and the twelfth to increase his result in three pictures at 14-under.
“The pins had been tucked a lot that I knew guys weren’t going to have the ability to shoot 6 below or 7 below and chase me down,” Pope mentioned. “I believed if I simply performed stable, I’d have a superb probability.”
After taking part in the subsequent 4 holes at even par, Pope hit his drive on the seventeenth and hit 3 wooden up on the inexperienced to twenty toes, rolling within the putt for eagle to maneuver to 16-under for the championship and a 4 shot lead with one gap to play. He completed with a bogey on the 18th and secured the championship victory with a final-round 68.
“I wasn’t trying on the leaderboard all day. Simply specializing in my sport and I knew after I tapped in on the 18th and heard the applause that it was sufficient,” Pope mentioned as he walked off the inexperienced because the 76th Florida Open champion. Pope and the Common Supervisor of Bradenton Nation Membership, Dave Taylor, performed a number of rounds collectively within the Orlando space going again over 20 years and shaking his hand because the Champion behind the 18th inexperienced meant loads to the each of them.
That is the primary FSGA Championship win for Pope, who was taking part in in his third Florida Open Championship. Pope’s second-round 63 was tied for the low spherical of the championship and his 15-under 199 for the championship is the second lowest complete rating in Florida Open historical past.
“I had excessive expectations, however when you haven’t been taking part in competitively, it’s a completely different sport,” Pope mentioned. “You get out right here and rapidly possibly you don’t belief your stuff as a lot. It was good to place all of it on the road once more and get the juices going and really feel the nerves.”
Derek Bard and Pete Kellerman each took dwelling a share of second place, posting a 12-under 202 and taking dwelling $7,187.50 every. Daniel Robinson completed fourth at 10-under 204, ending the weekend with rounds of 66-68-70 and accumulating $4,583.
Nathan Bertsch fired a final-round 67 to earn low-amateur honors and take ninth place at 8-under 206. The Sarasota native carded an eagle and three birdies within the closing spherical to seize the honors. Jacob Penny, an beginner, carded a final-round 66 to complete in a tie for twentieth at 4-under 210. His final-round 66 was the low spherical of the day.”
This submit was written by and might be discovered on the Florida Golf Association website.