PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (June 11, 2013) — Randy Haag added his name to NCGA history on Tuesday, not that his name can’t be found in it already. The six-time NCGA Player of the Year—a record by itself—became the first player ever to win a fourth NCGA Master Division title by posting a 36-hole score of 144, even-par.
With a fourth NCGA Master Division title to his name and his first NCGA major win since the 2011 Master Division Four-Ball title, Haag was happy to get out of his mini-slump. He also wasn’t any less excited winning an event he’s already won three other times (’99, ’02 and ’09).
“It never gets old [winning this event],” he said. “It’s almost like this one is more important than the others.”
Starting the day two shots off the lead and in a three-way tie for second, the 54-year-old had plenty of competition around him, but a solid front-nine put him tied for the lead with first-round leader Russell Humphrey making the turn. Haag fired a two-under-par 34 on front-nine thanks in large part to some great scrambling.
2013 NCGA Master Division Champion: Randy HaagAfter making birdies on Nos. 2 and 4, Haag’s adventures began on the sixth hole when he got up-and-down out of the bunker. Then on the par-5 seventh, he found trouble again by hitting into the lake, but fortuitously saved par by sinking a long putt. On the eighth after hitting his tee shot under the trees down the right side of the fairway, Haag was able to get a green in regulation—to his surprise—for a two-putt par.
“I hit a couple errant shots that I recovered nicely from,” said Haag. “I was really making some pars where I probably deserved some bogeys.”
On the back-nine Haag fired a two-over par 38, which included two birdies, two bogeys and a double bogey, yet despite posting an over-par score he was able to outlast his competitors.
“It wasn’t a very clean round of golf,” said Haag, who admitted he was a little surprised that even-par won the event.
2013 Winners: Randy Haag (champion), Casey Boyns, Russell Humphrey and Jamie Looper (runner-ups).Humphrey, who started the day with a two-shot lead, had an even-par 36 on the front-nine, but a four-over par 40 on the front-nine.
“I just didn’t play well late [in the round] today,” said Humphrey, who went five-over par the last seven holes.
Humphrey finished with a 36-hole total of 146, two-over par to finish in a three-way tie for second place with former champions Casey Boyns (2007) and Jamie Looper (2008). Boyns, playing in the penultimate group was awarded the second place medal via a scorecard playoff. His final round one-under par 71 was one of just three under-par scores yielded by Spyglass Hill on Tuesday. Looper, who was in that three-way tie for second place going into today’s final round, posted a two-over par 74 Tuesday with three birdies, three bogeys and a double bogey.
Three players tied for fifth at 147, three-over par: Steve Sear, Jeff Wilson and Dale Bouguennec. In a three-way tie for eighth place at 148, four-over par to round out the top 10 were John Jaramillo, Michael Lee and Chris Miller. Defending champion Jim Knoll finished tied for 49th place at 159, 15-over par.