ZIONSVILLE, IN (August 3, 2006) -- Ford, a senior at Marian College, had to defeat fellow Marian teammate Jacob Murray in the semi-finals match on Wednesday. Bell bested Todd Palmer 2&1 during the semi-finals match.
In the final match, Bell went one-up on the first hole as Ford took double bogey six, but was never able to get beyond one up in the match as he parried between all-square, one up and one down on the front nine.
Bell’s play on the second hole from one of the tough bunkers of Wolf Run left his second shot on the par three to just past the pin and slightly off the green. The opportunity for Ford to go back to all-square was lost when Bell chipped in for his par.
A bad tee shot for Bell on the third hole left another opening for Ford to get back a hole. Bell was forced to take an unplayable lie from the tall grass, though Ford nearly lost the opportunity when he hit his second shot left into the trees. Able to get the third on the green, Ford aggressively went past the hole his first putt, but then made the five-footer coming back for par. Bell’s unplayable penalty gave him bogey and loss of the hole and the lead.
Bell birdied hole #4 with a one putt to go back to one up, but a bogey on the fifth produced an all square match once more.
Ford won the last two holes of the front nine to make the turn at +2. The eighth saw a spectacular shot from the greenside bunker for Ford to within inches of the hole to save par, while Bell three putted for bogey.
After making the turn, Ford eagled the par five tenth to go to +3. Both players faced an approach to the green from a depression near a drainage pipe; Ford there in two, Bell there in three. Bell chipped first just over the ridge to the green and watched as his ball rolled down the slope to the hole. Ford was awarded relief as his ball sat on the pipe, though his drop rolled back toward the pipe twice. The second drop was in play, but not more than a few inches from the pipe and on a downslope. The read from Bell’s chip gave Ford an edge as he chipped in for eagle three.
Bell managed to get back to just two down on the par three 13th when Ford took double bogey after taking two stokes to get out of the deep greenside bunker.
Ford stayed at two up through the 16th when the match was dormie at 2&2, both players carding pars on #14, #15 and #16.
Ford sank a birdie putt on #17 to put the match away at 3 up with 1 left to play and to become the 2006 IGA Match Play Champion.
For complete match play results, click on the tournament link above.