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Aikens, Parziale Close Out International Four-Ball
Herbie Aikens (L) and Matt Parziale finished it off at Mayacoo Lakes<br>(Kipp Schulties Golf Design photo)
Herbie Aikens (L) and Matt Parziale finished it off at Mayacoo Lakes
(Kipp Schulties Golf Design photo)

WEST PALM BEACH, FL (February 14, 2018) - U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Matt Parziale (Brockton, MA) and partner Herbie Aikens (Kingston, MA) shot a 4-under 67 at Mayacoo Lakes Country Club to cap off a five-shot win the International Four-Ball Championship.

It was a comfortable final round for the New England duo, who started the final round five ahead and were never seriously threatened.

The defending champions, Mike McCoy and Gene Elliott of W. Des Moines, IA, also shot a final-round 67 and finished in second, where they were after each round of the championship.

After Aikens and Parziale had a six-shot lead at the turn, McCoy and Elliott picked up shots on the next two holes, including the 11th where the leaders suffered their only bogey of the tournament.

But Aikens and Parziale responded with birdies on the next two holes to put the tournament out of reach. The winning total was 18-under-par 197.

Their performance this week continues a pattern of good play in four-ball events. They have won the Massachusetts Four-Ball in both 2016 and 2017, and have played in the last two U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championships.

There was a tie for third place at 10 under between the teams of Mike Sullivan /Jeff Walker and Shawn Baker / Jim Scorse.

The low round of the day was a 6-under 65 turned in by Brian Komline and John Olsen, who finished eighth.

In the Senior Division, Doug Hanzel (Savannah, GA) and Buzz Fly (Memphis, TN) fought off a challenge from Keith Decker (Martinsville, VA) and Matt Sughrue (Arlington, VA) to win by two shots.

Hanzel and Fly took a five shot lead into the final round, and extended their lead with a birdie on the first hole while Decker and Sughrue fell seven behind with a bogey. But the two-time defending champions made a comeback, going 6 under over 6 holes to close out the front nine, and when the leaders bogeyed the 10th hole, the lead was just two.

It shrank to one after a Decker / Sughrue birdie at the par-five 13th, but that turned out to be their last birdie of the day and they could get no closer. Hanzel and Fly birdied the 16th and then parred in for a two-shot win. The winning total was 18-under 197.

Michael Mercier / John Kircher and Jerry Rose / Jim Lehman tied for third at 13 under par.

In the Legends Division, Van Lefferdink and Steve Earsley completed a wire-to-wire win over Joe Keller and Joe Quillinan, closing with a 69 for a 4-under 211 winning total.

This was the 62nd playing of the International Four-Ball Championship. After being played at the Fox Club in Palm City in recent years, the tournament searched for a home before settling on the three-course rotation of Old Palm, Banyan Cay and Mayacoo Lakes.

ABOUT THE International Four-Ball

Started in 1957, the International Four-Ball is one of the most prestigious amateur events in the country. The Championship includes Mid-Amateur (ages 25-54), Senior (ages 55-64) and Legends (ages 65 and up) Divisions. All divisions compete in a Four- Ball Stroke Play format which is contested over 3 days and 54 holes. This prestigious event has a rich history, with past champions such as Jack Nicklaus, Deane Beman, Dick Siderowf, Vinnie Giles, Jim Holtgrieve and Downing Gray.

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