Spannuth and Merrull win Georgia State Four Ball

ALBANY, Ga. – Wes Spannuth of Brunswick and Corey Murrell of Kingsland shot a 9-under-par 63 in the final round and finished at 20-under 196 to win the 39th annual Georgia Four-Ball Championship by three shots over Valdosta’s Nic Daugharty and Tifton’s Casey Willis. The championship event took place at Doublegate Country Club, April 23-25. Cartersville-duo Chase Jones and Jayce Stepp finished tied for third position at 16-under 200 with Kyle Harper of Hartwell and Greg Kennedy of Duluth. Adam Thomas of Baxley and his partner, Dave Womack of McDonough, finished tied for fifth with Steve and Carter Collins, a father-son tandem who posted three consecutive rounds of 67, the 2006 champions, Doug Hanzel of Savannah and Bob Royak of Alpharetta, and Jack Hall of Sea Island and Savannah’s Danny Nelson. Spencer Davis and Craig Taylor, the leaders entering the final round, posted a two-over 74 in the final round to fall into a tie for ninth position overall with Kevin Jordan of Smyrna and Mark Strickland of Woodstock. Going into the final round, Spannuth and Murrell found themselves four strokes off the leaders pace. After making birdie on the second hole of the day, the tandem strung together seven pars to make the turn at one-under. “We just sort of scratched out a bunch of pars,” Spannuth said of their front-nine performance. “We weren’t really hitting the ball well at all. We knew that we had to turn it on during the back nine in order to have any chance at making a run at the title.” Spannuth and Murrell, playing in their first GSGA-sanctioned event together, did just that on the inward nine – connecting on a remarkable eight birdies, including one on each of their final four holes, to card 28 for the side and finish at nine-under-par for the day. The only hole that the team didn’t birdie was the 444-yard 14th, where they made par. “I couldn’t believe what we were doing,” Murrell explained of the duo’s performance on the back nine. “It just seemed like every putt we stood over was makable. What a neat way to win!” Doublegate Country Club played to 7,000 yards for the final round. The field of 58 teams was cut to the low 40 and ties after 36 holes, with the cut falling at one-under-par 143 and exactly 40 teams advancing to the final round. Entries were open to two-man teams of male amateur golfers who are GSGA members. Founded in 1916, the Georgia State Golf Association (GSGA) received its official charter on June 24, 1924. Since that date, the GSGA has grown to one of the largest state amateur golf associations in the country, with over 350 member clubs and 85,000 individual members. With a mission to promote and preserve amateur golf in the state of Georgia, GSGA offers a computerized handicapping service, course rating and measuring, and annually conducts a full schedule of statewide competitions for men and women of all age groups. Other services include a summer-long junior sectional program, award-winning Golf Georgia magazine, membership recognition and rewards programs and a charitable foundation administering two college scholarship programs.

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