Xander Schauffele and Dean Wilson win The Wishbone Brawl
20 Nov 2021
by AmateurGolf.com Staff

John Ashworth and his teams at both Linksoul and Goat Hill Park have brought us some amazing experiences over the years, both on and off the course.

The Wishbone Brawl, a charity event held at Goat Hill Park, always brings out the best in California golf to raise money and have fun, all while playing persimmon woods at the par-65 layout that has undergone a transformation that started with Ashworth and friends' "Save Goat Hill Park" campaign. This year's event -- with Lefty's successor as the new golf king of San Diego, Xander Schauffele and Masters champ Fred Couples headlining -- sold out quickly.

All proceeds this year benefitted North County Junior Golf, an organization that Ashworth competed in as a youth and which calls Goat Hill Park home.

In front of a "no-ropes" gallery of hundreds, Couples drew first blood, with a straight-in 20-foot birdie putt at the first hole. But Schauffele and Wilson were tough. The Olympics gold medalist's partner Wilson plays Goat Hill often, and his local knowledge showed at the 5th hole, where he wedged in for an ace. The shot landed three feet left of the hole, and then curled like a breaking 3-footer as the crowd literally "went wild."

Couples' putter stayed hot, keeping his team in the match with a couple of mid-range birdie efforts, including one on the par-3 7th. But heading to the 17th team, he and current course record holder Kropp -- a PGA Latinoamerica Tour winner who also teaches at "The Goat" -- were two down and left with just one chance.

That chance, a 30-foot straight downhill putt for Kropp, was drilled into the back of the cup as Couples big smile widened and the crowd was again treated to another big moment. These Tour players proved themselves human on several occasions over the tricky layout, but they showed their stuff at the big moments.

On No. 18, both Kropp and Couples had chances to tie; when they missed the match went to the "regulars" -- Schauffele and Wilson.

Matt Ginella of The Fire Pit Collective joked that for the first time in history, an Olympic Gold medal and Wishbone Brawl title were captured by the same player.

As for Couples, the first-time Wishbone Brawl contestant and longtime friend of John Ashworth, he seemed to enjoy every part of the day.

"I plan to come back next year," said the always popular Masters champ. "You were a great crowd, staying with us for all 18 holes. We play in a lot of these, and people usually start to dwindle after the 10th hole."

Rewatch the live stream below:

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