Web.com Tour veteran Jeff Klauk has enjoyed enough success at Crestview Country Club over the years that he hasn’t really needed a helping hand.
But that’s the nature of the Scholfield Shootout, the Air Capital Classic kickoff event that pairs tour pros with local club pros in a scramble format.
Klauk, the 2003 tournament champion, had the good fortune Monday of drawing Wichita Country Club pro Cary Cozby. Cozby, who helped former Wichita State golfer Dustin Garza win the shootout two years ago, did the same for Klauk with a closest-to-the-pin bunker shot on the 18th hole that gave them the victory over tour pro Josh Broadaway and Terradyne’s Greg Bray.
Derby’s Woody Austin and Web.com rookie and WSU graduate Ryan Spears were among seven tour pros who played in the six-hole shootout. Neither was able to make it to the final hole like Klauk, Broadaway and their playing partners.
After both teams birdied the par-5 closing hole, each competitor hit a greenside bunker shot to decide the outcome. Cozby went first, placing his shot seven feet past the hole. None of the others came closer, although Broadaway’s attempt was just inches farther from the hole than Cozby’s.
“I didn’t think we had it at first,” said Klauk, who pocketed $800 in the seven-team competition, a laid-back affair in which spectators walk the fairways with the golfers. “Cary was a good partner.”
Cozby played in the evening event after playing with Wichita Country Club director of instruction Josh Cook in the 36-hole South Central PGA Section Team Championship at Reflection Ridge.
He was the last to arrive to the 10th tee, the starting hole. But he quickly made his presence felt, rolling in a 25-footer for the shootout’s first birdie.
“We have a lot of members and friends who come out to this, and it gets the juices going,” Cozby said. “These guys (the tour pros) are just having fun. We’re trying to do something to help them out.”
Fans were treated to some good shot-making – Austin hit the flagstick from the left rough on his first approach shot – and the event’s signature light-hearted fun.
Tour pro Michael Sims did the “Harlem Shake” with musical accompaniment while Broadaway prepared to hit his tee shot on the 11th hole.
Three teams were eliminated after three holes, including Spears and playing partner Jim Elliott of Willowbend. Klauk kept his team alive on the fourth hole by defeating Web.com pro Jason Gore in a chip-off. After Austin and partner Brad Kipper bogeyed the par-3 17th, Klauk and Cozby overcame Broadaway reaching the 520-yard hole in two shots.
“Jeff’s a super guy,” Cozby said. “I knew a little bit about his story just by watching the Golf Channel and those types of things. When you’re away a year and a half or two years from something that you make your living at, that’s really something.”
Thompson survives Monday qualifier – Former University of Kansas golfer Chris Thompson shot a 4-under-par 68 at Auburn Hills to earn one of 12 Monday qualifying spots into the Air Capital Classic.
Thompson, an Independence native who lives in Lawrence, last played in the tournament in 2008. He tied for second in the Auburn Hills qualifier behind former Oklahoma State golfer Trent Whitekiller, who shot a 67.
Jeff Kellen of Rockford, Ill., and Travis Woolf of Fort Worth fired 5-under 67s to share medalist honors at Newton’s Sand Creek Station.
At Auburn Hills, Par 72
Trent Whitekiller, Sallisaw, Okla., 67; Michael Smith, Lafayette, La., 68; Chris Thompson, Lawrence, 68; Scott Pinckney, Scottsdale, Ariz., 68; Peter Malnati, Dandridge, Tenn., 68; Jace Moore, Keller, Texas, 68.
At Sand Creek Station, Newton, Par 72
Jeffrey Kellen, Rockford, Ill., 67; Travis Woolf, Fort Worth, 67; Jace Long, Dixon, Mo., 68; Justin Bardgett, Chesterfield, Mo., 68; Nick Delio, Valencia, Calif., 68; Hudson Johnson, Longview, Texas, 68.
At Crestview North
1. Jeff Klauk-Cary Cozby, $800; 2. Josh Broadaway-Greg Bray, $500; 3. Woody Austin-Brad Kipper, $350; 4. Jason Gore-Jonathan May, $250; 5. (tie) Andres Gonzales-Lee Johnson; Michael Sims-Keith Gunter and Ryan Spears-Jim Elliott, $200.