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Clutch shot in playoff wins Fourball

Ryan Bina struck his short chip shot perfectly on Saturday, and after he made contact the ball rolled directly toward the hole.

Steve Newman and Tracy Chamberlin guessed the shot was in even before then. They watched how confidently Bina approached the ball and figured he would probably sink it.

Bina's 12-foot chip-in on the first playoff hole gave him and partner Vance Holtzman the Wichita Golf Association City Fourball title over Newman and Chamberlin at Wichita Country Club. Both teams finished with four-round scores of 267.

"You've got to hand it to him for chipping it in," Chamberlin said. "He stepped up like he was going to do it, too. He didn't even think about it, he just stepped up and knocked it in."

Both teams entered Sunday one stroke behind leaders Eddie Sanchez Jr. and Connor McHenry. But Bina and Holtzman played most consistently of the teams in contention.

Among the top five finishers, only Bina and Holtzman played bogey-free on Sunday. Their most important shots were Bina's eagle on No. 9 after he reached the green in two shots and a birdie by Holtzman on No. 18 that essentially forced the playoff.

"We had two bogeys for four rounds of golf between us, and that's really good," Bina said. "Last year we got second, and we would have been in the hunt last year if we didn't have so many bogeys. That's what we concentrated on, making few bogeys and trying to take advantage of the opportunities we had."

Newman and Chamberlin, three-time champions, were in position to win after making birdie on six of the first 14 holes.

But a bogey on No. 15 dropped them into a virtual tie for the lead, and they were the only team among the top five to not birdie one of the final three holes.

Newman missed a long birdie putt before Bina's chip-in. Bina managed birdie after his drive went into the rough and his approach shot was short of the green.

"These guys, Newman and Chamberlin, are always at the top of the leaderboard in Wichita," Holtzman said. "They're great players and we knew we had our work cut out for us."

Bina and Holtzman became friends after Bina's wife was maid of honor in Holtzman's wedding. Holtzman played at Kansas and has been playing in Wichita events since the mid-1990s.

Bina, from Hillsboro, didn't make the team at Kansas State after trying to walk-on but stuck with the game.

They became the first first-time City Four-Ball champion since Corey Novascone and Chris Swyers won in 2005. Novascone and Swyers finished eighth this year and round-three leaders Sanchez and McHenry were one shot back after a 68 on Sunday.

Both Bina and Holtzman provided heroics, with Holtzman rolling in a 15-foot birdie putt on No. 18 about 30 minutes before Holtzman's winning chip.

"Like I said all week, I had a great partner," Holtzman said. "He was in jail (after the errant drive on No. 18), but I knew he would come through. I wasn't surprised at all to see (the chip) go in."

Championship Flight at Wichita Country Club

Final results

1. Bina-Holtzman 267 (won on first playoff hole), 2. Newman-Chamberlin 267, 3. Sanchez Jr.-McHenry 268, 4. Cusick-Stevens 270, T5. Potter-Smith and Jones-Soyes 271, 7. Copp-Jolliffe 272, 8. Novascone-Swyers 274, 9. A.Carney-J.Carney 275, T10. Campbell-Bannon and Alefs-Rothwell 277, 12. Lagaly-Voth 278, 13. Gordon-Goss 283, T14. Cassamento-Hubbell and Schoonover-Shauner 285, 16. Logan-Doerflinger 292.

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