(Joe Leonard & Bob Hornung Jr.)
One of the best Wisconsin PGA traditions made its annual appearance on the WPGA calendar of events on Monday. Over 70 WPGA professionals would travel to South Hills G&CC for the 52nd playing of the Hornung’s Classic. Once again the day was filled with plenty of camaraderie and competition.
The 18-hole stroke play would be another tightly contested event. With breezy and sunny conditions an emphasis would be on solid ball striking.
Not surprisingly, two familiar names and good ball strikers would find their way to the top of the leaderboard. Joe Leonard and Ryan Helminen would each card a 3-under-par 68 in regulation. Their rounds would be very similar, as they both would have five birdies and two bogeys.
With player of the year points on the line and approximately $400 more going to the winner, the duo would settle the tie with a hole-by-hole playoff. The playoff holes were the par-4 first and eighteenth. They would open the playoff by matching each other shot for shot over the course of three holes. They would go par, birdie, par.
An opening for Leonard would appear on the fourth playoff hole. After missing the fairway to the right, Helminen was forced to find the green after his third shot. For Leonard he knocked his second shot to approximately 15 feet. His smoothly struck birdie putt would find the bottom of the cup and deliver him the win.
The victory marked Leonard’s fourth WPGA one-day classic win in the past seven years.
Finishing in a tie for third was Eddie Terasa and Steven Young. The twosome came up just one shot short of Leonard and Helminen. For Terasa the score would be good enough to earn low senior honors.
As always the WPGA and our professionals would like to express our appreciation to Hornung’s Golf Products and the Hornung family. Their commitment to the day and to the section is something very special.
The Wisconsin PGA would like to again thank South Hills G&CC and their membership. The course was in terrific shape and the club takes great pride in hosting this annual event.