Willmar's Jacobson is repeat winner at KX4/Bank of West Amateur Golf Tournament
MOORHEAD, Minn. - Although he refers to it as 'a fun little getaway,' Andy Jacobson doesn't appear ready to hand over his KX4/Bank of the West Amateur Golf Tournament crown any time soon.
Jacobson defeated Fargo South High School graduate and Drake University recruit Ben Freeman on the first playoff hole Sunday at Moorhead Country Club to become the first repeat winner of the tournament since David Schultz in 2003 and '04.
"The shish kabobs will be on the grill once again," said Jacobson, an insurance agent from Willmar, Minn., who shot a 4-under 68. "I love it."
Jacobson began the day three strokes behind first-round leader Mark Sorenson.
However, Sorenson collapsed on the back nine Sunday to open the door for a charging Jacobson and Freeman. Sorenson, who shot an even-par 72 during the first round, finished the tournament 7-over.
Jacobson's only hiccup was a bogey on No. 10 immediately after turning in a bogey-free, front-nine 34.
Jacobson lipped out a four-foot put on the 18th green that would have ended his round at 5-under.
Instead, his 68 put him in a tie for first place as Freeman hit the tee box on No. 18.
"I didn't think I lost because 17 and 18 aren't the easiest 'gimme' pars," Jacobson said.
Freeman drilled his approach shot on No. 18 to about 15 feet from the cup.
His birdie putt trickled a few centimeters right of the hole, and he tapped in for par force a playoff.
Disgusted with his putting the entire tournament, Freeman lined up the putt again as spectators scrambled to check the leaderboard.
This time he nailed it.
"I just wasn't comfortable at all standing over the ball," said Freeman, who carded a 2-under 70. "I don't know what it was. I hit the ball really well both days. But, for the most part, the speed on my putts was awful."
In the playoff, Freeman hit his tee shot into the rough and chunked his approach into the front side bunker on No. 1.
He then sailed his shot from the bunker about 20 feet past the cup.
Jacobson chipped his second shot from the fringe to within 5 feet of the hole.
Freeman's par putt rimmed out. Jacobson's did not.
"Unfortunately for Ben, the putt he hit didn't drop," Jacobson said. "It was good for me because my putt was the same length as the one I had on 18. I just had to step up and prove to myself I could make a putt under pressure."
Readers can reach Forum reporter Heath Hotzler at (701) 241-5562.