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  • Writer's pictureRichard Hendershot

Definitely worth the wait? Bautista Captures the Wildwood Open.

Austin Bautista of Clearwater, FL drove to the championship as an alternate willing to wait and see if there was a chance someone would no show or withdraw at the last minute. He waited from 7am until noon when all scheduled competitors had checked in. Things were looking pretty grim.

The field, which was sold out had no late withdraws, but a decision was made by the Tournament committee to reward the player who was willing to wait all morning for a chance to play by adding him to the last pairing.

That player was Austin Bautista, he opened with a -6 under par 66 leaving him trailing round one leader John Langhoff by four strokes.

Austin finished his round along with two other players, Seth Fair and Jeff Sorenson all in the clubhouse at -12 under. Overnight leader John Langhoff, after an unbelievable up and down at the par 3 17th for par held a one shot lead heading to the final hole. After a good tee-shot Langhoff’s second shot to #18 left him with a very long approach putt which came up a bit short. A miss for par and the four players were headed back to the par 3 17th for sudden death. Fair could only make bogey after his shot ended up in the water, Sorenson had already assured himself with par, Bautista had a very long curling downhill putt fro the back of the green, and Langhoff was looking at a 10 footer for birdie. Bautista made his long downhill putt for birdie leaving Langhoff a chance to extend the play-off. His putt slid by and the rest is history. Austin Bautista is the Champion. He picked up the $5000 first place check for his victory.


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