Sam Hall of Indianapolis, put himself in position on the first day with a 77 in very wind and cold conditions to be tied for the lead with Kevin Stone. Chasing Hall and Stone on the second day were players like our two-time winner Alec Davis who was only two shots back to start the round.
Hall got off to a rocky start bringing in the rest of the field with bogeys on his first two opening holes and with the Univ. of Miami (Ohio) coach watching him.
"I was a little bit nervous because the conditions were bad, and I wasn't sure if I'd be playing my best," Hall said. "Honestly, in the bad conditions, I just wanted to trust my driver and aim for the middle of the green on my approach shots. I just wanted to focus from shot-to-shot and make sure I made good swings."
Hall was an experienced player who knew that there was still a lot of golf left to play.
On the No. 7 dogleg Par 4, Hall made birdie to get back one of those bogeys that gave the field hope. It gave him plenty of momentum heading to No. 9, the short par 5 where Hall made a tap-in birdie to get back to even.
While other players chasing crumbled in the cold and windy conditions, Davis brought his "A" game as he was even for the day and putting plenty of pressure on Hall with only five holes to play. Hall saw the updated leaderboard and knew he was all tied up heading into the par 5 16th hole (shotgun start).
"I knew that Alec (Davis) was going to play well today. I wanted to at least push him a little bit because I knew he'd see the leaderboard too. It definitely gave me some extra motivation down the stretch," Hall said.
Hall hit a crushing drive and managed his game to put himself just short of the green in two shots. An easy up and down for birdie, he now was back up one shot.
On the daunting Par 3 17th, Hall hit a mid iron to 20 feet above the hole and made the sliding putt to all but seal the victory.
Hall recalled the action saying, "I thought I had the perfect club. I knew what I wanted to hit. I was feeling it after that birdie."
Hall shot an impressive plus-one (73) onthe second day to win by four shots.
"I feel blessed just to get a chance to play this fall. I learned that pars can win just as well as low rounds. I know now I can make the putts even under pressure," said Hall.