Greenbrier notebook: Another close miss for Bradshaw
For the second straight year, the Resort at Glade Springs has turned out to be anything but a pleasant experience for six-time West Virginia Open winner David Bradshaw.
After falling in a five-way playoff for the final qualifying spot in last year's Greenbrier Classic qualifier on the Cobb Course, lightning hit Bradshaw again Monday as he was ousted in a six-way sudden-death situation this year.
Four golfers earned their way into the PGA tournament field in an event delayed for around two hours by rain on Monday.
Two-time PGA Tour winner Rod Pampling fired the low round of the day with an 8-under-par 64 to earn a berth into this week's Classic and was joined by Garrett Frank (65), Steve Allan (66) and Andre Stolz (67).
Stolz emerged from the tangled mess for fourth, eliminating Bradshaw and two-time State Open winner John Ross on the second playoff hole. He also bested Bryan Bigley, Michael Maness and Len Mattiace, finally earning the last spot after four holes.
Five-time State Open champion Brad Westfall posted a 71, falling four shots out. Meanwhile 2005 State Open titlist Craig Berner of Scott Depot, as well as former Concord golfer and current assistant coach Darcy Donaldson, each finished at even-par 72.
Other local finishers included Hurricane's Brian Anania at 74.
While the Greenbrier Classic is not a major championship in its own right, it may have serious implications on who gets into this year's PGA Championship.
This week's Classic is the last chance for tournament players to crack the top 70 money winners, all of whom get exemptions into the year's final major. That list started with last year's Bridgestone Invitational.
The Classic could also help players into or out of next week's Bridgestone Invitational as the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking through the end of the Classic earn an exemption.
The winner of this year's Greenbrier Classic also gets an exemption into the PGA Championship and the Bridgestone.
With numerous players getting into and pulling out of the Classic Field on Monday, Matt Weibring is now on deck.
Weibring is currently listed as the first alternate to get into the field should someone else choose not to play between now and Thursday.
The name should sound a bit familiar to golf fans as his father, D.A. Weibring, won five events on both the PGA and Champions Tours and registered five top-10 finishes in majors between 1985-1988.
Matt Weibring has played four events this year on the Tour, making the cut just once.
Nine PGA Tour winners in 2011 are scheduled to play in the Greenbrier Classic.
That list consists of: Keegan Bradley, HP Byron Nelson Championship; Michael Bradley, Puerto Rico Open; Jonathan Byrd, Hyundai Tournament of Champions; Chris Kirk, Viking Classic; Phil Mickelson, Shell Houston Open; D.A. Points, AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am; Brandt Snedeker, RBC Heritage; Johnson Wagner, Mayakoba Golf Classic; and Gary Woodland, Transitions Championship.
Either Mickelson or Tom Watson could claim some serious bragging rights with a win this weekend - and we're not just talking a Greenbrier Classic win.
The two are tied for ninth on the all-time Tour wins list with Cary Middlecoff at 39, the most of any players in the Greenbrier Classic Field. Davis Love III with 20, Kenny Perry 14, and Justin Leonard with 12 are the only other players in double figures.
If D.A. Points, Jimmy Walker, or Tom Gillis pulls out the win at the Greenbrier Classic, it wouldn't be the first time one of the three has had success in West Virginia.
Each won the Nationwide Tour event held at the Pete Dye Golf Club in Bridgeport between 2004-2009.
The Greenbrier Classic is attempting to make more use of technology this year. Fans can get updates throughout the tournament sent to their phones by texting "classic" to 888777.
Reach Ryan Pritt at 304-348-7948 or ryan.pr...@wvgazette.com.