Maxwell, Futch defend Spring Pilgrimage championship

Published 9:39 am Monday, March 26, 2007

Frank Maxwell and Johnny Futch of Delhi, La., made sure there would be no playoff as they successfully defended their Spring Pilgrimage 4-Ball championship.

Maxwell and Futch, who defeated Bill Byrne and Rob Smith on the first playoff hole to win last year’s tournament, shot an astonishing 12-under-par 60 Sunday afternoon at Beau Pré Country Club to finish with a two-day score of 123 and a nine-shot win.

Astonishing because they did this on the black (championship) tees. A round like that on those tees at Beau Pré is supposed to be impossible. But Maxwell and Futch made it look too easy.

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“Today, everything went right. We just had great partnership,” Maxwell said. “Johnny’s been putting well. It’s easy to hit shots when you have a partner like Johnny.”

Actually, Maxwell made most of the team’s eight birdies and two shots that were simply amazing. On No. 9, a par-4 hole, Maxwell holed out for an eagle-2 with a 7-iron from 165 yards. That shot allowed the winning team to shoot a front-nine, 7-under 29.

“It probably bounced once, checked up and rolled about 12 feet,” Maxwell said.

On the par-3 13th hole, Maxwell made the tournament’s second hole-in-one of the weekend, also with a 7-iron from 162 yards out. Along with Futch, first-round leaders Jason Albritton and Tommy Langlois of Zachary, La., witnessed Maxwell’s ace.

“I never saw it go in the hole,” Maxwell said. His ace allowed he and Futch to go to 11-under-par and the championship was theirs for the second year in a row.

John Davis and Eddie Meche of Lafayette, La., shot a 7-under 65 to finish in second place in the championship flight with a two-day score of 132.

“John Davis made the majority of the putts to day,” Meche said. “Bogey-free round, that was a good thing. We just knew we had to play exceptionally well. I helped on a few holes when he got in trouble.”

As for Albritton and Langlois, they struggled on Sunday and ended up shooting an even-par 72, yet still managed to finish in third place with a two-day total of 134.

Shane Humphries and David Sinclair had the low round of the first flight with a final-round score of 6-under 66 to finish at 136, but ended up in a tie for first place with Dale Cagnolatti and Gerald Tonore, who shot a 5-under 67.

Two teams from Natchez wound up in a tie for first place in the second flight. Bill Byrne and Jay Lessley fired a 5-under 67 while Chad Huber and Kurt Russ shot a 7-under 65 as both teams finished with a two-day score of 139.

“It was all my partner, Jay Lessley,” Byrne said. “I just rode around and told him ‘good shot’. We had five birdies. Jay shot 3-under on his own ball. He was superb. We had a real bad day yesterday.”

Russ said he and Huber’s round was a team effort.

“We played an outstanding round of golf today,” Huber said. “We played the first bogey-free round of my career today. We complimented each other very well. We never struggled to make par.”