H-S Classic: Balky putter costs Moore; Gaddy cruises into quarters
Because of what he’d seen all day, John Gaddy held out little hope of surviving the 18th hole on Thursday.
Locked in a tight battle with Meghan Moore in match play at the 67th Herald-Sun Golf Classic, Gaddy trailed by a hole and needed help to keep his tournament alive.
He got it.
Moore missed a 15-foot birdie putt, which opened the door for Gaddy. He chipped onto the green and sank his birdie putt, forcing a playoff.
“I was shocked that she missed that putt because she made everything she looked at,” Gaddy said of the 18th hole. “But I knew I had to make birdie.”
On the first extra hole — the par 4 No. 1 — Moore’s normally reliable putter failed her again as she three-putted for bogey. Gaddy made par to advance to today’s Championship Flight quarterfinals.
“She’s an incredible putter ...,” Gaddy said. “Unfortunate break on that last hole. Great player. She knows her strengths well.”
A former Northern High golfer who played collegiately at East Carolina and UNC Pembroke — in 2012 she became Pembroke’s first Division II all-America — Moore rallied to take the lead after Gaddy was 2-up following the first nine holes.
She won hole No. 10 and Gaddy followed with a win on 11 to restore his two-hole lead.
But Moore kept the heat on, sinking a long birdie putt on 12 to cut into Gaddy’s lead again.
On the par 4 13th, Gaddy overshot the green on his second shot. After chipping onto the green, he missed his par putt, allowing Moore to pull even.
Gaddy’s birdie putt on 14 restored his one-hole lead before the two split the 15th.
On the par 4 16th, Moore appeared in trouble when her second shot landed in the bunker in front of the hole. But a beautiful wedge shot left her in position to save par. When Gaddy three-putted, Moore was even once again.
On the par 3 17th, both players missed the green to the right off the tee. But Moore’s 10-foot par putt found the hole while Gaddy missed and Moore was 1-up heading to 18.
Moore had a win within her grasp but missed that birdie putt.
“I don’t know what happened,” she said. “I misread it a little bit. I don’t know. I made some good putts out there today, so I can’t really complain.”
On the playoff hole, Moore left her birdie putt short before her par putt lipped out and Gaddy won.
“If it goes past the hole pretty good you could go off the green,” Moore said of her birdie try. “I was just trying to lay it up there but I didn’t hit it hard enough.”
The only woman in the field, Moore was playing from tees that are longer than she normally would play. Still, she defeated No. 4 seed Travis Byrd 5 and 3 on Wednesday’s first day of match play.
“I’m pretty happy with the way I played,” Moore said. “The golf course is really long for me. I had a lot of long irons and woods. Overall, I played pretty good.”
Gaddy advances into the quarterfinals to play former Trinity School of Durham and Chapel Hill star Todd Eckstein — now at Davidson — who defeated Riverside High’s Harry Schrickx Jr. 6 and 5 on Thursday.
Defending tournament champion Ronnie Williams saw his bid for a second consecutive Herald-Sun Classic title and third overall end on Thursday. Dalton Rich beat Williams 3 and 2 to reach the quarterfinals.
Rich will play Jay Robinson today.
Rich took control of his match with Williams early, scoring birdies on three of the first five holes to take a four-hole lead.
“I got off to a good start,” Rich said. “From there he battled back and never gave up. It was a good match.”
Williams pulled within two holes after 12 holes and was still within two holes on No. 15. But an errant tee shot on No. 16 hurt his chances. Rich scored a par on the hole to close it out.
Herald-Sun Golf Classic
Dalton Rich d. Ronnie Williams Jr. 3&2
Jay Robinson d. Jonathan Price 4&2
John Gaddy d. Meghan Moore 1-up (19 holes)
Todd Eckstein d. Harry Schrickx Jr. 6&5
Ashley Berry d. Chris Winters 2&1
Tim Garrett d. Stephen Lavenets 2&1
Jeff Robinson d. Taylor Peel 2&1
Kevin Cheek d. Justin Avila 1-up
Michael Huff d. Michael Frye 2&1
Abe Lewis d. Stephen Kuenzli 1-up (20)
Andrew Hanna d. Chris Outland 3&2
Doug Baker d. Ryan Thompson 2&1
Clay Watkins d. Jimmy King 1-up (20)
Allen Smith d. Brett Lewis 1-up
Newt Barringer d. Gary Newcomb 5&4
Macon Tunstall (bye)
Kent Farrell d. Stephen Grossman 3&1
Jeff Warren d. Shane Synan 4&3
Charles Hooker d. Mike Beaumont 4&3
Destin Barnes d. Nick Locantore 2&1
David Perry d. Fritz Hine 1-up
Cecil Lockley d. Michael Avila 5&4
Nathan Freeman d. Jimmie Kerr 7&6
Sterling Bryant (bye)
Brad Pittman d. Phillip Ray 2&1
John Synan d. Cliff Beasley 4&2
Chris McDonald d. Mike Kincaid 7&6
Greg Byrd d. Lonnie Browning 7&5
Eddie Ball d. Khaddafy Thomas 1-up
John Pittman d. Jeff Johnson 6&5
John Naillon d. Tim Simpson 1-up
Tim King (bye)
Mike Hall d. Craig Fielding 6&4
Richard Wagner d. Chris Quinn 5&4
George Farlow d. John Tomkovick 2-up
Noah Constantine d. Daryl Naillon 8&6
Richard Penny d. Carl Outland 3&2
Corey Johnson d. Doug Hall Jr. 5&4
Chad Bryant d. Oren Stuchiner 1-up (19)
Buddy Brown (bye)
Keith Johnson d. Brian Stewart 1-up
David Thomas d. Edward Musselman 5&4
Clark Green d. Hershal Stephenson 2&1
Joe Gucker d. Dwight Honeycutt 3&2
Danny Bailey d. Todd Blalock 4&3
Brad Young d. Charles Sims 4&2
Jasiel de Oliveira d. Tommy Parker 3&2
Dennis Perry (bye)
Cliff Cox d. Scott Penny 5&4
Eddie Carden d. Jimmy Davis (N/A)
Cedell Alexander d. Gary Sunderland 6&5
Robbie Robinson d. Charles Salmon 4&3
Gary Wheeley d. Doug Best Jr. 6&5
Gary Chambers d. Duane Wallace 2&1
Casey Ellis d. Jason Warren 6&5
8 a.m.—Gary Chambers vs. Casey Ellis
8 a.m.—Robbie Robinson vs. Gary Wheeley
8:08—Dennis Perry vs. Cliff Cox
8:08—Eddie Carden vs. Cedell Alexander
8:16—David Thomas vs. Clark Green
8 a.m.—Brad Young vs. Jasiel de Oliveira
8:08—Joe Gucker vs. Danny Bailey
8:16—Buddy Brown vs. Keith Johnson
8:16—Richard Wagner vs. George Farlow
8 a.m.—Corey Johnson vs. Chad Bryant
8:08—Noah Constantine vs. Richard Penny
8:16—Tim King vs. Mike Hall
8:24—Greg Byrd vs. Eddie Ball
8:32—Sterling Bryant vs. Brad Pittman
8:24—John Pittman vs. John Naillon
8:32—John Synan vs. Chris McDonald
8:24—Destin Barnes vs. David Perry
8:32—Macon Tunstall vs. Kent Farrell
8:24—Cecil Lockley vs. Nathan Freeman
8:32—Jerry Warren vs. Charles Hooker
8:40—Doug Baker vs. Clay Watkins
8:48—Kevin Cheek vs. Michael Huff
8:40—Allen Smith vs. Newt Barringer
8:48—Abe Lewis vs. Andrew Hanna
8:40—Ashley Berry vs. Tim Garrett
8:48—Dalton Rich vs. Jay Robinson
8:40—Jeff Robinson vs. Lea Couch
8:48—John Gaddy vs. Tim Eckstein