by Hunter Dawkins

Monday morning, Kevin Sutherland finally won the Rapiscan Systems Classic on Monday by making an 18-foot birdie putt on the seventh hole of a sudden-death playoff to beat Scott Parel and win for the second time on the PGA TOUR Champions.  Sutherland, who missed a 2-foot putt to win on the second playoff hole, finally got it right on the 18th hole when his birdie putt dropped in for the win.

A sudden drop of temperature Sunday morning, a consistent drizzle, and an extreme 25 mile-an-hour wind gust led to the tough conditions at the Fallen Oak Golf Course for the 10th annual Rapiscan Systems Classic of the Senior PGA Champions Tour and a suspension from darkness in the 59 holes played.

Long-time PGA Tour veteran and former World Golf Championship-Match Play Champion Kevin Sutherland and two-time Champions Tour victor Scott Parel were forced to end play after finishing at 209 (-7) and five extra playoff holes with a score of 21 (+1) due to visitability.

Currently, both golfers sit inside the top 25 in points for the Charles Schwab Cup, but only 5 events have been played.  Sutherland is 9th in the points while Parel is 24th.

Previously, Parel was a journeyman that played golf mostly on the tour from 2003-13 with no real experience in college.  Despite this background, Parel has accomplished huge success on the Senior Champions Tour winning twice, including in an August 2018 event over Sutherland.

With no real push up the leaderboard on Military Appreciation Day, the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department were noticed escorting arguably the greatest golfer of all time, 79-year old Jack “The Golden Bear” Nicklaus.  Nicklaus was following his son, Gary, who is playing on a sponsor-exemption and finished with a score of 236.

During a span of 25 years, Nicklaus holds the record of 18 major championship in his professional golf career.  Additionally, won 8 senior major championships.

In other action, popular players, such as two-time Major Champion John Daly finished tied for 8th at 213 while 2018 Rapiscan Classic victor Steve Stricker and two-time Masters champion Bernhard Langer both posted 212 (-4) scores.

Recently joined, “The Big Fijian” Vijay Singh completed the event at 214 (-2), crowd favorite Fred Couples with a 216, and many others at higher scores.

South Mississippi native Glen Day did not have the luck from last year, but still posted a 222 to finish Tied 40th in the pack.  Day had finished in the top-10 for the last two years.

The playoff should continue tomorrow and The Gazebo Gazette will keep you updated.