Tim Frazier of Sycamore Hills Golf Club led the first day of the PGA Senior Championship at 5-under par, three strokes ahead of Delphi’s James Ousely. Brad Mays of Pebble Brook and Craig Bowden of KBS Shafts were not far behind, closing out their round at 1-under par.
Bowden had a strong start to the day with birdies on two and three, giving him a solid placement to fight for the lead early in the round.
“I had a lot of opportunities and was able to get my ball up and down pretty well today. I knew that if I could just get to 4 or 5-under par, I would maybe have a chance for a playoff or see what else could happen” said Bowden.
Frazier remained consistent in his play through the front nine and sat with a one stroke lead after 16, but fell short of the title with a bogey on 17, and a double bogey on 18.
“It was not as easy today as it was yesterday, so I was just trying to think about it by getting through one shot at a time.Yesterday I saw the lines of the putts better, the shots were better, so I was just trying to get through it today. But I had a couple of wild shots that ended up costing me” said Frazier.
Bowden did not let the tight race towards the end put too much pressure on his play, finishing the back side without anything over par, which was enough to snag the title.
“The key for me was that I made a really good up and down on hole 15. I got it to the edge of the hole, it fell in, and it was just one of those holes that helped to glue the round together. I was able to make that putt and my momentum kept going from that. I looked at my phone a couple times just to see where we were, and I saw where Frazier made a birdie on 16, he got it down there, two putted, and I was a shot back. However, I knew that 17 and 18 were both playing into the wind and that they were playing hard” said Bowden.
Bowden, Frazier, Mays, Ousely, and Jeff Marsh of Wabash, all qualified for the national championship.