It took an overtime to decide the championship team in the 18th edition of The Cove Classic golf tournament at Windhaven Golf Course last Saturday (July 10).
But EA Weymuller’s feather-light touch on an improvised 10th-hole chip-off was the difference, and the first-year entry from the Twisp River Tap House capped a record-setting day to earn the top spot in the annual fundraiser for The Cove.
The Classic is an annual nine-hole golf tournament, featuring a four-person team scramble format, that began in 2003 and has been played every year except 2014, when it was canceled during the early days of the Carlton Complex Fire.
Over the years, the tournament has raised more than $150, 000 to support the community nonprofit that operates the Methow Valley Food Bank, and that also oversees the Aid and Assistance Fund, Friday Food, and Christmastime Manger Mall and Neighbors Helping Neighbors programs to serve the economically disadvantaged in the upper valley.
Along with a round of golf, The Cove provided a lunch and refreshments for golfers, team photos, and a skills competition for long and accurate drives.
Stewart and Amy O’Farrell of the Twisp River Tap House signed on as first-year sponsors of the tournament, and assembled a team that also included locals EA Weymuller, Sid Zielke and Parks Crownover. They toured the course in a record 25 strokes (five under par), tying Lloyd Ritchie’s All-Phase Dry Wall team.
Weymuller’s playoff chip from the seventh tee to the down-sloped sixth green edged out the All-Phase team’s effort, and the Tap House team took the top spot to also win an overnight package provided by Sun Mountain Lodge. A Bear Creek Golf junket awaited the second-place team, and a Hometown Pizza package went to the third-place team of Andrew Carr, Silas Shaw, Riley Dickinson and captain Robby Sigler.
In the scramble format, each player hits a tee shot, the team then electing to take the best lie for its second shot, and so on through the final putt into the cup. Each team must use at least two drives by each member somewhere in the nine-hole round, which can complicate strategies as the round wears on.
O’Farrell was pleased with the win. “The team came together at the last minute,” the captain said. Zielke was a final addition to bring the team up to the required four players. “It was just one of those days when the ball went where it needed to go,” O’Farrell said.
Dickinson captured the long-drive competition for men on the seventh hole. Hudson Wengerd was the winner of the women’s/children’s’ long-drive prize; and Rick Mills took the closest-to-the-pin accuracy honors on the fifth hole. All earned a complimentary dinner at the Friday night Bear Creek Golf Course Barbeque.
Cove Executive Director Glenn Schmekel was also happy with the event. “Everybody had a lot of fun playing the Windhaven course, and The Cove was blessed with about $8,000 to support its programs,” he said.
COVID concerns and protocols reduced the Classic’s participation levels in 2020 and 2021, but the field looks to be a complete 15-team tourney in 2022. The tentative date is Saturday, July 9. Contact The Cove at 997-0227 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information, and to get on the mailing list for 2022.