Bridgestone Winter Series: Randall Hutchison wins at Metro West

Michigan State alum wins by two shots

Randall Hutchison NGA TOUR Bridgestone Winter Series win

Randall Hutchison
NGA TOUR Bridgestone Winter Series win

Orlando, Fla. – October 25, 2012 – A week after finishing T7 in the  First Stage of PGA TOUR Q-School at Grasslands Golf & Country Club, Randall Hutchison carried the momentum into the opening event of the NGA TOUR Bridgestone Winter Series and earned his third BWS victory on Thursday.

Hutchison, a former Michigan State standout from Traverse City, Mich., opened the event with a tournament-low 64, led wire-to-wire and bested Jesse Smith, Riley Wheeldon and Ryan Brehm by two shots.

“Playing the way I did last week in First Stage definitely helped me  out this week,” said Hutchison, who earned $8,945 for the victory at Metro West. “Anytime you play well in an event like Q-School, it builds your confidence.”

The former Spartan, who started the day with a two-stroke lead, shot an even-par 36 on the front and watched his lead grow to three shots after second-place Brehm, who is also a Michigan State alumnus and Hutchison’s roommate during the BWS, carded a 1-over 37 on the outward nine.

“It was big not to make any mistakes on the front side,” said Hutchison. “I had my birdie opportunities, but I just missed them. I hit most of the fairways, attacked pins when I had the chance and played safe when I needed to.”

Hutchison picked up his lone birdie of the day on No. 12 and looked to be on cruise control until he carded a double bogey on the par-3 15th hole. Despite the misstep, Hutchison recorded pars on the final three holes en route to victory. Hutchison finished with rounds of 64-69-73 for a 10-under 206 total.

“I didn’t get nervous after making the double bogey,” said Hutchison.

“I just made one bad swing at the most inopportune time. I felt comfortable all day. Playing with [Brehm] was relaxing and there wasn’t any tension in the final group. All in all, it was a pretty good day.”

After the opening 37, Brehm of East Lansing, Mich., fell further from contention with a double bogey on No. 11, but back-to-back birdies on Nos. 12 and 13 helped him to finish in a tie for second with Smith and Wheeldon at 8-under par. Brehm carded a 1-over 73 in the final round, while Smith (Barrington, N.H.) and Wheeldon (Comox, Canada) posted rounds of 65 and 68, respectively, on Thursday.

German Allen John matched Hutchison’s low round of the tournament with a final-round 64 to move into a tie with Cory Stelick (Groton, N.Y.) at 7-under par. Stelick shot a 3-under 69 in the final round.

Mathieu Gingras (69) and Evan Harmeling (71) finished the Metro West event tied for seventh at 6-under par, while Chris Ross (69) came home ninth at 5-under par.

Miami native James Vargas (72) and Missouri golfer Scott Langley (74) finished the event tied for 10th at 4-under par.

The NGA TOUR, players and staff would like to thank Metro West for a great week of play in the opening event of the Bridgestone Winter Series. The second event of the BWS will start next week at Stoneybrook Golf Club in Stoneybrook, Fla.

The NGA Pro Golf Tour is the No. 3 Men’s Professional Golf Tour in the United States after the PGA and Tours and is the No. 1 recommended developmental tour by more PGA and Tour Professionals.

The NGA has helped hundreds of professionals acquire their PGA TOUR, Euro,, and Champions Tour cards. In fact, NGA alumni have won an incredible Fifteen (15) “Major” Championships.

NGA alumni include: 2012 Masters champion Bubba Watson; 2011 PGA Championship winner Keegan Bradley; 2010 PGA TOUR Player of the Year and 2003 US Open Champion Jim Furyk; 2009 British Open Champion Stewart Cink; 2009 U.S. Open Champion Lucas Glover; 2007 Masters Champion Zach Johnson; 2003 PGA Champion Shaun Micheel; 2003 British Open Champion Ben  Curtis; two-time U.S. Open Champion Lee Janzen; British Open and PGA Champion John Daly; British Open Champion Tom Lehman; PGA Champion David Toms; 2003 Tour Championship Winner Chad Campbell; 2010 NGA Player of the Year Michael Thompson; 2012 PGA TOUR winners Mark Wilson, George McNeill, Ted Potter Jr., Scott Stallings and Scott Piercy.

At this year’s PGA Tour Qualifying School, 52% of those earning full exempt status on the PGA TOUR and 67% of those earning full exempt status on the Tour were past NGA Professionals. Another 16 NGA Professionals advanced to the PGA TOUR for 2012 by finishing inside the Top 25 on the Tour money list, including 2011 NGA members Ted Potter Jr., Russell Knox and Billy Hurley III.

The NGA Pro Golf Tour, established in 1988, predates the Tour as the longest running developmental tour in golf. In 2012, the NGA TOUR became the “Official Partner of the 2012 Reno-Tahoe Open” and secured one PGA TOUR and six Tour event exemptions for its members, the most in developmental golf.

For more information on the NGA or the NGA Pro Golf Tour, please visit our website at or contact our Tour Office at (800) 992-8748.

Michael "Beach Mick" Hudson

About the Author:

Michael "Beach Mick" Hudson is the founder and Editor of Beach Carolina Magazine. Living along the coast of North Carolina, Mike has a passion for the beach and loves to bring news and events of the Carolinas to others around the world.

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