Bridgestone Winter Series: James Vargas wins at Shingle Creek

NCAA champion Scott Langley finishes second

Orlando, Fla. – November 8, 2012 – For many golfers in the field, the NGA TOUR Bridgestone Winter Series event at Shingle Creek Golf Club this week provided a perfect tune up for the Second Stage of PGA TOUR Q-School. And James Vargas hopes it was a foreshadowing of things to come as well.

James Vargas wins Shingle Creek

James Vargas wins Shingle Creek


Vargas, a former University of Florida standout from Miami, carded a tournament-low 65 in the first round, held off 2010 NCCA individual champion Scott Langley down the stretch and earned his fourth BWS victory on Thursday.


“It’s great to get a win right before second stage,” said Vargas, who easily advanced out of first stage. “It builds your confidence every time you win, so it’s nice to have tons of confidence going into next week.”


On Tuesday, Vargas likely was still carrying some confidence from his T10 finish in first stage as he torched Shingle Creek with nine birdies and two bogeys in the first round en route to the early lead.


“It’s huge to get off to a good start in these events, because they’re only three rounds,” said Vargas. “You need to get after it early and keep the pedal to the medal. I’m glad I did because the weather changed and the last two rounds everybody was grinding.”


Vargas did that well, too.


After getting out to an early lead, the former Gator only had one blemish during his second-round 69. Vargas stretched his lead in the final round by going 4-under par through the first 13 holes before dropping two shots late in the round. But by then, it didn’t matter. Vargas finished two shots clear of Langley with rounds of 65-69-70 for a 12-under 204 total and earned $10,110 for the victory.


“If the conditions were different in the final two rounds, I know I would have needed to shoot lower,” said Vargas. “It was cold and windy and I knew it was going to be tough on everybody. I felt like if I played solid and limited my mistakes it would force somebody to shoot 5 or 6 under to catch me. When it’s playing tough like that, it’s great to have the lead.”


Langley, a former two-time All-American at the University of Illinois, came up short of winning his first NGA TOUR event, but his runner-up finish was a career-best for the Manchester, Mo., native. Langley finished with rounds of 66-71-69 for a 10-under 206 total and earned $5,056 for the second-place effort.


Riley Wheeldon of Comox, Canada, finished third with rounds of 67-71-69 for a 9-under 207 total. Current Tour member Matt Harmon of Grand Rapids, Mich., posted a 3-under 69 in the final round to finish fourth at 7-under par, while Jesse Smith (69) and Allen John (70) finished fifth at 6-under par.


Wesley Graham (71) and Ryan Brehm (74) finished T7 at 5-under par, while Russ Berry (68), Cameron Carrico (69), David Lawrence (69), Randall Hutchison (73) and Chad Collins (73) finished T9 at 4-under par.


The NGA TOUR would like to thank all the players and staff at Shingle Creek for another great Bridgestone Winter Series event. The BWS will return to action next week at Harmony Golf Preserve.


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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