This time around, Chris Wilson landed on the winning side of the playoff coin.

Wilson, the 2007 Elks Invitational runner-up via a playoff, captured the 2008 crown Monday in an extended battle with Chad Lawrence.


This time around, Chris Wilson landed on the winning side of the playoff coin.
Wilson, the 2007 Elks Invitational runner-up via a playoff, captured the 2008 crown Monday in an extended battle with Chad Lawrence.
The Elks champion in 2001 and 2003, Wilson added his third title by draining a 15-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole, a par four.
In 2007, Wilson finished second when Dax Clark sank a 12-foot birdie putt on the second playoff hole.
Monday, Wilson owned a two-stroke lead over Lawrence with two holes left in regulation, but bogeys on 17 and 18 kept the already lengthy round going.
“It was neck-and-neck between Chad and I most of the day,” said Wilson, who just completed his fourth season as the head coach of the Louisiana Monroe men’s and women’s golf squads. “I don’t think either one of us had more than a one-shot lead until the 16th hole. Chad played well.”
Wilson appeared to have the tourney in hand following the 16th hole. Lawrence had to take a one-stroke penalty for an unplayable lie after hitting a shot under a cedar tree.
Wilson took advantage, canning a four-footer for a par. Lawrence missed a five-footer for a bogey, took a double bogey and went two strokes down.
But on the par-three 17th, Wilson — just off the front of the green after his tee shot — took three shots to get down for a bogey. Lawrence, whose tee shot landed just off the back of the green, holed an eight-foot, down-hill par putt to close within one shot.
On the 525-yard, par-five 18th, Wilson’s third shot — from a barren lie off the fairway — traveled just 15 yards. After chipping within eight feet of the hole, he rimmed the cup on a par putt and took a bogey. That came after Lawrence was just short on a 10-foot birdie putt, finished with a par and necessitated the playoff.
Wilson and Lawrence both forged a one-over 73 to end 54-hole regulation play at even-par 216. Entering the day, they shared a four-stroke lead over Ben Coffee and Robert Byaruhanga.
Coffee finished third, five shots back at 221. Byaruhanga, who broke his putter on the 11th hole and used a wedge to putt over the final seven holes, stumbled to an 81 and was tied for eighth at 228.
“Earlier in the round, I had the same identical putt on the second hole,” Wilson said. “I missed it short, but I had it dead in the heart of the cup. That gave me some confidence when I had the same putt in the playoff.
“I was pretty angry and disappointed after the bogeys on the last two holes,” Wilson said. “Overall, it was a great match. Chad was a great competitor.”
For Lawrence, who played college golf at Seminole State and St. Gregory’s and resides in Oklahoma City, the finish wasn’t disappointing. “This is like a win for me because I’m a weekend golfer,” he said. “Chris won because he managed ambiguity better than anyone else.”
Clark, who played for Wilson at Louisiana-Monroe, notched a 77 Monday to finish in the four-way tie at 228, 12 strokes off the pace. At 229, after a final-round 72, was 2005 Elks champion Justin Ramer.
The biggest comeback of the day belonged to Joe Rick Parsons in C flight. Parsons, eight shots back of the leader after 36 holes, recorded a final-round 74 to defeat Mike Blizzard by two strokes. Parsons had recorded rounds of 80 and 86 prior to his Monday rally. “I really putted well,” Parsons said.
Steve Montgomery, at 219, notched a five-stroke victory over Larry Johnston in B flight.
Other champions were Brent Turner in D flight at 230 (four shots over John Norman), Harlan Faulkner in E flight at 241 (nine better than Jimmy Brock) and Jeff Finley in F flight at 258 (five better than Ferrell Fletcher).
Note: For a complete look at all of the Elks scoring, see the Scoreboard.