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Smith beats Hogan in second playoff hole to win the Greater Rockford Men’s Golf Classic

Published: Aug. 2, 2020 at 8:38 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Marcus Smith knows a thing or two about pressure tournaments. The Winnebago grad won the IHSA Class 1A state championship as a junior in 2018. Two years later, Smith is now the Greater Rockford Men’s Golf Classic champion after knocking off Jamie Hogan on the second playoff hole on Sunday at Aldeen Golf Club.

The Greater Rockford Golf Classic was Smith’s first local summer tournament in two years and the second time playing in this event. The former Indians golfer stays busy golfing around the country, and this summer is no different. However, he was able to carve out two weekends out of his busy schedule to play closer to home.

“It was a really cool experience,” said Smith. “I played with a couple of guys I’ve never played before. But like I said, the guys I played with were really solid. I didn’t know what to expect but they were really good.”

One of the guys Smith was paired up with on Sunday was Hogan, a nine-time city champion.

“I could see why they call him the GOAT for a reason,” said Smith. “He’s definitely a legend and I had a lot of fun playing with him.”

It was clear on the back nine that it would come down to Smith and Hogan, each trading birdies, going shot for shot. Smith held a two-stroke lead on Hogan after 16, but a rain delay just as the two were about to tee off on 17 may have thrown him off a bit. He hit his second shot out of bounds, resulting in a penalty. Smith would go on to double-bogey the hole while Hogan parred it, sending the two to the 18 tied. Each parred that hole forcing the first playoff in the men’s city championship in more than 30 years. Aldeen Golf Club head pro Duncan Geddes said he does not have an exact timing on the last time it happened.

The two continue to trade haymaker for haymaker on the first playoff hole back on Hole 1 with both golfers posting birdies.

The second playoff hole on Hole 2, Hogan put himself in prime position getting on the green in two. Smith’s tee shot went in the right-side bunker. His bunker shot was a dud, leaving himself with a chip shot that needed to be near perfect. It was. It rolled inches from the flagpole for an easy tap-in par.

Hogan just needed to two-putt for par and send the pairing to a third playoff hole. His first putt was no gimme by any means, but it went right and never slowed down, leaving himself with a four-foot putt. Hogan pushed his par attempt to the right, giving Smith the win. Smith said this tournament was much harder than winning state in high school.

“Jamie Hogan didn’t give up any shots at all... He is by far one of the best players I have ever played with here.”

Men’s Championship Leaderboard (Final Results)

  1. Marcus J. Smith - 279 (66, 74, 71, 68) - Won in Playoff - Hole 2
  2. Jamie Hogan - 279 (72, 69, 70, 68)
  3. Cody Rhymer - 283 (71, 69, 73, 70)
  4. Garrett Ralston - 284 (71, 72, 72, 69)
  5. Robert Dofflemyer - 285 (70, 71, 75, 69)
  6. David Nagel - 286 (70, 69, 73, 74)
  7. Troy McNulty - 286 (72, 70, 73, 71)
  8. Kyle Rhymer - 292 (73, 72, 68, 79)
  9. Brian Silvers - 292 (71, 73, 71, 77)
  10. Ken Lee - 299 (74, 73, 73, 79)

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