Berry Wins Fifth Senior Open Title in Six Years
Don Berry of Edinburgh USA G.C. won his fifth Minnesota Senior Open title in the past six years today, handily, at Baker National G.C. Avenging last year’s finish, Berry shot a 9-under 135 two-day total to win by an astounding nine shots over Mike Barge of Hazeltine National G.C.
Berry nearly matched his first round 5-under 67 with a second round score of 4-under 68 that was highlighted by an absurd 5-under in his last five holes.
After somewhat of a shaky start to his day with bogeys on the par-4 3rd and par-4 6th, Berry settled in nicely with birdies on the par-5 6th and par-4 9th.
Those two birdies proved to be more than enough, but his best play was still ahead of him.
“I had two bogeys early even though I thought I hit good shots on both of them,” said Berry. “I even felt the same about the last bogey on the 13th. I was hitting the ball good, so I didn’t get too worried about it or down on myself.”
Berry is referring to his bogey that resulted from an unfortunate bounce off the cart path leading to his ball being unplayable on the 13th. What followed was a performance that we may not see the rest of this summer.
Right away, he responded with a birdie from 4-feet after hitting a great approach from 170 yards out on the par-4 14th. On the par-4 16th, he made a testy 10-footer for birdie putting him at 6-under and six shots ahead.
The shot of the day and tournament came at the par-4 17th when Berry’s wedge from 90 yards out landed three feet past the hole and spun back in for eagle.
As if that wasn’t enough, he would cap it all off with another birdie on the par-4 18th to finish 4-under on the back. With that performance, this victory tasted sweeter than most for a guy who has won his fair share of tournaments.
“When I’ve won this before, I haven’t necessarily felt like I played great but just good enough [to win],” he emphasized. “This time I did and that made it fun.”
“There are so many good players. It’s something that I never thought I would be to do,” added Berry, of winning his fifth title in six years.
Mike Flaherty from Dakota Pines G.C. began the day one shot off the lead but a costly lip out for par on the par-4 1st and four-putt triple-bogey on the par-4 3rd quickly moved him out of contention.
Mike Barge won the 60-64 Age Division while David Whittaker of Northland C.C. and Pat Vincelli of Brackett’s Crossing C.C. shared the 65 & Older Age Division crown. The low amateur was a three-way tie between Greg Murphy of Keller G.C., Bob Neuberger of Rush Creek G.C. and Scott Holt of Pebble Creek G.C.