Planet Golf — 24 August 2013 by Bob Sherwin
Rookie Riegger wins Boeing Classic

SNOQUALMIE, Wa. —  John Riegger won the Boeing Classic on Sunday in his fifth Champions Tour start, holding off John Cook and Fred Couples at TPC Snoqualmie Ridge.

The 50-year-old Riegger birdied three of the final four holes — holing a 20-footer for birdie on the par-5 18th — for a 4-under 68 and a two-stroke victory over Cook. Riegger finished at 15-under 201.

“I didn’t look at the board,” Riegger said. “The only person to put pressure on you is yourself. I knew these guys were great players their whole careers. Still are. I knew they were going to come out and throw some birdies at me early. I was going to play my game and I knew if I played the way I was capable of playing, things would take care of themselves.”

Riegger, a two-time winner on the Web.com Tour, is the fifth rookie to win this year on the 50-and-over tour, matching a record last tied in 2007.. He won $300,000, the biggest check in his professional career.

“This is going to go down as the best win of my career,” Riegger said. “It’s been a long, crazy career. I’ve been around the world and had a little success on the PGA Tour, European Tour, Web.com, but my game has actually gotten better the last couple years. … I was just trying to play my game, do what I was capable of doing, play the smart percentage and that’s what I did all day long.”

Cook closed with a 65.

“For him to come out and not have that much experience, to do what he did down the stretch is very commendable,” Cook said about Riegger.

Couples, from Seattle, was third at 11 under after a 66. He birdied the last three holes and four of the final five.

“Today it was a nice finish,” Couples said. “In the middle, I had a couple (missed) putts and that was about as good as I could have shot.”

 

 

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Bob Sherwin

Bob grew up in Cleveland, an underdog city with perennial underdog teams, and that gave him an appreciation and an affinity for the grinders in golf, guys such as Rocco Mediate, Jhonattan Vegas and star-crossed John Daly. This is the 46th year for Bob as a sportswriter, the first 34 working for newspapers throughout the west, Tucson (Daily Star), San Francisco (Examiner) and Seattle (Times), and the past 10 years as a freelancer. He has covered just about every sport, including golf tournaments, Tucson Open, Bing Crosby/AT&T Pro-Am, the 1998 PGA Championship, the 2010 U.S. Senior Open, the 2010 U.S. Amateur the 2015 U.S. Open and the annual Champions Tour Boeing Classic. He also writes articles for golf magazines. For most of his 20 years at the Seattle Times his primary beat was the Mariners. He then picked up Washington men's basketball in the winter. He also was the beat writer for the Sonics, including 1996 when they played the Bulls for the NBA title. After a lifetime hacking on public courses, he finally gave in and joined a country club in 2011, the Members Club of Aldarra near Seattle. Despite (or perhaps because) of his 14 handicap, he won the 'Super Senior'' (65 and older) championship in 2017. He has a pair of aces – 37 years apart – and in 2009 came agonizingly close to his ultimate golf goal of scoring in the 70s when he finished with an even 80. He lives in Seattle, and spends part of his winters in Marco Island, Fla.

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