Lee Captures City Crown

Blythewood’s Bill Lee faces the media after nabbing the City Golf Championship title Saturday.

In 12 years of teeing off and competing in the Midlands Chevy Dealers’ City Golf Championship, Blythewood resident Brian Lee had never finished higher than fifth place – hard to believe, considering the 40-year-old duffer has won the club championship five years in a row at his home course at The Windermere Club in Blythewood. But Saturday Lee shook the monkey off his back, carrying a two-shot lead into the final round and walking off with a three-stroke victory over Tom Kennaday, Ben Karns and Will Murphy at the Spring Valley Golf Club.

Lee, who has played in the tournament every year since 2001 (the only tournament, outside of Windermere, in which he said he plays), said that his goal has always been to finish in the top five. But this year was different.

“This is a big deal for me,” Lee said after the win. “I never played college golf. This is my ‘Major’. Making bogey on the first hole calmed me down somewhat and I eagled on the second hole, so that was good.”

Lee began the day with a two-shot lead over Kennaday, but bogeyed on the first hole. Lee recovered, however, and went on to shoot a three-under 33 on the front nine, finishing the tourney at 72-66-71 – 209.

“I started off today with a two-shot lead. My mind set was to hunt and not be hunted,” Lee said. “I got a little tentative and more conservative on the back side. I bogeyed 10 and 18 and made par on everything else.”

Lee said that while he has “always had a good short game,” he came into the weekend’s tournament “hitting my driver pretty well,” putting the ball on the green in two shots on the par-5 two hole, then dropping a 20-foot putt for eagle. Lee finished the front nine with a birdie on the par-5 ninth hole.

“This course doesn’t favor the bombers,” he said. “I don’t hit very far, but I was able to hit fairways and move it left to right when I needed to.

“I had to hang on for dear life because I was afraid those guys were going to pass me in a hurry,” Lee added.

Murphy and Kennaday each shot 72, and Karns scored a 71 to move up and into a three-way tie at 212.

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