The trip from El Dorado to Pine Bluff was a successful one for Drew Moore. One day after winning the Arkansas PGA Junior Tour event at Harbor Oaks, Moore won the Junior Tour event at Pine Bluff Country Club on Tuesday.
His second win was tougher than his first win, though. Moore won Monday’s event by six strokes, but had to come back to win the 16-17 age division at PBCC.
Moore came back from four strokes down after 10 holes to win the event by two strokes over Micah Cottrell of Pine Bluff and Jeffrey Manning and Trey Prince of White Hall.
“I played a lot worse (Tuesday),” Moore said. “The course is in good shape, but I didn’t play very well.”
Cottrell was six shots back of the leader, Manning, after 10 holes, but was able to recover to tie for second place. He won the playoff hole against Manning and Prince to claim the runner-up trophy to himself.
It was the second straight day that Cottrell finished as the runner-up to Moore.
Cottrell said he had a sloppy, decent round on Tuesday, but was not exactly happy with another second place award.
“I wouldn’t want a second place at my home courses, but it was better to save it,” he said. “It felt like a win, and it was a good feeling coming back, but it should’ve been a win. I just didn’t play as well as I wanted to.”
The first nine holes were a struggle for Moore and were littered with bogeys. While birdies were hard to come by for Moore in his second nine, he was able to cut down on the bogeys to get back into contention.
“I made more bogeys in the front nine, so less bogeys in the back is better,” Moore said.
As Moore started to cut down on his bogeys, it allowed him to creep back into contention, but he did not know how far back he was from the leader, Manning.
Just as Moore was starting to even out his game, Manning started to lose control of his — specifically with his driver.
Manning hit a ball into the water on hole No. 11 and by the beginning of the 14th hole, Moore and Manning were tied.
“I wasn’t hitting good off the tee, and that was a big problem,” Manning said. “That was the main problem.”
Moore bogeyed 14 as Manning made par to take a one-stroke lead again. But Moore was able to make par on hole No. 15 while Manning missed a 6-foot putt to finish with a bogey.
Manning then hit his drive on the 16th hole in the water for a one-stroke penalty. He double-bogeyed and Moore bogeyed, giving Moore a one-stroke lead going into the final hole. The threesome started the shotgun start on hole No. 18.
Manning’s drive landed close to a couple of trees, making his approach shot more difficult. Manning ended up double-bogeying the final hole, and even though Moore missed a putt to settle for a bogey, he was able to come away with the win.
“I thought that putt was going to be for the win,” Moore said. “I didn’t know if it was that close or what, and I didn’t want to miss it.”
Manning said putting his ball in the water on 16 really hurt his chances.
“That killed me. I blew up on that hole,” he said. “I felt pretty good going into the last few holes, I just let the pressure get to me.”
Moore was not the only one to win the two Junior Tour events the last two days. White Hall’s Jake McNulty won the 14-15 age division on Tuesday after he came away with first place at Monday’s event.
McNulty, of White Hall, said Monday’s win gave him a lot of confidence going into Tuesday.
“It’s been pretty fun being out there on the courses,” he said. “I was still struggling on the greens, but I have been scrambling a bit and knowing the courses have helped. I avoided the double and triple bogeys and the big blowout holes.”
Pete Carroll, of El Dorado, won the 12-13 age division with a 77, four shots better than his win on Monday.
In the 9-11 age division, White Hall’s Josh McNulty won Tuesday’s event with a 39 in nine holes. That is three strokes better than his win on Monday.