Holes-in-one made for friend

Published 3:41 pm Tuesday, March 15, 2011

HOWARD GRIFFIN, second from left, and Craig Fletcher, third from left, who made holes-in-one at Friday’s first Robert Baggs Invitational Golf Tournament, get together on Bainbridge Country Club’s 18th green with Larry Smith, left, of Southwind Ford in Colquitt that sponsored the holes-in-one and country club professional Jimmy Stevens, right.

Local golfers Howard Griffin and Craig Fletcher recorded holes-in-one to honor one of their best and dearest long time friends Friday at Bainbridge Country Club.

The occasion was the first Robert Baggs Invitational Golf Tournament, which they and other supporters plan to make an annual event.

Both golfers said playing in the tournament and making holes-in-one were extra special because the event was helping defray the medical expenses of one of their long time fiends, Robert Baggs, who is fighting pancreatic cancer.

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“I have known Robert since junior high school and playing for him Friday gave me extra incentive,” said Griffin, who previously made six holes-in-one in his golfing career,

He made his hole Friday on the par-3, 13th hole using a nine wood.

Fletcher, who has also known Baggs since their youth, made his first ever hole-in-one on the par-3, third hole using a 3-iron.

The tournament was won by the four-man team of Justin Eaves, Jimmy Dickson, Wayne Lambert and Ron Betts with a 24-under-par round of 48.

The tournament was played under a four-man scramble format with each golfer hitting their second shot from the spot of the longest drive.

Baggs, who was a member of a Bainbridge High School Bearcats Region champion golf team and a member of the University of Florida Gators golf team from 1966 to 1970, was on hand to watch the tournament tee off,

He said he is overwhelmed by the great spiritual and financial support he has received from the local golfing community and others.

Sponsor of the tournament and holes-in one-was Southwind Ford of Colquitt. For their holes-in-one, Griffin received a five-day, four-night cruise for two, and Fletcher received two round-trip airline tickets to anywhere in the continental United States.