Garrett Rank of Elmira, Ont., rolled in a short birdie putt on the first playoff hole to capture the 2014 Canadian Men’s Mid-Amateur Championship at Barrie Country Club in Barrie, Ont.
Rank, 27, finished the championship tied with Rob Couture of Dallas at four-under 284 after Couture forced the pair into a playoff with a birdie at the par five 18th hole in regulation.
The pair headed back to No. 18 tee for the first playoff hole, where Rank found the right rough off the tee. He went on to hit a three iron to 20 feet for eagle, putting the pressure squarely on Couture.
“It wasn’t a great lie, it was advance-able and I knew I could get some club on it,” said Rank. “I just took one extra club and it came out perfect. When it was in the air I knew it was going to be pretty good.”
After Couture’s approach from the fairway came up short, he left his third shot 20 feet below the hole and couldn’t convert his birdie putt after watching Rank’s eagle putt slide by.
That left Rank with a tap-in birdie and a spot in the field at the 2015 RBC Canadian Open at Glen Abbey in Oakville, Ont.
“The reason I came here was to win and I was trying to get into the RBC Canadian Open,” said Rank. “Anytime you can win a national championship is a huge honour and I’m glad I pulled it out.”
In the Mid-Master division, second round leader Darren Shaw os Stoney Creek, Ont., narrowly missed a spot in the playoff for the overall title after a final round two-under 70 that left him in solo third.
Shaw won the Mid-Master title by seven strokes over Dwight Reinhart of Renfrew, Ont. at two-under 286.
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