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Travelers Championship and local golf fans get the ending they deserved.

POSTED June 26, 2017
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

TORRINGTON: Good for the Travelers Championship and good for Connecticut.

The 2017 event, held at the TPC River Highlands in Cromwell last week had drawn a fantastic field with three of the top golfers in the world on hand.

It seemed like a perfect opportunity to show off the states leading sporting event each summer and boy, did it far exceed expectations.

I’m not usually a guy who gets into watching golf on television but I found myself glued to the show that was unfolding as 24-year old Jordan Spieth hit a shot for the ages out of a bunker on the 18th hole to win a playoff against Daniel Berger to take home the top prize.

Spieth, one of the fresh faces of golf who was clearly moved by the energy of the crowd that had swarmed to the 18th hole, said he felt the earth shake under his feet and no, it wasn’t an earthquake, it was a fan base that had hoped for this type of ending all week.

Think about his tee shot, the one that goes into the tree, hits a branch and bounces the right way onto the fairway.

We all know how far out of Cromwell most of our shots would have flown but on Sunday, luck (as Spieth called it afterwards) was on his side.

Surely after a scare on his first shot would not happen again but his second shot finds a deep bunker that I would have trouble throwing the ball towards the pin with any accuracy.

The guy who chased him and caught him on Championship Sunday, Berger, had put his shot just off the green and for all the world, it looked like they were heading for another sudden death hole.

For those who say golf sometimes lacks emotion, watching Spieth and his caddy, Michael Greller do a version of a chest bump after the remarkable shot found the bottom of the hole was pure joy.

Even watching Spieth walk down to the 18th as the two golfers made their way to the tee box gave you a clue as to how much he was soaking in and enjoying the moment, just like the masses that had flocked to get a good spot.

The taller you were on the 18th the better, as folks were packed in like sardines waiting for the drama that certainly didn’t disappoint.

Good for Cromwell, the organizers of this tournament have worked tirelessly to make it a stop on the PGA Tour that top notch golfers from around the world will want to play in.

They had a great field this year, threw the kind of party they always do and got an ending they could only have dreamed of.

Count on the crowds to grow again next year as the memory of this kind of final hole not likely to leave anyone’s mind anytime soon.


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