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Rhode Island Repeat

PGA Tour part-timer Steve Stricker and partner Bo Van Pelt captured their second consecutive CVS Caremark Charity Classic at scenic Rhode Island Country Club on Tuesday.

For those unfamiliar with it, the CVS tournament is a two-day event that appears on the PGA Tour schedule and is hosted by Rhode Islanders Brad Faxon and Billy Andrade. It features top names from the PGA, LPGA and Champions tours, and has raised more than $17 million for local charities since its 1999 inception.

Stricker and Van Pelt prevailed by a stroke in the 36-hole best-ball format, shooting 62-60 to finish at 20-under-par 122. Peter Jacobsen and Jimmy Walker (62-61) finished second. The winners took home $150,000 apiece.

Paired in the final round, the two teams engaged in a stirring battle down the stretch, with the elders of the foursome emerging as the stars. The last four holes at Rhode Island Country Club overlook Narragansett Bay, and upon crossing the road to tackle that stretch the 60-year-old Jacobsen promptly stiffed his approach to the par-4 15th and made birdie. But Stricker, 47, was inside him and answered with a birdie of his own to preserve his team’s one-stroke lead.

Fast forward to the 145-yard 17th, where Jacobsen bunkered a short iron. With his partner 10 feet away for birdie, Jake calmly holed his blast from the sand. But Stricker, who was also 10 feet away, drained his putt, once again preserving his pair’s slim cushion, which held up on 18 when Jacobsen missed a 12-footer to tie.

The teams of Russell Henley/Harris English and Suzann Pettersen/Jonas Blixt tied for third at 15 under. And upon the conclusion of play, Stricker and five of his 2013 U.S. Presidents Cup teammates who were in the field – Jason Dufner, Bill Haas, Hunter Mahan, Zach Johnson and Matt Kuchar – boarded a private plane to Washington, D.C., where they attended a late-afternoon White House reception with President Obama.


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