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Straight Down Fall Classic underway at San Luis Obispo Country Club

Posted at 1:20 AM, Nov 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-11-30 04:20:07-05

Golfers playing in the 22nd annual Straight Down Fall Classic got together Thursday night ahead of the weekend’s tournament and to receive an opportunity for a Q&A with Tim Mickelson.

Mickelson reflected on caddying for his brother, Phil Mickelson, during their recent duel against Tiger Woods in The Match at Shadow Creek Golf Club.

Thursday night also serves as an opportunity for the playing field to get together ahead of the weekend’s events at the San Luis Obispo Country Club.

Friday features the Straight Down Pro-Am called, “The Woody” in benefit of Don Woodward who died after a 17-month battle with ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease.  The tournament is scheduled for Saturday and Sunday.

This year’s competitive field includes PGA Tour players, club pros, and prominent amateurs.

  • Alan Bratton: The former PGA Tour player is now the head men’s golf coach at Oklahoma State. The Cowboys won the 2018 NCAA Championship with a lineup that includes U.S. Amateur champion Viktor Hovland and Matthew Wolff, the top-ranked player in college golf. Bratton shared the 1994 Jack Nicklaus Award, which is given to the top player in college golf, with future Tour winner Justin Leonard. Bratton also was a member of the 1995 Oklahoma State team that beat a Tiger Woods-led Stanford team in a playoff at the NCAA Championship.
  • Jason Gore: The Pepperdine alum may be best known for playing in the final group of the 2005 U.S. Open. He recently contended at the PGA Tour’s RSM Classic. He finished 15th after starting the round one shot off the lead. Gore has one PGA Tour win and is among the small group of professionals to shoot 59. He also owns a record-setting seven wins on the Web.com Tour, golf’s Triple A circuit.
  • Stewart Hagestad: The USC alum is No. 15 in the world amateur rankings. He finished 36th at the 2017 Masters to earn low-amateur honors. He also has played in the past two U.S. Opens. Hagestad advanced to the Round of 16 in the 2018 U.S. Amateur and played in the 2017 Walker Cup.
  • Ian Happ: The 23-year-old hit 39 home runs for the Chicago Cubs over the past two seasons. He finished eighth in the 2017 Rookie of the Year voting after hitting .253 with 24 home runs. He is the amateur partner of David von Hoffmann.
  • Brandon Harkins: The Chico State alum is in his second season on the PGA Tour. He recently shot a final-round 64 to finish 10th at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open.
  • Tom Hoge: He is playing his fifth season on the PGA Tour. He had three top-10s in the 2018 season, including a third-place finish at the Sony Open in Hawaii.
  • Edward Loar: The former PGA Tour winner and Fall Classic champion won twice on the Web.com Tour, as well as the 2003 Thailand Open and 2004 Korean Open. He beat Ernie Els, who was ranked No. 3 in the world, at the Korean Open.
  • Gary McCord: The longtime CBS broadcaster also is a two-time winner on PGA Tour Champions.
  • Tim Mickelson: Tim now serves as the caddie for his younger brother, Hall of Famer Phil Mickelson. Tim will play the Fall Classic after caddying for his brother in The Match, an 18-hole competition in Las Vegas between Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods. Tim also was the college coach of European Ryder Cup team member Jon Rahm. Tim will play the Fall Classic with Cal Poly golf coach Scott Cartwright.
  • Arron Oberholser: The San Luis Obispo native is now a Golf Channel commentator, but he also had a successful pro career before being sidelined by injuries. He won the PGA Tour’s AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in 2006 and once ranked in the top 25 of the world ranking.
  • Steve Pate: Pate won six times on the PGA Tour and was a member of two victorious Ryder Cup teams, including the famed “Miracle at Brookline” team that staged a record-setting comeback in 1999.
  • Loren Roberts: The Cal Poly alum won eight times on the PGA Tour and 13 times on PGA Tour Champions, the circuit for players aged 50 and older. He was inducted into the Cal Poly Athletic Hall of Fame in 1998. He also was runner-up in the 1994 U.S. Open and played in the 1995 Ryder Cup.
  • Kevin Stadler: The USC alum is on the comeback trail after suffering from a wrist injury for the past several years. Before he got hurt, he won the 2014 Waste Management Phoenix Open and finished eighth at the Masters. He also has won four times on the Web.com Tour and tournaments in Argentina and Australia.
  • Scott Simpson: The USC alum won seven times on the PGA Tour, including the 1987 U.S. Open. He also won two NCAA Championships for the Trojans.
  • Paul Stankowski: The former PGA Tour winner now serves as a commentator on Golf Channel and Sirius/XM. Stankowski won twice on the PGA Tour, as well as the Japan Tour and Web.com Tour. He ranked as high as 25th in the world. He is a former Fall Classic champion.
  • Robin Ventura: The former MLB All-Star is a 3.7 handicap. Ventura also was a six-time Gold Glove winner as a third baseman and first baseman. He was a career .267 hitter with 294 home runs while playing for the White Sox, Mets, Yankees and Dodgers. His brother, Rick, is the head professional at San Luis Obispo Country Club.

Mike Rowley is the defending champion, for the fifth time, winning with Jason Ballard, the head pro at Rochester’s Oak Hill Country Club.

The Fall Classic is free to attend and open to the public.

Live scoring results can be found here: Straight Down Fall Classic

More information on the Fall Classic can be found here.