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‘Loaded at the Top’ For Oxford’s Sunny King Classic

‘Loaded at the top’

Oxford, AL – Robinson-Stumpfig top a crowded leaderboard after first round of Sunny King Classic, 14 teams within three shots of the lead, tightest Friday since 2018

Cody Robinson-Jack Stumpfig 55 -17
Jake Goggans-Rob Davie 57 -15
Randy Lipscomb-Dane Moore 57 -15
Garrett Burgess-Tanner Wells 57 -15
Taylor McCollum-Kyle Daugherty 57 -15
Jason Johnson-Landon Straub 57 -15
Ryan Howard-Chris Murphree 57 -15
5 teams at 58 -14

By Al Muskewitz

Cody Robinson and Jack Stumpfig came into their first Sunny King Charity Classic together with some specific, but lofty goals in mind. They want to shoot 13-under-par in each of the tournament’s three formats, which would give them a score that would win most Classics in the modern era. They were on the cusp of hitting their scramble goal at Silver Lakes with six holes to play Friday and then lightning struck to put them ahead of the game. They chipped in for consecutive eagles on Backbreaker 6 and 7 – their 15th and 16th holes of the day – and then closed with a birdie to finish at 17-under-par 55 and grab the opening round lead of the 43rd annual Classic.

The two out-of-state pros, who were formally the first team to register for this year’s field, might have shot the low score of the day, but there’s an army of top teams breathing down their necks. Six teams are tied at 15-under, five are tied at 14 and 14 teams are within three shots of the lead. It’s the tightest first-round leaderboard since 2018 when 10 teams were within two of the lead and 14 were within three. Last year, when the tournament finished in an historic playoff that lasted six holes, nine teams were within three shots of the lead after the first round. “It’s loaded at the top,” said Andrew Brooks, the reigning Calhoun County champion and one of the teams at 14. “That’s pretty impressive, and competitive,” tournament chairman Brett Key said. “I like it tight at the top, for sure.”

Robinson, 27, is a mini-tour player living in Ranburne who is about to move back to Tallapoosa, where his family runs a convenience store off the interstate. Stumpfig, 28, is Robinson’s former high school teammate and an internet teaching pro in Florida with several pro wins. “Our goal was 13-under each day and by the time were hole 12 I said were easily going to surpass this and then we go eagle-eagle right after that,” Robinson said. “That’s what made it extra special for us.”
On the eagle at 6 Stumpfig hit a driver over the water and Robinson chipped in from about 15 yards off the green. On the next one Stumpfig’s drive left the team about 160 yards out, then he hit a 9-iron just short of the green and chipped it into the hole. “We were yelling, going crazy,” Robinson said. “We let the whole course know it. It’s fun to have a good time.”

They needed every bit of the back-to-back eagles to hold onto the lead. Two of the 15-unders came out of the same group: Kyle Daugherty-Taylor McCollum and Garrett Burgess-Tanner Wells. Daugherty brought McCollum out of a self-imposed three-year golf retirement to replace 2019 champion Jacob Harper, who was battling to get through the first stage of Korn Ferry Tour Q-school, just so they could “come after” the defending champions Ott and Dalton Chandler. Daugherty and McCollum eagled three of the four par-5s and had nine birdies. Burgess and Wells had 15 birdies. Goggans and Davie parred their first hole of the day then ripped off 10 birdies in a row, with Davie dropping most of them. “My putter was hot and then I had Jake and I knew if I missed it he would back me up,” Davie said. “We hit a few close and then kind of rode the train.” [*** read more]

Cody Robinson (R) and Jack Stumpfig enjoy lunch after posting a 17-under-par 55 at Silver Lakes to take the Sunny King Classic first-round lead.
Cody Robinson (R) and Jack Stumpfig enjoy lunch after posting a 17-under-par 55 at Silver Lakes to take the Sunny King Classic first-round lead.

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