Ben Cook carries 5-shot lead into Michigan PGA Professional Championship final round

The Detroit News

Ben Cook of Yankee Springs Golf Course in Wayland finished with a 7-under 65 Tuesday to carry a five-shot lead heading into the final round of the 99th Michigan PGA Professional Championship at the Flint Golf Club.

Jeff Roth of Boyne Golf Academy in Harbor Springs, a five-time champion and the defending champion, is the closest pursuer after shooting a second consecutive 68 for 8-under 136, and Spartan Golf Academy teaching pro Chad Kurmel of East Lansing will round out the final group after a 67 for 137.

Ben Cook finished 7-under 65 on Tuesday during the Michigan PGA Professional Championship at Flint Golf Club.

Roth totaled 17-under to win last year’s event.

Cook, 26, a former Ferris State University golfer and newly married for four days, said he has never slept on a big lead. His wins in golf have been in come-from-behind fashion.

“It will be something a little different for me, but that’s OK,” Cook said. “I’ll just try to go out and shoot 7-under tomorrow, too.”

A notable group of golfers of five golfers is tied for fourth at 140, nine shots adrift.

The group includes eight-time champion Scott Hebert of Traverse City Golf & Country Club, who shot 68, Flint Golf Club’s own Scott Brotebeck, who shot 70, Franklin Hills head professional Josh Fryer, who shot 69, Tim Pearce of Birmingham Country Club, who shot 72, and Adam Schumacher of Point O’Woods Golf & Country Club in Benton Harbor, who shot 71.

John Seltzer of Grand Rapids, the 2017 champion and a former bag attendant at Flint Golf Club, shot 70 for 141, and Julian Thompson of Detroit and Marlon Gisi of X-Golf Novi each shot 71 and rounded out the top 10 at 142.

The 36-hole cut to the low 60 scorers and ties fell at 7-over 151 with 63 players moving on to Wednesday’s final round.

In addition to playing for a share of the $54,000 purse, finishing in the top 9-to-12 spots tomorrow is significant. The low nine scorers at the end of the tournament — not including Cook, Roth and Hebert who are already qualified — will earn a spot in the 2021 PGA Professional National Championship next April.

The low 20 finishers from the national championship then move on to play with the best players in the world at next year’s PGA Championship next May.