Robert Welsh hit a 170-foot shot at the 18th hole that actually struck the pin on a bounce, but the ball came to rest seven feet away from the whole. It was the third-best shot ever in the finals, according to organizers of the event, which is a fundraiser for the Holiday Bowl.
“As the shot started to land, I heard some noise from my fellow contestants and some noise from the group around the green so I started to suspect it could be close,” Welsh said. “When I saw it bounce and hit the pin, I realized that it really had a chance to go in.”
He would have won $1 million if the ball rolled into the cup, but he walked away with a VIP package to the Dec. 27 college football game. No one has scored an ace in the finals in the event’s 24 years.
Second place went to Phil Jones of El Cajon, whose ball landed 19 feet, 10 inches away. Kyle Koop of Coronado hit a shot that stopped 26 feet, 6 inches away to come in third.