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story.lead_photo.caption Chris Jenkins (left), Fourth of July Classic winner

Chris Jenkins wasn't born on the Fourth of July, but his game has made him Mr. Fourth of July.

Particularly when the game is at War Memorial Golf Course in Little Rock.

Fourth of July Classic results

at War Memorial Golf Course, Little Rock

OPEN DIVISION

Chris Jenkins;61-60-63—184

Rod Rivas;63-60-65—188

Ryan Shuttleworth;65-62-63—190

Wes McNulty;59-65-72—196

Luke Cornett;67-62-67—196

Zachary Lovern-O’Riley;63-69-64—196

Ryan Spurlock;62-66-69—197

Cameron Reesor;67-64-68—199

Tyler Pinney;67-65-66—198

Grayson Martin;63-67-72—202

Nick Crisco;67-68-67—202

Hayden Leibrock;62-68-74—204

Winston Sizemore;66-70-70—206

William Surrett;69-64-74—207

Jack Lester;65-73-75—213

Ryan Turner;68-76-72—216

Colin Osment;69-76-74—219

Kent Norris;75-71-74—220

Rob Brown;72-78-71—221

Perry Streett;79-74-74—227

Jackson Marseilles;66-71-WD—WD

Brent Boland;75-WD-WD—WD

MID-SENIOR DIVISION

Brent Cook;64-63-72—199

Timo Anderson;67-65-69—201

Bill Burkhalter;64-68-71—203

Trey McIntosh;73-72-80—225

Jeff King;72-77-81—230

SENIOR DIVISION

Tracy Harris;64-61-61—186

Bev Hargraves;63-63-63—189

Fred Stamey;64-62-63—189

John Tetens;66-66-60—192

Jay Lester;66-65-64—195

Greg Norris;73-68-65—206

Curtis Savoy;68-71-69—208

Dane Glover;73-73-68—214

Ogugua Uchendu;70-69-85—224

Mike Pickens;80-76-73—229

Bill Bristow;76-80-75—231

Gary Graham;83-81-86—250

Ronnie Johnson;69-WD-WD—WD

Gary Ables;72-WD-WD—WD

Kirby Webb;69-64-WD—WD

SUPER-SENIOR DIVISION

Keith Browning;64-69-71—204

Jim Smith;68-69-69—206

Sam McAllister;70-69-68—207

Bill Wrentz;69-74-68—211

Byron Freeland;73-69-72—214

Cliff Powell;76-73;74—223

Kevin O’Malley;74-78-78—230

Gary Whitt;80-74-76—230

John McCarty;81-77-87—245

Gary Hooker;85-89-89—263

MASTERS DIVISION

Glen Talbert;65-66-68—199

Dan Young;68;69;72—209

Charlie Angel;72-68-76—216

Floyd Hickerson;83-79-79—241

Dudley Meadows;86-84-80—250

Fred Roberson;89-74-89—252

MATCH PLAY

FIRST FLIGHT

Larry Sullivan def. Willie Mergenschroer, 19 holes

FIRST FLIGHT CONSOLATION

Mark Griffin def. Jim Harris, 8 and 7

On a warm, windy Wednesday afternoon, Jenkins birdied his final two holes to hold off Rodrigo Rivas and win the 82nd annual Fourth of July Classic for the fifth consecutive year and extend his record to 10 overall.

Jenkins, a Little Rock insurance agent, shot a final-round 1-under 63 to finish the three-day stroke-play event at 8-under 184. Rivas, who was playing in the final group with Jenkins after recently completing his senior season at the University of Central Arkansas, finished second at 4-under 188 following a final-round 65.

While Rivas, 22, was making his Fourth of July debut, Jenkins, 48, grew up playing the Little Rock city courses and said he believes he's played this event -- his favorite tournament -- every year since he was 16.

Quite the home-course advantage.

"I know where all the pins are going to be; I know where I've got to hit every time," Jenkins said. "I've just played it so much that I can hit it bad around here and score fairly well -- just because I've played it so many times. That's a benefit that not everybody's got or an advantage not everybody has."

Jenkins began the final round 7 under and with a two-shot lead over Rivas. The advantage grew to five shots at the turn after Jenkins birdied No. 9. But it shrank to one shot after Jenkins bogeyed No. 10 and double-bogeyed No. 11 and Rivas birdied No. 12 and No. 13.

After both players parred No. 14, Rivas briefly pulled into a tie at 5 under with a 10-foot birdie putt on No. 15. Jenkins regained the lead seconds later when he holed a 9-foot left-to-right birdie putt.

"I really wasn't playing very well, but I was scoring OK," Jenkins said. "I kind of lost my mind for about 45 minutes there and Rod made a couple of really good birdies. My karma was fairly poor."

After both players parred No. 16, Jenkins regained the momentum on No. 17 -- a severe downhill 154-yard par 3. Rivas' 9-iron tee shot struck a tree and bounded back approximately 40 yards short and left of the pin. He dropped to 4 under after not getting up and down for par.

"That was the defining moment, I guess, in the round," said Rivas, a native of Santiago, Chile. "I was going to hit first, so obviously it's an advantage if I put it close. I was just trying to put a little bit of pressure on Chris. I was in between clubs, went with a bigger club, gave it a good swing, pulled it a little and the wind caught it. Hit a tree and ended up not in a good spot."

Jenkins, to a pin cut near the left edge, hit a pitching wedge to 3 feet and drained the uphill birdie putt to move to 7 under, three shots clear of Rivas.

"It was just a perfect wedge for me," said Jenkins, who described Wednesday's pin placements as "treacherous." "He had already hit one left, so I was aiming a little bit right and just trying to draw it in. I just hit it perfect."

Jenkins birdied No. 18 after hitting a sand wedge from 83 yards to about 2 feet on the 354-yard straightaway par 4. Jenkins bogeyed the opening hole, but bounced back with birdies at No. 3 and No. 9, when he hit a wedge on the 138-yard, par 3 to inside a foot.

"The way they set the golf course up, it's almost carnival-like," Jenkins said. "But that's the fun of it, that's the challenge. That's why I think people want to come back and play. It's extremely demanding. A great test -- more mental than physical."

Jenkins also won the Fourth of July Classic in 1995, 2001, 2002, 2004 and 2012.

Sports on 07/05/2018

Print Headline: Jenkins wins it a 10th time

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