Lashley Wins Rocket Mortgage Classic PDF Print E-mail



Nate Lashley celebrates after winning the Rocket Mortgage Classic

Detroit, Michigan - Every once in awhile, a breakthrough victory from a

struggling journeyman provides a feel good moment, but what happened

on Sunday in Detroit is a next level vibe of triumph from tragedy. Nate

Lashley led the field wire to wire at Detroit Golf Club - firing rounds of

63-67-63-70 to finish at 25 under par capturing his first PGA Tour title

and the hearts of millions around the world.


It would be impossible to know all that Nate Lashley has endured since

the tragic loss of both parents - Rod and Char Lashley and girlfriend

Leslie Hofmeister while he attended college at Arizona. All three perished

in Rod's single engine Cessna plane that crashed in turbulent weather on

May 23, 2004 - they were on their way back home to Nebraska just hours

after watching Nate sink a 40 ft putt on the last hole to win the regional

in Oregon. It would be the last golf shot they would see Nate make.

Lashley returned to Arizona, but days after returning from the regional

the he had not heard from his parents and his coach Rick LaRose contacted

Senator John McCain's office. Three days later the wreckage and bodies

were found.


Now 36, Lashley has married and pursued his golf career, albeit as a

journeyman touring professional struggling for playing status. Last week

at the Travelers, he was an alternate who didn't make it into the field, this

week when David Berganio pulled out Lashley was his replacement. In

fact, after the life changing win that will now provide him with financial

security, a two exemption on the PGA Tour and entry into all of Golf's

largest events, Lashley's first comments was, "It was surreal, I'm just

grateful I got in the tournament." Once it all sank in Lashley reflected,

"I've been through a lot, it took a lot of years for me to get over my

parents death. It was mentally holding me back for a long time," Lashley

said. "I think about my parents all the time, I was getting emotional

walking up 18, even before I hit my second shot, thinking about my

parents. Without them, I wouldn't be sitting here."


Doc Redman finished solo 2nd six shots back at 19 under par after firing

a final round 67. Rory Sabbatini continued his good run tying for 3rd with

Les Roach after each shot 68 on Sunday.