Tim Skellenger Airmails Father’s Day Gift

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How much did the cheers of your hometown crowd help during the final round?
Tim: Whenever you have that much support it always helps. It felt really good when people recognized a good shot. They helped me relax and even to push harder. I felt like I was playing for them as much as I was for me. I wanted to win it for the fans, and for my Dad. I didn’t want to give my Dad a second place trophy. I was fighting for him.
You played with headphones on for a lot of the tournament. What were you jamming to?
Tim: Morning Teleportation. They are originally from Kentucky but live in Portland now. I normally listen to more relaxing music when I play but this was working in round one so I just stuck with it.
So that’s what you listened to the entire time?
Yep. Just them. I started listening to music when I play about a year ago. Honestly, I am not really even listening to it so much as I am using it to block out everything else. It is more like white noise.
You had your family with you all weekend. Did that create any nervousness and therefore some extra focus, or did it help you relax?
Tim: My parents have been very supportive. They have been to Worlds, USDGC, the Beaver State Fling, and others. It used to make me nervous but now it actually calms me down. Coming down the stretch in Portland I was more nervous than ever. Especially when I tied it up on Hole 14, the long par 5. Having them there definitely helped in that moment.
Can you describe how you felt when your last putt dropped?
Tim: I was pretty overwhelmed with emotions. I had been holding it in and holding it in… it all just had to come out. My reaction probably would have been similar had I won.

Photo by Charles Andersen
Can you put into perspective that special, Father’s Day moment with you and your Dad?
Tim: I am an emotional guy. As it all came pouring out I looked at my Dad. I wanted so badly to win for him, but at the same time, I tried to remember it was Father’s Day and to really embrace the moment. It is a memory that we will always share and that is so much bigger than the tournament itself.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
I would like to say that even though I finished second, Cale (Leiviska) deserved the win. He fought hard and earned it, so hats off to him. I would also like to thank my family and friends, the fans, and Innova Champion for all of their support.

Other top performers at the Beaver State Fling included Will Schusterick (3rd), Dave Feldberg (5th), Steve Brinster (T-6th), and Ken Climo (9th). Jim Oates picked up the win in Grandmasters. In Masters it was Patrick Brown (2nd) and Jay Reading (4th), while Valarie Jenkins (3rd) took team honors in Women’s Open.

Around the country it was Kevin McCoy winning Georgia’s Peach Basket Invitational. Josh Childs was right on his heels finishing second. Joe Mela notched the win at the Akron Day in the Park, and Brian Schweberger won the Tar River Round Up in North Carolina.