Yamaha Coast Open Championship becomes a victim of rainy weather

By A.J. Giardina – bio | email

BAY ST LOUIS, MS(WLOX) - A field of 150 golfers are vying for the Coast Open Championship.  The golfers watched the first round planned at Shell Landing canceled because of rainy weather.

The golfers were expecting a better day at The Bridges in Bay St. Louis.  Because of rain, tee times were delayed by 56 minutes.

Those who started early had to contend with the weather, including Lane Pippin. The Ocean Springs golfer is a past champion of the Coast Open and was runner-up in 2009.

Pippin said, "Today we got the tough end of the draw playing early in the morning. We had a rain delay early on. The course was a little bit wet so it was a little bit tougher then want they're going to face this afternoon."

Pippin closed out the first round at even par. He had three birdies and three bogeys. He says out-of-town golfers will have a better chance at winning since the tournament is now 36 holes instead of 54.

"The local guys playing three different courses that we're familiar with gives us an advantage and whenever they shorten it, I think it takes away from our advantage a little bit," he explained.

Kyle Ramey, a former Southern Miss golfer took the early clubhouse lead. Ramey fired a three-under 69. Not bad when you consider the weather conditions.

Ramey said, "It was tough for the front nine, it rained pretty hard all day but I'm happy with it all and all."

Ramsey says the Bridges golf course gave him problems early.

"I kind of got off to a rough start, bogeyed two out of my first three and then played pretty steady on my way in. I made five birdies coming in. I finished pretty strong, " Ramey explained.

Bad weather later moved in over The Bridges and 74 golfers failed to complete the 18 holes are didn't even get a chance to tee off.  Officials decided to cancel the second round and the field will try taking aim on Windance Country Club on Sunday to hopeful decide a champion.

However, according to WLOX meteorologist Carrie Duncan there's a 60 percent chance of rain on Sunday.

©2009 WLOX. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.