Boros battles through pack to win Tri-Cities Open

RICHLAND, Wash. -- Guy Boros, a former winner on the PGA Tour who virtually vanished from the golf radar screen in recent years, resurfaced Sunday with a victory in the Tri-Cities Open.

Boros, winner of the 1996 Greater Vancouver Open, shot a final-round 65 to finish at 14-under 274 and post a two-stroke victory over Jeff Gove at Meadow Springs Country Club. Third-round leader John Rollins was at 11-under, with seven players tied for fourth another shot back.

Boros, 37, finished 75th on the PGA Tour money list in 1996, thanks primarily to his win in Vancouver. He slipped to 120th the following year, then 198th in 1998 as he lost his playing privileges. The results haven't been much better on the Tour until his victory Sunday, which earned him $76,500 from the $425,000 purse.

Boros entered the round five shots behind Rollins and promptly bogeyed the opening hole. But then he caught fire, making eight birdies the rest of the way, including six on the back nine where he shot 30 to take the lead for good.

Gove, the Seattle native who led at the midway point and was trying to win in his home state, played a wild final round with seven birdies, four bogeys and just seven pars. He made three straight birdies after the turn to challenge for the lead, eventually shooting 69 to finish second.

The runner-up finish is big for Gove, who jumped from 18th on the money list into the top 15, a position he must hold at the end of the year if he hopes to get a return trip to the PGA Tour, where he played last season.

Rollins cracked the top 10 on the money list with his third-place finish.

The Tri-Cities Open is the first of three stops in the Pacific Northwest as the Tour winds down its season. Next week, the tour moves to Junction City for the Oregon Classic before a trip to Idaho for the Boise Classic. Three other West Coast events wrap up the regular season, with the top 50 players on the money list qualifying for the season-ending Tour Championship.