BY JEFF FALK
LEBANON – A student of the game and a local history enthusaist, Dan Brown appreciates the significance, the importance of the W.B. Sullivan Better-Ball-of-Partners golf tournament. So it was somehow both appropriate and ironic that he had to school a new partner on its meaning, in order for him to capture his third championship.
Turns out Jason Troutman is a quick study.
On a sticky Sunday over the Lebanon Country Club’s 6,562-yard, par-72 layout, Brown and Troutman teamed to win the 74th edition of the annual event by defeating medalist and 2015 champions Drew Patterson and Chad Stine, 2&1 in the final match of the championship flight. After leading most of the afternoon match, Troutman clinched the title by rolling in a seven-foot birdie putt at the 306-yard, par-four 17th hole.
Brown and Troutman had reached the final match with a similar 2&1 triumph over Ron Robinson and Andrew Lombardo in Sunday morning’s semifinal match.
Brown had also won Sullivan championships in 2010 and 2001, with partner Brian Auman. He is also the owner of three Lebanon County Amateur titles, as well as a handful of Harrisburg district and Pennsylvania state events.
But for Troutman, a Danville resident, it was his first Sulivan title. Last year, in their first Sullivan as a team, Brown and Troutman reached the semifinals before bowing out.
“He doesn’t realize how big it is,” said Brown, with a nod to his partner. “I’m trying to get him to grasp the meaning of it. To win the Sullivan is a pretty big accomplishment.
“When I started golfing 30 years ago, I never thought I’d win one tournament,” continued Brown. “It takes a lot of dedication and a lot of time. It’s just a lot of perseverance. You can be hitting it well one day and then bad the next day. Golf’s very humbling. I’ve never had any lessons. I kind of did it on my own.”
“I know it’s big,” said Troutman. “I’m excited. I’m pumped. Even guys from Danville have come down here. It’s know all around Pennsylvania. I live an hour and 20 minutes away, but when Dan asked me, I said I’d drive three hours to play with him.”