@bigbreak photo

Richy Werenski of South Hadley, MA got off to a fast start, struggled through the middle of the round and came from behind for a 2-and-1 match play victory over Justin Martinson of Avondale, PA  in the grand finale of Golf Channel’s Big Break The Palm Beaches television program.

That 18-hole match between Werenski and Martinson over the Champion Course at the PGA National Resort and Spa in Palm Beach Gardens was like watching a couple prize fighters try to out maneuver each other. The pair had to deal with heavy rain and wind in addition to trying to play ‘smart golf’.

Part of a 12 member cast of contestants, the two created a lot of drama making the final of the 23rd installment of the Big Break series well worth viewing. Of course it was an extra treat for New England golfers to watch one of their own win the event. The payday was worth $80,000 in cash and prizes plus an exemption for the PGA Tour’s Barbasol Championship in June.

The match ended on the famed par three 17th hole, the final leg of a trio of golf holes known as the Bear Trap.  The 15th, 16th and 17th are considered the toughest three holes in golf. It was the 17th hole that befuddled  both Daniel Berger and Padraig Harrington during this year’s Honda Classic when the the pair both had found the hazard, (water).

Werenski staked his tee shot to 7 feet while Martinson landed in the fringe left of the green. Going for the birdie in his attempt to extend the match, Martinson missed long. Werensky calmly dropped his putt for birdie to end the match and win the Big Break The Palm Beaches final.