Cheap Seat: Wilmington can win with PGA Tour drama –

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There are dozens of questions to be answered in the year before the Wells Fargo Championship comes to Wilmington next May.

Parking, hotels, restaurants, traffic. Yes, yes, yes and yes. And we’ll get them all taken care of.

One that won’t be answered until the very end, however, is who’s going to show up and play. Eagle Point Golf Club is a new track, and the PGA Tour’s best are famous for grooving schedules based on courses they like and hate, as well as the time of the year.

It really shouldn’t matter. Sunday’s final round at Quail Hollow Club here in Charlotte proved again that pro golf delivers the goods, no matter who’s atop the leaderboard.

James Hahn and Roberto Castro (go ahead, Google them real quick, I’ll wait) making plays down the stretch — and not Justin Rose and Rickie Fowler — still left an overflow crowd on 18 with plenty to yell about, even if it was to survive scramble mode in a wild final round.

In the end, after three-putting the 72nd hole of regulation, Hahn refocused himself in a playoff to win, but only by a stroke even though Castro hit into a creek, off a fan’s head and into a shoe on the 18th hole.

Big names? No way. Big drama? No doubt.

“I had watched a little bit of the golf yesterday, and the only people they were showing were Rickie, Phil (Mickelson) and Rory (McIlroy). I made a string of birdies,” Hahn said afterward.

“But that’s what the fans want to see. They want to see all those guys. Meanwhile, I’m just chipping away. It gives me a little bit more motivation. … I don’t play golf to be famous, but I at least want them to know my name.”

Hahn’s won twice now on the PGA Tour; his story is one of the more fascinating you’ll ever read.

Yet he’s not one to drive ticket sales.

Will Jordan Spieth’s connections to Hampstead be enough for him to make a trip to the coast? Or Dustin Johnson with the proximity to Myrtle Beach? Phil? Rickie? Rory? Guess we’ll have to wait and see.

But if Wilmington gets a nerve-wracking, stomach-turning finale like Charlotte did on Sunday, between the players ranked 97th and 120th on the tour points list, there’s going to be a lot of winners surrounding the 18th green at Eagle Point.

Wilmington is starting to get ready for a reintroduction to pro golf. James Hahn gave it a good script to follow.

“(I’ve been called) Danny Lee, Anthony Kim … C’mon Anthony Kim hasn’t played in like 10 years,” Hahn said with a laugh. “The fact they don’t even know my name gives me a little more motivation.

“You don’t know me now, but you will.”

Sports editor Dan Spears can be reached at 910-343-2038 or

Cheap Seat: Wilmington can win with PGA Tour drama –