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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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MeadowWood move changes Rosauers

The venue has changed and the style of golf course is different, so it figures that the Rosauers Open Invitational leaderboard might see some new names.

The usual suspects – past champions Corey Prugh (2013, 2011, 2009), Kyle Kelly (2010), Jeff Coston (2008, 2006, 1997), Ryan Benzel (2005) – remain atop the list of favorites, but there will be unknowns for many with the tournament relocating from Indian Canyon to MeadowWood. The 54-hole event begins Friday, following a two-day pro-am. Proceeds benefit the Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery.

The move was prompted by winter damage to several of Indian Canyon’s greens. MeadowWood is longer and more open than the tree-lined Canyon, which has more severe greens.

“I think it opens the door to a larger set of people that can win it,” Indian Canyon pro Gary Lindeblad said. “Some of these guys hit it so far it’s a joke. It’ll be a huge advantage because they’ll have three par 5s that are easily reachable and on some of the par 4s, instead of hitting 7- or 8-irons they’ll be hitting sand wedges.”

For many of the 154 players, the familiarity of Indian Canyon will be replaced with a quick learning curve at the 6,874-yard MeadowWood.

“It’ll be really new (for players from outside the region),” MeadowWood pro Bob Scott said. “MeadowWood is probably a hair more user-friendly, but every hole is pretty straightforward, with the exception of maybe No. 3 where you can’t see the fairway bunker.”

Five of last year’s top six finishers return. Prugh finished at 14-under 199 and won by one shot. He set the tournament record at 21-under in 2009. The Rosauers was held at MeadowWood in 1991 and Rob Gibbons, who is in this year’s field, took first by shooting 18-under 198.

Lindeblad projected 14-under as the winning score. Scott opted for 16-17 under.

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