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Marshal hurt, wind halts final round at Verizon Heritage

Marshal hurt, wind halts final round at Verizon Heritage

A marshal was hit by a falling tree limb as heavy winds swept through the Verizon Heritage during fourth-round play on Sunday.
William Millon was hit by the branch between the first and ninth holes. He was talkative, conscious and alert, tournament spokesman Arena Burdick said. Millon was transported to Hilton Head Regional Medical Center.
Soon after, the final round was halted because balls would not remain in place on Harbour Town Golf Links' 16th, 17th and 18th holes, which are exposed to Calibogue Sound.
Officials were to decide later Sunday whether to resume the round or wait until Monday.
"It got dangerous out there for spectators," PGA Tour tournament director Slugger White said. "It was dangerous and unplayable."
At 12:30 p.m., the flagsticks on those holes were bent in an arc as the wind whistled through the largely empty grandstands. Sand from the beach area along the lighthouse hole, No. 18, blew onto the fairway.
"We've never had anything like" these winds, said Cory Corbitt, director of sports and retail operations for Sea Pines Resort.
A swaying tree snagged the netting of Harbour Town's driving range and pulled part of it away.
Another long pine tree limb was split by the wind and hanging in the same area where Millon was struck. Tournament officials rolled in a backhoe to pull down the branch as they directed spectators into the ninth fairway on their way to Harbour Town's entrance.
Leader Jerry Kelly and playing partners Ernie Els and Kevin Na had just hit their approach shots into the first green when U.S. PGA Tour officials sent them back to the clubhouse.
An overnight storm brought tornado warnings, thunderstorms and the strong winds, which were forecast to gust up to 45 mph (70 kph) later Sunday. Winds were expected to blow at 20-30 mph (30-50 kph) on Monday.


Updated : 2021-10-22 16:08 GMT+08:00