The Web.Com Tour returns to western New York in June at the LECOM Health Challenge. The Peek’n Peak resort hosts the tour for the 3rd consecutive year, and the 9th time overall. Last year’s winner (Chesson Hadley) and runner-up (Beau Hossler) used their success as a springboard to the PGA Tour in 2017-18, and similar results can be expected from this year’s challengers.

The course at Peek’n Peak opened its first nine in 1993, and its second, three years later. The course was designed by John Exley, who also laid out the Whispering Woods course in Erie, Pennsylvania. In 2006, the course underwent a mild redesign, in which the former 10th hole was replaced by a new par three, between current holes four and six. The course traverses a wild stretch of resort property, descending and climbing hills steep enough for ski trails, blazing a trail past ponds and over creeks. It is the epitome of a hill course, demanding that golfers consider and negotiate angles to optimize performance. 

To get to know the golf course, stop by the tournament’s official twitter feed. A video series on each hole, starting with the closer, is running through the beginning of the tournament. BuffaloGolfer will take a look at three holes at a time, beginning with the daunting 18th hole. A tee shot from the heights of a tall hill brings the golfer down to a left-turning fairway. Then comes the decision: lay up or challenge the creek that fronts the green. Eagles await, but so do the wretched “others.”

The 17th hole fulfills an important role toward the end of the round. A golfer coming off the driveable 16th has an opportunity to putt for birdie at the penultimate hole, but only if the drive and approach reach proper execution. A birdie at this hole sets the stage for a daring drive at the reachable, par-five 18th. A bogey makes birdie or eagle even more necessary at the last. 

The 16th hole is the first of two risk-reward holes among the closing triumvirate. A hard, dogleg left, golfers with great daring will hit a slinging hook around the corner, attempting to drive the green, and putt or chip for eagle. Others will lay back in the fairway, then take dead aim with wedge for a run at birdie. Both strategies guarantee excitement and capture the attention of the gallery.

To stay apace of updates from this year’s tournament, be sure to follow the LECOM Health Challenge on and on these social media spaces:

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