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Charlie Beljan Toughs It Out

Charlie Beljan

Bob Donnan-US Presswire

I watched in dismay as Charlie Beljan continued to play in the second round of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospital Classic on Friday. He was suffering from heart palpitations, blood pressure problems, and told his caddy at one point, he thought he was going to die. Through all of the medical issues, he continued to play, and continued to play well. After signing his scorecard, he taken to the hospital on a stretcher.

Sitting on his bag between shots, and occasionally going to the ropes to be checked by a paramedic, the 28 year old from Mesa, Arizona continued to put up great numbers when it was his turn to play. He said in an interview on Saturday morning, he felt his best when making golf shots. He shot an eight under par 64 on the Palms Course at Disney near Orlando, Fla., and took the tournament lead at 13 under par.

Beljan knew he was sick while warming up before his round, and sent his caddy to find a health care professional to check him out. Unfortunately, he is currently 139th on the PGA Money List, and needs to finish this tournament high on the leaderboard to retain his tour car for the 2013 season to avoid the dreaded Q School next week. He has been checked out, and cleared to compete on Saturday.

At this writing, he has bogeyed the first and third holes to fall out of the lead, but rebounded with a birdie at four, and is now tied for the lead at 11 under par with Scott Stallings and Charlie Wi. The field is playing the Saturday round at the The Magnolia Course.