• Mike Stuber watches as son Erik prepares to hit his last shot during the 2011 USAG Stuttgart Commander’s Cup Golf Tournament.

    MFE/MFA sweep Commander’s Cup

    Mike Stuber watches as son Erik prepares to hit his last shot during the 2011 USAG Stuttgart Commander’s Cup Golf Tournament.

  • A.J. Copp, right, congratulates Gary Liddell on the Marine Forces Europe/Marine Forces Africa sweep of the 2011 USAG Stuttgart Commander’s Cup Golf Tournament held May 20 at the Stuttgart Golf Course in Kornwestheim.

    MFE/MFA sweep Commander’s Cup

    A.J. Copp, right, congratulates Gary Liddell on the Marine Forces Europe/Marine Forces Africa sweep of the 2011 USAG Stuttgart Commander’s Cup Golf Tournament held May 20 at the Stuttgart Golf Course in Kornwestheim.

STUTTGART, Germany -- Marines may be “first in fight,” but they’re also first in golf. And second. And third.

Teams representing Marine Forces Europe and Marine Forces Africa swept the 2011 U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart Commander’s Cup Golf Tournament held May 20 at the Stuttgart Golf Course, taking the top three positions while solidly destroying Special Forces Command Europe’s two-year grip on the trophy.

For first-place team member Gary Liddell, taking possession of the trophy has been something he’s thought about for a long time.

“We’ve been chasing it for three years,” he said.

But for many of the golfers, participation had more to do with camaraderie than conquest.

“It’s great to get the opportunity to get out and play " especially to bring the garrison and EUCOM together.

“The golf course is a great equalizer. There’s no rank ... out there,” said U.S. European Command’s Michael Ritchie.

The tournament is designed to promote esprit de corps between the units and services.

“It gets people away from the workplace and builds team spirit,” said tournament director and golf course manager Gary Groff.

“The weather was great, prizes were good, the food was super, and everyone had a good time,” he added.

Even those who hadn’t swung a club in at least 17 years.

“The last time I played golf, there was a division at Fort Ord, California,” said Carl Bird, the USAG Stuttgart garrison commander.

But being rusty didn’t dissuade him from playing. “When the weather’s like this, and everybody’s smiling, what could be better?” he said.

RESULTS

First Place " MFE/MFA (Net 50): A.J. Copp, Eric Garcia, Gary Liddell, Jim Nogel; Second Place " MFE/MFA (Net 52): Tomas Carlos, Jonathan Myers, Ryan Schultz, Thomas Dodd; Third Place " MFE/MFA (Net 52): Ken Oldham, Paul Moreno, John Cryer, Brian Hardy. A tiebreaker system was used with identical team net scores.

Page last updated Wed June 1st, 2011 at 00:00