Thursday, June 28, 2007
Well, something is happening now.
Horseshoe Bay already had the largest collection of Robert Trent Jones Sr.-designed golf holes in the U.S., 54 of them on the Applerock, Ram Rock and Slick Rock courses. Soon, the resort will add 18 holes designed by Jack Nicklaus, a course named Summit Rock.
Summit Rock Golf Club is actually the centerpiece of a 1,600-acre residential development called Skywater over Horseshoe Bay. But once the course and its clubhouse are finished, Horseshoe Bay Resort will take it over, and resort guests will have access to the course just as they have access to the existing RTJ courses.
Summit Rock will be a par-72, 7,200-yard layout over 200 acres, and divided into two distinct sections – a lower, level playing area and an upper playing area of more rugged terrain.
The course and clubhouse are currently under construction, and expected to be completed in time to open in Fall 2008.
You can find more info about the Skywater development at http://www.skywatertexas.com/, and about Horseshoe Bay Resort at http://www.hsbresort.com/.
Wednesday, June 27, 2007
Pelletier and Rommann finished one shot up on a trio of teams to win the $,5000 first-place check. Tied for second place and earning $3,233.33 per team were Britt Patton and Judd Whiteman of Dallas National Golf Club, Richie Ware and Will Doughtie of The Vaquero Club in Westlake, and Jim Dickson and Ryan Thompson of the Gary Player Course at The Woodlands Country Club.
Four teams tied for fifth place and $1,500 each at 135. They were: Kenny Huff and Sean Sciba of Cascade Counry Club in Tyler; Philip Miranda and Ricky Arnett of Great Hills Country Club in Austin; William Lamb and Jon Antunes of H.O.T. Golf Academy in Waco; and Tim Thelen and Jason Rusilowski of The Traditions Club at Texas A&M in Bryan.
A total of 107 teams from the Southern Texas PGA, the Northern Texas PGA and the El Paso area of the Sun Country PGA played in the tournament.
Full results on the STPGA Web site
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
The Champions Tour tournament is already planning on capitalizing on Trevino's last tournament to draw out the fans.
Trevino, a three-time winner of San Antonio's senior tour stop, turns 68 in December, and cited his age as the chief factor in the decision to join friends Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus in walking away from tournament golf.
"We'll do whatever we can do to celebrate this," Colby Callaway, director of the AT&T Championship, said. "Heck, we'll order a cake now. What an opportunity."
Sunday, June 24, 2007
The tournament, played at Sky Creek Ranch in Keller, came down to Miskell, the 2006 Texas Golf Association player of the year, against Willis, a golfer on the Sam Houston State University team. Miskell won the match, 3-and-1, just a few weeks after pairing with Trip Kuehne to win another TGA title, the State Four Ball.
See the TGA Public Links homepage for complete details.
Thursday, June 21, 2007
Garland, TX – Shannon Fish, amateur from Spring, Texas and member of the Longhorn women’s golf team, captured the 2007 Texas Women’s Open at Eastern Hills Country Club with a two day total score of 145 (73-72) to finish at 5-over par for the Championship. Fish’s final round 73 was highlighted by a three-foot par saving putt on the 36th hole of the Championship to claim the title.
Catherine Matranga finished second in the Championship and claimed low professional honors with a two day total score of 146. The 18 professionals in the field were competing for a share of the $7,200.00 purse with Matranga taking home $1,875.00.
In addition to overall champion and low amateur Shannon Fish, four other amateurs were recognized with awards for their fine play during the Championship. Amateurs Jennifer Ackerson, Allen, Texas, Erica Doody, Austin, Texas, Kimberly Meck, Austin, Texas, and Sarah Zwartynski, Allen, Texas finished in the top five of the amateur division.
Past champions of the Texas Women’s Open include Babe Zaharias (1951 & 52), Betsy Rawls (1953 &amp;amp; 54), and Tara Bateman (2001 & 02). Fish will attempt to join this elite group of two-time champions in 2007 by successfully defending her title.
The 36-hole stroke play event featured a field of 90 top playing professionals and amateurs competing at Eastern Hills Country Club located in Garland, Texas. The 6,104 yard, par 70 layout has played host to the Texas Women’s Open since 2001.
Shannon Fish (a) , Spring, 72-73--145
Catherine Matranga, Fort Worth, 76-70--146
Jennifer Ackerson (a), Allen, 77-72--149
Erica Doody (a), Austin, 75-75--150
Kimberly Meck (a), Austin, 72-78--150
Sarah Zwartynski (a), Allen, 71-79--150
The closure will allow for a renovation costing nearly $3 million and led by Arlington golf course architect John Colligan.
The historic Brackenridge, designed by A.W. Tillinghast and one of the oldest golf courses in Texas, has been showing its age in recent years. And play has declined not only at Brack, but at all San Antonio municipals. The city recently created a governing body for golf, the Municipal Golf Association, which is in charge of coming up with plans for improving the quality of the city courses and the quality of the golfers' experiences at city courses.
The Brack renovation is a major step in that plan.
See the San Antonio Express-News article for full details.
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
The field at the USWAPL has an average age of around 20, kept so low because of the huge increase in recent years of teen girls who are competitive at USGA adult championships. Not just competitive, but victorious - Kimberly Kim won the U.S. Women's Amateur last year at age 14. She's at the USWAPL this week, and so is an 11-year-old.
Then there's Anna Schultz of Rockwall, who at age 51 is one of four seniors in the USWAPL this week. She is featured in an article on the tournament Web site:
"I just love the competition," said Schultz. "I don’t care how young or how old the players are, I just love to compete. It doesn’t bother me in the least that they’re hitting 7-iron into the green and I’m hitting 7-wood."
Schultz, a mother of three and a self-employed CPA (certified public accountant), was exempt into the field via her runner-up finish at last year’s USGA Senior Women’s Amateur. She was also the 2000 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur runner-up and a semifinalist at that event in 2001.
Frustrated by her opening-round 82, Schultz grounded her clubs by leaving all but one in the trunk of her car overnight. She took her 6-iron back to her room, stood in front of a mirror and worked through a swing glitch.
Schultz came back today with a 72. As I write this, play is suspended due to rain, but Schultz does have a chance - probably slim - to make it into match play. The second-round results will be posted here.
"I see a lot of young kids get really flustered out there at times when things start to go bad," she said. "You have to remember it’s just a game, there are going to be goods and bads; that there are a lot more dire things going on in the world."
You can get fuller details of the plan in our first post about it here.
Golfers in Corpus weren't too pleased with this idea. And nobody in Corpus is ever pleased with anything new. So it now appears the idea is dead.
Rather than relocate golfers, the city and university are now talking about relocating little league baseball and Little Miss Kickball players from South Guth Park, almost directly across the Cayo del Oso from the school's existing facilities, and turning that land over to the university.
Local golfers are mighty pleased.
Monday, June 18, 2007
This article represents an experiment for Texas Golf and I'd like to ask for your feedback. Using a new syndication system, I'm able to (legally) publish the full article right here on Texas Golf, without having to post just a brief synopsis and then link offsite. The trade-off, however, is that an advertisement appears with the article.
Yes, there are ads all over this page, but they are all outside the content. The ad below appears right there with the content. Which will be very annoying to some. Others won't have a problem with it since that arrangement is what allows us to offer this great article about the future of Port A and its Palmer golf course.
What do you think? Keep in mind these big ad-supported content pieces won't become the norm here; they'll just be something we have the option to offer when a good piece of content becomes available. Let me know what you think in comments.
Here's the article (click the arrows just above the text to turn to the next page of the article):
The Coca-Cola/Wal-Mart Open was played at Oak Wing Golf Club in Alexandria, La., over the weekend. The Alexandria newspaper gives some good background on the USPGT fiasco and how the tour was reborn as the Adams Golf Pro Tour series here.
Meanwhile, here are the Top 5 finishers at the Coca-Cola/Wal-Mart Open:
Daniel Fox, Little Rock, Ark., 68-64-67-68--267 (-21)
Brett Callas, Houston, 69-65-68-66--268 (-20)
Adam Meyer, Fort Worth, 66-72-69-65--272 (-16)
Brice Garnett, Gallatin, Mo., 67-72-69-65--273 (-15)
Mike Wendling, Oklahoma City, Okla., 70-70-68-65--273 (-15)
Andrew Dresser, Carrollton, 66-71-66-70--273 (-15)
Fox earned just under $13,000 for the win. He moves into second place, behind Meyer, on the money list.
Adams Golf Pro Tour series Web site
Saturday, June 16, 2007
"The STPGA Foundation Scholarship Program has grown in leaps and bounds since it was restructured eight years ago," said Doug DeSive, head golf professional at the Corpus Christi Country Club and the chairman of the STPGA Scholarship Committee. "We were able to increase the total number of scholarships awarded by three and the total dollars distributed by $6,000 compared to last year, and that speaks volumes to the degree to which the Southern Texas PGA, its members and the STPGA Foundation are committed to the support of higher education."
"It also speaks very well to the level of support the program enjoys within the southern Texas golf community, and I want to express our appreciation to all the people who have dedicated themselves to raising the funds that support the program," added DeSive.
The stated goal of the STPGA Foundation is "to encourage and promote the attainment of higher education goals for youth who have demonstrated a high level of achievement during high school or college, have financial need, and have shown an interest in the game of golf."
"Each of the scholarship recipients is deserving of our congratulations," said DeSive. "They are all part of a very deserving group of students, and I know I can speak for all the members of the Southern Texas PGA when I say we’re very proud to be able to help them achieve their educational dreams."
Southern Texas PGA Foundation scholarship recipients are selected on the basis of a number of criteria, including residence within southern Texas, status as full-time students, a minimum grade point average and financial need.
The 2007 Southern Texas PGA Foundation’s Scholarship recipients are listed below. For additional details, please visit the STPGA web site (www.stpga.com) or the attached biographical data.
2007 Southern Texas PGA Foundation Scholarships and Recipients
Tommy Aycock Scholarships
Named after a late Southern Texas PGA golf professional who won the STPGA Section Championship six times. Four Tommy Aycock Scholarships valued at $1,500 each were awarded to students residing in the Corpus Christi area. The recipients are:
• Katie Belser, Ingleside
• Dylan Davis, Portland
• IIeana Hinojosa, Portland
• Ryan Miller, Corpus Christi
Nicholas Battle Scholarships
Nicholas Battle was just becoming interested in the game of golf when he passed away in a tragic accident. Known as a good student and a caring friend, Battle’s early passion for golf, basketball, baseball and running matched his vivacious personality and bright smile. He was only 11 years old at the time of his passing— the Nicholas Battle Scholarships are named in his honor. The recipients of the 2007 Nicholas Battle Scholarships, valued at $3,000 each, are:
• Austin Griffin, Cuero
• Patrick Gunter, Bishop
• Melinda Uriegas, Edinburg
Joe Finger Scholarship
The Joe Finger Scholarship was created in 2004 through the fund raising efforts of Riverhill Country Club members and head golf professional Mark Caldwell. It is named in honor of golf course architect Joe Finger, the designer of Riverhill’s course and a resident of Kerrville until his death in 2003. The $1,000 Joe Finger Scholarship is awarded to a resident of Kerr County. This year’s recipient is:
• Christopher Hendrickson, Kerrville
George Hannon Scholarships
George Hannon Scholarships are presented to students whose primary residence lies with the Austin area (Travis County and the counties contiguous to Travis County). The George Hannon Scholarships are named for the former University of Texas golf coach who served as the president of the Southern Texas PGA in 1972-73 and was twice honored as the STPGA Golf Professional of the Year. Hannon is a member of the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame. There are three recipients of $2,500 George Hannon Scholarships this year. They are:
• Jacob Hanzel, San Marcos
• Kasey Terry, Cedar Park
• Kelsey Thompson, San Marcos
Hardy Loudermilk Scholarship
Hardy Loudermilk was the head golf professional at Oak Hills Country Club in San Antonio for many years. He was named the 1968 PGA of America Golf Professional of the Year while at Oak Hills, and, in 1968 and 1969, he served as the first president of the Southern Texas PGA Section. The $1,500 Hardy Loudermilk Scholarship is presented to a deserving student who resides in Bexar County or one of the seven counties contiguous to Bexar County. The recipient for 2007 is:
• Lindsey Merritt, Comfort
John Maca Scholarship
John Maca, elected to membership in the PGA of America in 1957, passed away in 2006. His career included a 25-year-stint as the head golf professional at Clear Lake Golf Club, and was the “Pro Emeritus” at Bay Oaks Country Club at the time of his death. Bay Oaks’ membership raised funds to create a new scholarship in his memory— the first-ever John Maca Scholarship, valued at $1,000, was awarded to:
• Carrie Hill, Beaumont
Todd Menefee Scholarships
The Todd Menefee Scholarships are named for a late member of the Southern Texas PGA. Menefee, a long-time head golf professional at San Antonio Country Club, expended considerable effort raising funds to create a junior golf program for San Antonio area youngsters. The scholarship was created from funds arising from his work. The two recipients of $1,500 scholarships for 2007 are:
• Charlotte Berson, Houston
• Kirstie Henning, Whitehouse
Joe Moore Scholarship
The Joe Moore Scholarship, valued at $1,000, is available to all STPGA Foundation Scholarship applicants. It is named for and was created by a San Antonio golfer whose history includes two San Antonio Amateur Championships and a role on a late-1940s NCAA Championship team at Louisiana State University. Moore, a member at San Antonio’s Woodlake Country Club, was the head golf professional at Lackland Air Force Base’s golf course when he retired in the 1980s and played on the PGA Tour for several years. The 2007 recipient is:
• Edward Cooney, Humble
Byron Nelson Scholarship
Named in honor of Byron Nelson, winner of four major championships and a record 11 straight tournaments in 1945, the Byron Nelson Scholarship was established in 2004 through the fundraising efforts of the members and head golf professional Mark Caldwell at Kerrville’s Riverhill Country Club, where Nelson is an honorary member. The $1,000 Byron Nelson Scholarship is awarded to a resident of Kerr County. This year’s recipient is:
• Marisa Mauldin, Utopia
Warren Smith Scholarship
Warren Smith was a head golf professional at Oak Hills Country Club in San Antonio and Cherry Hills Country Club in Colorado. The Warren Smith Scholarship was established through fundraising efforts of the members at Oak Hills Country Club and their head golf professional, Cary Collins. Recipients of the scholarship must reside in Bexar County or one of the seven counties contiguous to Bexar County. This year’s recipient of the $1,500 scholarship is:
• Louis Gonzales, San Antonio
Friday, June 15, 2007
World Golf Hall of Fame member, 2-time major championship winner, cofounder of Champions Golf Club, and golf wise man Jack Burke Jr. is the 2007 recipient of the PGA of America's Distinguished Service Award.
Burke was born in Houston, where his father was a head pro, in 1923. His father hired Jimmy Demaret as an assistant pro, and Demaret was young Jackie's babysitter. The two formed a tight bond and were lifelong friends, and Burke Jr. and Demaret founded Champions Golf Club together.
Burke won the Vardon Trophy in 1952 and Player of the Year in 1956. He played for five U.S. Ryder Cup teams and was captain of two others.
From the PGA:
"Jackie Burke is one of the most gifted players and ambassadors of the game, a man whose sage advice continues to inspire both professionals and amateurs everywhere," said PGA of America President Brian Whitcomb. "Perhaps Jackie's finest career moments are those spent outside the glare of the spotlight, where he has never wavered in promoting golf's values as a means of guiding young people to become better citizens. The PGA of America is proud to bestow the PGA Distinguished Service Award on such a stalwart servant to the game of golf."
The winner of the 1956 Masters and PGA Championship, Burke is one of eight children of Jack Burke Sr., a head professional at River Oaks Country Club in Houston, Texas, and winner of the 1941 Senior PGA Championship.
Young Jackie Burke was playing golf at age 4, breaking par by age 12, winning wagers against grown men and being challenged by the legendary Babe Zaharias of
Port Arthur, Texas, who joined him for occasional rounds at River Oaks.
Burke reaped the benefits of his father's lessons on the practice range and at the dinner table, which was an informal "classroom" for such teaching and Tour legends as Jack Grout, Harvey Penick, John Bredemus, Byron Nelson and Ben Hogan, who gathered regularly to trade stories and advice.
Jackie gave his first golf lesson at age 13, which was the beginning of a lifetime of both teaching and promoting the game.
"I've been in The PGA (of America) for 60 years, and to get acknowledged like this is to me a very good thing in my life and I'm very touched," said Burke. "I was blessed in my life to have learned the game from my father, who was the first [golf] teacher in Texas. He was the best teacher I ever heard give a lesson. I found that if you get around good teachers, you will remember what they say for a long time."
"I've always believed that young people should not have pressure on them to become someone they cannot be. Go out and play the game and enjoy it. If you play well, someone will find you with a trophy."
(Photo via PGA.com)
Thursday, June 14, 2007
A major hasn't been played in Texas since 1969. And that's not likely to change anytime soon, as the Dallas Morning News explains in this very interesting article (try bugmenot.com if you're asked for a password in order to log in).
Turns out that several DFW courses have tried, more recently than I was aware of, to get considered for U.S. Opens and PGA Championships. Without success, obviously. But making the effort is the first step.
When Dallas National was built a few years back, its ownership made no secret of the fact they wanted to bring a U.S. Open to Dallas. They found what designer Tom Fazio called "the greatest piece of land left in America close to a downtown," a dramatic property of the type preferred for majors, and Fazio set out to produce a very challenging layout that included the touches needed to host huge events (plenty of room for spectators and corporate tents, for example).
And Dallas National has talked to the USGA and PGA of America. The club will never get a U.S. Open without first hosting a smaller USGA championship (such as the Mid-Am or Junior Am), something the article says the club is reluctant to do. (Well, do you want the U.S. Open or not?)
Dallas National seems to have had more success in broaching the idea of hosting a Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup. The article says that Dallas National was a finalist to host the 2009 Presidents Cup, but eventually lost to San Francisco's Harding Park. However, "Dallas National was encouraged to apply for the 2013 Presidents Cup," the article states.
It's a good read that goes into a lot of detail about the hurdles Texas courses face in attracting a major.
Update: As a commenter pointed out, and as the DMN article points out, one of the problems Texas courses face is the weather. In the hot Texas summers it's tough to keep courses at peak condition. But greens shouldn't be a problem for many of the courses that would seek to host a major, especially newer ones. Many courses now have bentgrass greens that stay alive during the hot months only through the use of sub-air systems. Air conditioning for grass roots, basically.
Wednesday, June 13, 2007
What caught my eye in the press release, however, was something else.
About five years ago I was browsing Jack Nicklaus' Web site. I was in the section devoted to Jack's golf course design business and noticed listed under the "Coming Projects" heading a course at Horseshoe Bay. Horseshoe Bay Resort already has three courses, all of them designed by Robert Trent Jones Sr. I was unaware of plans for a fourth course designed by Nicklaus.
That course has been on hold ever since, as the resort waited for the right timing to start working on it. I've check in with Horseshoe Bay from time to time in the intervening years, but nothing new was ever known. The project was always still listed as "pending" on the Nicklaus Design site.
Well, that fourth course at Horsehoe Bay may just be a little closer to becoming a reality. The press release about Lee included this:
Lee’s responsibilities include managing overall golf operations at the resort for the three existing Robert Trent Jones, Sr. golf courses, Apple Rock, Ram Rock and Slick Rock, as well as the future Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course, Summit Rock.
So the resort is now openly talking about the coming Nicklaus course, and it even has a name. Summit Rock. Fits nicely with the existing RTJ courses.
Leave a comment if you've heard anything more about the Nicklaus/Horseshoe Bay course.
Richard was an All-American player at Stanford in the early 1990s and spent a couple years on the LPGA Tour. She joined the UT staff as assistant coach for the women's golf team in 1998, a position she held until 2000.
Since 2001 she has been the head coach of the Vanderbilt University women's golf team, leading that team to an SEC championship in 2004 and to two Top 10 finishes in nationals.
“We are so fortunate to welcome Martha Richards back to UT,” Plonsky said. “She is considered by many to be one of the finest women’s coaches in the nation. A tremendous recruiter, Martha built and developed the Vanderbilt golf program from infancy, and that program is now admired in the powerful SEC and nationally. She had to learn the hard way at Vanderbilt, building the program from scratch, and nothing could prepare her more professionally than doing just that.”
“I am thrilled to re-join The University of Texas coaching staff, and once again be a part of the great tradition of excellence that UT represents,” said Richards. “There is something very special about UT, academically and athletically. The level of commitment to women’s athletics here is unparalleled. With golf, you see that in the UT Golf Club, a world-class facility.”
Click here to watch a video message from the new Lady Longhorns golf coach.
(Hat tip to Tiffany Joh)
Richardson, TX – Will Doughtie, assistant golf professional at The Vaquero Club, outlasted Britt Patton, head golf professional at Dallas National Golf Club, in a sudden death playoff to claim the E-Z-GO Eastern Championship. Doughtie made a birdie on the second playoff hole to capture the Championship. Doughtie erased a five shot deficit heading into the final round by firing a 4-under par 68 (34-34) today. Doughtie finished the Championship with a two day total of 4-under par, 140. Patton finished the Championship in second place at 4-under par, 140 with two consecutive rounds of 70.
This 36-hole NTPGA major championship was the first of four individual stroke play events that comprise the Cleveland Golf / Club Car NTPGA Player of the Year Points Challenge, and serves as a qualifier for the 2007 Texas Joe Black Cup and James P. Jordan Cup teams. The E-Z-GO Eastern Championship featured a field of 103 NTPGA Members and Apprentices competing at Sherrill Park Golf Course (#1) in Richardson. The 6,950 yard, par 72 layout gave up five (5) scores under par following the second round of the event.
The golf professionals in the field competed for a share of the $33,500.00 purse with Doughtie taking home $4,000.00 for his first place finish.
1. Will Doughtie, The Vaquero Club, 72-68--140
2. Britt Patton, Dallas National GC, 70-70--140
3. Lindy Miller, Mira Vista GC, 70-71--141
4. Troy Lewis, Sky Creek Ranch GC, 70-72--142
5. Vince Jewell, Brook Hollow GC, 75-68--143
(tie) Larry Bryan, Big Spring CC, 68-75--143
(tie) Chad Williams, Corsicana CC, 67-76--143
Full results, plus senior division results, are available from the NTPGA.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
(a) Stacy Lewis, The Woodlands, 145
(a) Taylor Leon, Dallas, 145
Anna Acker-Macosko, Kerrville, 146
(a) Ashley Rollins, Austin, 146
The alternates are Cindy Currier (Austin, 147) and Claire Dury (New Zealand, 148).
Think of Stacy Lewis as a longshot possibility to win the Women's Open. A very long longshot, but someone whom it wouldn't be shocking to see in contention. She recently won the NCAA women's national championship, shooting 66 on the final day to do so (nobody else could break 70 that day), and earlier this year had a very strong showing at the first LPGA major, the Kraft Nabisco Championship, finishing in the Top 10.
Lewis is playing collegiately at the University of Arkansas; Leon is leaving the University of Georgia after her sophomore season to turn pro.
Other Texans who qualified at various locations included Nicole Melton (San Antonio), Katie Futcher (The Woodlands) and Kelli Kuehne (Dallas).
Monday, June 11, 2007
Trinity -- Charlie Holland of Dallas had a two shot lead going into the final round of the 2007 Texas State Amateur, and even though he ended up winning by three shots, it was not as easy as it might appear. The busiest people at Whispering Pines Golf Club on Sunday were the volunteers updating the leader boards on the golf course as the lead – and leader – seemed to change on almost every hole. But in the end it was Holland who managed his game and his nerves to claim his first State Amateur Championship. In a very unique moment in Texas Amateur history the president of the TGA, who presents the trophy to the champion, happened to be Charlie's father Malcolm, the current president of the Texas Golf Association.
Holland shot a final round 75 for a 72 hole total of 286, two under par. Tied for second at one over par were Robby Ormand of Austin, who was runner-up in the 2004 State Amateur, and Andrew Landry of Grove. Ormand was tied for the lead on a couple of occasions in the final round, but made a double bogey on 16, and then bogey at the last hole for a final round 74. Landry had also climbed the leader board and was only one shot back going to the final hole, but his approach shot hit the front edge of the green and rolled back into the water, leading to a double bogey and a final round 72.
"I was watching (the leader boards) and knew what was going on," Holland said. "I knew it was close, and when I three-putted 12 for par I got a little nervous."
After a birdie on 14 and a bogey on 15 he was back in the lead, but faced a 10 foot putt to save par on 16. "Making that putt was huge for me," Holland said. "I knew I was up by at least two on 18, but I was shaking on that second shot."
The 18th hole is a 464 yard par four with an approach entirely over water to a severely sloping green. "I hit a seven iron and sort of hit it fat and thought I might have hit it in the water."
That was not the case as the ball landed safely on the green, hole high some 20 feet away. Two putts later he had earned the title of Texas State Amateur Champion.
The final stretch of holes at Whispering Pines lived up to its billing, with birdies and bogies all around. Terrence Miskell, two off the pace going into the final round, again struggled early, fought his way back, then found the water on the 15th hole and made double bogey. He ended up with a final round 77 (290) to finish alone in fourth. Zack Reeves, the 2005 State Amateur runner-up, had a final round 72 (291) to finish fifth.
The Top 10
Charlie Holland, Dallas, 69-70-72-76--287
Andrew Landry, Groves, 78-70-69-72--289
Robby Ormand, Fort Worth, 69-74-72-74--289
Terrence Miskell, New Braunfels, 67-72-74-77--290
Zack Reeves, Arlington, 76-72-71-72--291
Dillon Gooch, College Station, 76-73-75-68--292
Jhonattan Vegas, Austin, 73-73-75-71--292
Jon Mathias, San Antonio, 71-73-69-79--292
Justin Davidson, Trophy Club, 74-74-72-72--292
Will Griffin, San Antonio, 75-75-72-70--292
Visit the Texas Golf Association Web site (www.txga.org) for more info and complete results.
Tuesday, June 05, 2007
Whispering Pines Golf Club in Trinity, located approximately 30 miles northeast of Huntsville, will be hosting the 2007 Texas Amateur Championship presented by Guaranty Bank. Conducted by the Texas Golf Association, this year's championship will be played from Thursday, June 7, through Sunday, June 10.
More than 650 entries were received this year with 23 players fully exempt from qualifying based on past performance. The remaining hopefuls battled it out in 18 qualifiers held across the state during the months of April and May, vying for one of the 121 available spots in the elite 144-player starting field.
Format for the Championship is 72-holes stoke play. All contestants will play 18-holes on both Thursday, June 7, and Friday, June 8. After 36-holes the field will be cut to the low 54 players and ties heading into the final two rounds on Saturday and Sunday.
The Texas Amateur has produced a notable list of winners in its 98-year history and has long been considered to be the state's most coveted amateur title. Over a dozen current PGA Tour and Champions Tour players have their names engraved on the H.L. Edwards Memorial Trophy, including Mark Brooks, Charles Coody, Ben Crenshaw, Bob Estes, Bruce Lietzke, and Scott Verplank.
This will be the third TGA competition to be held at Whispering Pines. Previously, the club was the site of the 2004 and 2006 Texas Shootout, the association's annual "Ryder Cup-style" event in which the eight best players from North Texas square off against their counterparts from South Texas. In addition, the club hosted the 2005 Big 12 Championship and is also home to The Spirit, a biennial international amateur event that features the world's best men and women golfers representing 24 countries from six continents in team and individual competitions.
Opened in 2000, Whispering Pines debuted in third place in Golf Digest's annual ranking of America's Best New Private Courses. Designed by Chet Williams of Nicklaus Design, the club continues to shine in the national spotlight. Recently, the same publication came out with their list of America's 50 Greatest Golf Retreats and the 800-plus course ranking panelists voted Whispering Pines as the 11th best, ahead of such notable clubs as Muirfield Village and Castle Pines.
2007 TGA Texas Amateur Notes
- PAR AND YARDAGE - From the back tees, Whispering Pines can stretch to 7,480 yards with a par of 36-36 - 72.
- USGA COURSE/SLOPE RATING - Whispering Pines has a USGA Course/Slope rating of 76.2/143, the fourth highest course rating in the state.
- YOUTH VERSUS EXPERIENCE - On opposite ends of the age spectrum are Brenden Redfern, of Austin, the youngest player in the field at age 15, and Tom McGraw, of Montgomery, who at age 56 will be carrying the torch for the senior players.
- H.L. EDWARDS MEMORIAL TROPHY - The winner of the Texas Amateur receives custody of the H.L. Edwards Memorial Trophy, named in honor of Harry Lee Edwards, the "Father of Golf in Texas." Edwards earned the nickname because he helped to establish the TGA in February of 1906, served as its first president and won the inaugural Amateur Championship. Additionally, Edwards was also a founding member of Dallas CC and BrookHollow GC.
- TEXAS AMATEUR ON THE WEB - For scores, pairings, and the latest Texas Amateur information, log on to the TGA web site - txga.org
- TGA INDIVIDUAL STATE CHAMPIONS IN THE STARTING FIELD - Six players can boast of having won a TGA individual statewide championship. They are Mike Booker ('03 Mid-Am), Alan Clark ('06 Mid-Am Match Play), Alan Hill ('99 and '04 Mid-Am), Jon Mathias ('06 Mid-Am), and Nick Williams ('06 Public Links). Kevin Schultz (2005) is the only past Amateurtitleholder in this year's field.
- THE 2006 TEXAS AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP - 18-year-old Paul Haley, a graduate of Highland Park H.S. who is now attending Georgia Tech, rolled in a tricky 20-foot putt for birdie on the 72nd hole at Dallas Country Club for a final round 68 and a two-stroke victory over 15-year-old Cody Gribble, of Dallas, and two-time TGA State Player of the Year Terrence Miskell, of New Braunfels.
Hunter Mahan, 73-63-136
Justin Leonard, 70-67-137
Ryan Palmer, 69-68-137
Jaxon Brigman, 71-68-139
Stuart Deane, 73-66-139
Failed to Qualify
Tommy Armour III, 69-71-140
Chris Cureton, 69-71-140
Corey Pavin, 72-68-140
Shawn Stefani, 74-66-140
(a) Brian Noonan, 71-70-141
(a) Bruno Buccolo, 73-69-142
(a) Cory Whitsett, 74-68-142
Richard Barcelo, 72-71-143
Andrew Dresser, 76-67-143
(a) William Kropp, 70-74-144
(a) Conrad Shindler, 67-77-144
Dustin Risdon, 73-72-145
Chris Wheeler, 72-73-145
(a) Jesse Barnsley, 74-72-146
(a) Steven Yawn, 71-75-146
Brett Callas, 74-73-147
(a) Adam Wennerstrom, 77-70-147
(a) Mitch Cohlmia, 73-75-148
Jeb Stuart, 76-73-149
Ryan Nelson, 77-73-150
Mark Smith, 75-77-152
(a) Mark Macejewski, 79-77-156
Greg Chalmers, 68-WD
Luke Lane, 70-WD
Sunday, June 03, 2007
The San Antonio newspaper had a couple articles the other day, one in the Business section and one a column by Richard Oliver. The Business article detailed that building was finally taking place on the site location - a month ahead of a deadline the developers had to meet to keep a non-annexation agreement in place.
Even though the city has been pressing for work to go forward, issues with the Marriott parent company have delayed developer Forestar Real Estate, formerly Lumbermen's Investment Corp., said John Pierret, executive vice president of Forestar development.
Marriott had faced some setbacks because of high oil prices following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, Pierret said. The company also wanted to have full construction drawings done of the 1,000-room JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort and Spa before work began.
The hotel originally was planned with 800 rooms. The plans were expanded last year.
Pierret said he had hoped work would start last year. Marriott chose not to comment at Friday's news conference and funneled media questions through Pierret.
The JW Marriott, Marriott's high-end brand, will be one of the largest hotels in San Antonio when completed in January 2010. It will feature 138,000 square feet of meeting space, a 40,000-square-foot ballroom and a 26,000-square-foot spa. The grounds of the hotel will mirror the natural Hill Country landscape to provide a habitat for deer, birds and other wildlife.
Along with the hotel, two 18-hole courses also will be completed by 2010 to be a part of the Tournament Players Clubs network that hosts many PGA Tours. Golf industry legends Pete Dye and Greg Norman will design the courses.
Construction on the TPC golf courses was never going to start until construction on the hotel was under way; now that that's the case, construction on the Greg Norman course should begin in earnest within a month (the Pete Dye-designed course is a little behind Norman's).
Columnist Oliver writes on the long wait for action, and the impact this development is likely to have not only on San Antonio -but also the PGA Tour:
When it comes to the Cibolo Canyons PGA Tour project on the county's far north side, the scenario hasn't wavered much over the past several years.
Hurry up and wait.
But today, as dirt is finally turned in earnest on building the 1,000-room hotel, with construction on a Greg Norman-designed course set to begin by next month, it's fair to trust that the PGA Tour won't be employing the same game plan.
San Antonio has waited long enough.
The city's Valero Texas Open is currently idling as part of the tour's lightweight fall schedule, but with vibrant hopes that a slot in the coveted spring portion of the calendar will open up soon.
Friday's official announcement that grading and blasting are under way on the location for the exclusive Marriott, with peripheral construction on the golf properties pending, should carry seismic impact all the way to the tour's Florida offices.
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem and his staff, in public and private, have expressed aspirations that the San Antonio project will be a major jewel in the tour's necklace of luxury complexes strung from coast to coast.
Indeed, the Texas Open, contractually guaranteed to occupy the next prime schedule opening, knows its future is strongly linked with a move to the TPC layouts.
Saturday, June 02, 2007
The club had to beat Dallas Athletic Club and Colonial Country Club in back-to-back matches just to get into the league play championships. Here are the semifinals and finals sorted out:
Semi Final Matches
Twin Creeks Country Club (Austin ) def. Shady Oaks Country Club ( Fort Worth ), 26 points to 10
De Cordova Bend Country Club (Granbury) def. Woodforest Golf Club (Montgomery), 20 points to 16
De Cordova Bend Country Club (Granbury) def. Twin Creeks Country Club (Austin ), 24.5 points to 11.5
Congratulations to De Cordova Bend team members: Kevin Grimes (captain), Lelan Chiles, Jamie Gallman, Jason Berry, Jim Gallman, Corky Dawson, Jerry Johnson, Billy Smartt.
Hey, don't feel bad for Trip. There are plenty of great golf accolades on his resume' too: 2-time Walker Cupper, runner-up to Tiger Woods at one of Woods' U.S. Am wins, plenty of local, state and regional amateur victories, and wins in some big national amateur tournaments.
Trip has chosen a different path than his more famous siblings. He's still a great golfer - he teamed with Terrence Miskell to win a TGA tournament just a couple weeks ago, and he's a strong candidate to make the Walker Cup team this year - but his primary focus these days is on business.
Trip runs a money management company in the Metroplex, and he's very successful at that, too. Golf World has a nice profile of Trip, his golf and his business - you can read it online here.