Thursday, May 28, 2009

LPGA Confirms Dates, Location for Season-Ender in Texas

There have been many trickle-down effects of the current financial woes around the world, including some lost tournaments and lost sponsors on the world's professional golf tours.

When the Feds announced a fraud investigation of a division of Stanford Financial several months ago, that affected both the PGA and LPGA tours, which each had events for which Stanford was a title sponsor.

The PGA Tour almost immediately removed Stanford from the name of its St. Jude tournament in Memphis. The LPGA, not having the deep pockets of the PGA Tour, faced a bigger problem.

The LPGA had created a year-end championship tournament, announced it would be played in Houston - the specific course to be named later - and said it would be called the Stanford Financial Tour Championship.

Suddenly, the LPGA was without a sponsor for its tour championship, and still without a course.

But no more. Like the PGA Tour, the LPGA has made the decision to simply dump Stanford as the title sponsor and go it alone in 2009. The now-named LPGA Tour Championship also now has a golf course to call home, too.

Houstonian Golf and Country Club will be the site of the LPGA Tour Championship from November 19-22. The field of 120 will be cut to the low 70 after 36 holes, then to the low 30 after 54 holes.

Tickets go on sale June 1. Those who purchase a full-priced weekly grounds pass ($60) during June will receive a second one free. Daily tickets are $20. Call 877-LPGA-TIX (574-2849) to order, or visit

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

STPGA Selects Joe Black Cup Captain

From the STPGA:

Jeff Strong, the head PGA golf professional and general manager at Eagle Pointe Golf Club in Mont Belvieu, has been named Captain of the 2009 Southern Texas PGA Texas Joe Black Cup Matches team.

The 2009 Texas Joe Black Cup Matches will be hosted by the Southern Texas PGA on Oct. 26-27 at Miramont Country Club in Bryan. The Ryder Cup-style tournament began in 1981 and pits a team of Southern Texas PGA Professionals against a team of Professionals from the Northern Texas PGA. The event is named in honor of Joe Black, a native of Snyder, Texas, who was then serving as president of the PGA of America. Black is currently living near Austin.

The Nothern Texas PGA won the 2008 Texas Joe Black Cup Matches at Lufkin’s Crown Colony Country Club by a 14-1/2 to 9-1/2 point margin, and holds a 14-13-1 overall lead in the series.

“It’s a real honor to be named Captain of the Southern Texas PGA team, “ said Strong. “It would mean a lot to me and to the STPGA to win. We all want the STPGA to be known as the best Section in the PGA of America, and winning the Texas Joe Black Cup Matches is part of that.”

“There are many excellent golfers in our Section, so I know our team will be capable of winning,” added Strong. “The home team always has a little bit of an advantage in the matches because its members know the course a little better than the visitors. But the NTPGA will have a good team, so we’ll just let our play do our talking.”

Strong, who has been at Eagle Pointe since 1999, has been a member of the PGA of America since 1996. He served as Chairman of the Southern Texas PGA’s Tournament Committee in 2007 and 2008, and was the STPGA’s Bill Strausbaugh Award winner (in recognition special effort toward club relations and building the image of the game of golf and the golf professional) for 2008 He was also the STPGA Merchandiser of the Year for Public Facilities in 2008, an honor he had previously earned in 2005. He was also the 2007 STPGA Eastern Chapter Golf Professional of the Year.

The two teams in the Texas Joe Black Cup Matches consist of nine professionals who win spots on the teams through year-long “points” competitions, a senior representative, the respective Section president ands a Captains’ pick on both sides. The makeup of both teams will be determined following the completion of the respective Section Professional Championships.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Guatamalan Wins on Adams Tour

Pablo Acuna played college golf at the University of Houston. As a pro, the Guatamalan golfer has played on the Tour de las Americas in South America, and on the Nationwide Tour.

This week, he is the winner of the Adams Golf Pro Tour Series adidas Fort Worth Classic in Lipan, played at SugarTree Country Club.

Acuna pulled away for a four-stroke victory with rounds of 67, 72, 64 and 65. The 268 total was 12-under par, and he earned $15,000 for first place.

Top Finishers
Pablo Acuna, Guatemala, 67-72-64-65--268
Justin Bates, Allen, 67-68-69-68--272
Shaun Melville, Lubbock, 67-69-68-68--272
Matthew Rosenfeld, Plano, 65-69-67-71--272
Michael Smith, Lafayette, La., 65-72-69-67--273
Michael Connell, Dallas, 70-62-70-71--273
Mitch Hendon, Burleson, 70-67-66-70--273
Full Results

The Adams Tour next plays the MBP Merrill Lynch Mid-Season Championship, June 11-14 at The University Club in Baton Rouge, La.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

U.S. Women's Open Local Qualifying - Austin

Qualifiers and alternates from the Austin local for the U.S. Women's Open.

Onion Creek Country Club
Christi Cano, San Antonio, 68
Ashley Knoll, The Woodlands, 71
Janice Olivencia, Puerto Rico, 71
Megan Vaughn (a), Lake Village, Ark., 71
Patricia Beliard, Houston, 72
Sarah Beth Davis (a), Victoria, 72
Michaela Cavener, Tulsa, Okla., 72
Mallory Fraiche (a), Metairie, La., 73
Tracy Stanford, Midland, 73
Kate Ackerson (a), Allen, 74
Christina Lecuyer, Canada, 74
Shawna McIntyre, The Woodlands, 74
Stephanie Dukes, North Richland Hills, 75
Gabriella Dominguez (a), Chilton, 76
Juli Erekson, Chicopee, Mass., 76
Mariah Montoya (a), Lubbock, 76
Amy Ruengmateekhun (a), Garland, 76
Paloma Martinez (a), Mexico, 77
Kirsten Spittler (a), Austin, 77
Alternates: Sydney Cox (a), Edmond, Okla., 77; Carrie Morris, Tyler, 78; Michelle Castillo, San Antonio, 78; Ana Carrillo, Mexico, 78

Friday, May 22, 2009

Kullberg Claims STPGA Major

The Callaway Tradition Championship is one of the Southern Texas PGA's "majors." Here is the tournament report from the STPGA:

Mike Kullberg, assistant professional at Blackhorse Golf Club in Cypress, won his second Southern Texas PGA Callaway Tradition Championship in a row, taking the 2009 title with a score of 5-under-par 68-71—139 at Houston’s Royal Oaks Country Club.

Kullbeg won the 2008 Callaway Tradition Championship with an identical score at Wolfdancer Golf Club in Bastrop. This year’s win is his second in a "major" Southern Texas PGA championship, and earned a first-place check of $3,000.

Kullberg edged out Ryan Polzin, a Royal Oaks assistant, for the 2009 victory. Polzin finished second at 70-71—141.

Kullberg had entered the second round with a 2-stroke lead on Polzin and the two battled all day long. Polzin finally caught up with Kullberg when the latter suffered a three-putt bogey on Royal Oaks 16th hole and then moved a stroke ahead with a birdie on 17.

Polzin's tee shot on 18 strayed left and his approach found a bunker to the left rear of the green, leaving a near-impossible up-and-down. When Kullberg planted his approach shot within two-putt range, Polzin was forced to try the impossible, and the result was a triple-bogey and a two-shot win for Kullberg.

"It feels pretty awesome to win two of these in a row," said Kullberg. "I just kind of hung in there during the second round and tried to stay focused. When I took birdies on 9 and 10, I thought maybe I could go all the way, but when I had the bogey on 16 and Ryan caught up, I thought, 'Uh oh, here we go.' But when I saw Ryan go in the bunker on 18, I knew I'd have a chance to at least get into a playoff."

With Polzin taking home a runner-up share of $2,100, Tim Thelen, director of instruction at The Traditions at Texas A&M in College Station, took third place with a score of 72-71—143, worth $1,700 in winnings.

Charlie Epps, director of The Golf Academy at The Houstonian Golf and Country Club, won the Senior Division of the 2009 STPGA Callaway Tradition Championship with a score of 74-68-142, earning $1,250 for the victory.

Steve Veriato of San Marcos finished in second place at 76-70-146 for $900 in winnings, followed by Houston’s Carl Baker, Jeff Cooper, head golf professional at Sunset Grove Country Club in Orange, and Jimmy Odell, assistant professional at Spring’s Gleannloch Pines Golf Club, who were knotted in a third-place tie at 148. The third-place trio won $491.67 each.

Top Finishers
Mike Kullberg, Houston, 68-71-139
Ryan Polzin, Houston, 70-71-141
Tim Thelen, College Station, 72-71-143
Lonny Alexander, New Braunfels, 73-71-144
Ray Richmond, Spring, 73-71-144
Tony Johnson, Kerrville, 73-71-144
Full Results

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

U.S. Open Local Qualifying - Prosper

Qualifiers and alternates from the U.S. Open local qualifier in Prosper:

Gentle Creek Golf Club
Adam Meyer, Waco, 63
Jeremy Alcorn, Irving, 67 - Q
Timothy Vasquez, Aledo, 67 - Q
Jamie Amoretti, San Antonio, 67 - Q
Michael Connell, Houston, 69 - Q
Cody Gribble, Dallas, 69 - Q
Dean Kennedy, Vancouver, BC, 69 - Q
Brock Mulder, Dallas, 69 - Q
Benjamin Clark, San Angelo, 69 - Q
Alternates: Tom Hoge, Fargo, ND, 69; David Muttitt, Plano, 70

Meyer's 63 is a new competitive course record at Gentle Creek.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

TGA State Four-Ball Results

Tournament report from the Texas Golf Association:

The Woodlands TX – 49 teams arrived Friday morning at The Woodlands Country Club, Player Course in hopes to leave Sunday with the title, 2009 TGA 4-Ball Champions. And in the end, it was team of Seth Thornton (Houston) and Nick Kondra (W. Columbia) who did just that.

Sunday's final round began with no clear cut favorite in sight. Regardless of the impressive 10-under par, 62 posted by Thornton and Kondra on Saturday, 6 teams still loomed in the background all within 4 strokes of the lead. The picture became even less clear after the turn as four teams turned to the back nine all within 2 shots of the including a tie for the overall lead between second round leaders Thornton and Kondra and fellow competitors John Bearrie and Scott Maurer.

Bearrie and Maurer made their big move on the front nine by posting a 5-under par 31 to put them in a tie for first with Thornton and Kondra. However, a costly double bogey on the 597 yard, par 5 12th hole put them in a hole in which they would not be able to recover, finishing in a tie for 4th place at 15-under par with Randy Lance (The Woodlands) and David Ward (Dallas). In the end it was the consistent play of Thornton and Kondra that brought them to victory finishing the tournament with a 4-under par 68 to put them at 18-under par for the championship.

Defending champions Rob Couture and Blanton Hansen, who also started the day just three strokes off the lead made it interesting by making the turn just two strokes off the lead but couldn't make a big enough run to catch the Thornton/Kondra duo and finished tied for second place with Aaron Hickman (Houston) and Dru Fenimore (Dallas) who played steady golf all weekend firing rounds 67, 67, and 66.

The Texas Golf Association Staff would like to express its sincerest thanks to the entire staff of The Woodlands Country Club. Without their efforts, the 2009 TGA 4-Ball Championship would not have been as memorable as it was.

Top Finishers
Seth Thornton/Nick Kondra, 68-62-68--198
Rob Couture/Blanton C Hansen, 70-63-67--200
Aaron Hickman/Dru Fenimore, 67-67-66--200
Scott Maurer/John Bearrie, 66-67-68--201
Randy Lance/David Ward, 67-66-68--201
Full Scores

Kevin Stadler Leads Nelson Qualifiers

The Monday qualifier for the HP Byron Nelson Championship was played on, well, Monday, and Kevin Stadler led the field, earning one of the four available spots in the Nelson.

The four golfers who Monday qualified are:

Kevin Stadler, 33-33--66
Jaxon Brigman, 31-36--67
Steve Allan, 31-37--68
Dave Schultz, 32-36--68

Here is the recap from the Northern Texas PGA:

MCKINNEY, Texas - The 2009 HP Byron Nelson Championship Open Qualifying Tournament was conducted at Stonebridge Ranch Country Club (Dye Course) in McKinney. 101 players competed for four qualifying spots. The field was comprised of PGA TOUR, Nationwide Tour and Champions Tour members, as well as 50 players that advanced to Open Qualifying from Pre-Qualifying.

The four qualifiers were Kevin Stadler of Reston, Virginia, Jaxon Brigman of Frisco, Texas, Steve Allan of Melbourne, Australia, and Dave Schultz of Fort Worth, Texas. Stadler shot the low round of the day with a six-under par 66, followed by Brigman who shot a five-under par 67.

There was a hole-by-hole sudden death playoff with seven players who shot four under par 68 competing for the final two spots. The players in the playoff were Steve Allan of Melbourne, Australia, Dave Schultz of Fort Worth, Texas, Robert Gates of Spring, Texas, Patrick Sheehan of Oviedo, Florida, Todd Fischer of Reno, Nevada, Conrad Shindler (a) of Westlake, Texas and Shaun Melville of Lubbock, Texas. Allan and Schultz both birdied the first playoff hole to capture the final two (2) spots in the 2009 HP Byron Nelson Championship.

The 2009 HP Byron Nelson Championship will be conducted on May 21-24 at the Four Seasons Resort and Club in Irving, Texas.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Closing 64 Secures Adams Tour Victory

Adam Meyer of Fort Worth shot a sizzling 64 in the final round of the Adams Golf Pro Tour Series' WinStar World Casino Golf Championship on Saturday, surging to the 1-stroke victory.

The tournament was played at WinStar Golf Course in Thackerville, Okla.

Meyer's 64 gave him the close win over Randy Lowry of Houston, who closed with a 70. Meyer finished at 16-under 272, earning $15,000 for the victory. That paycheck moved Meyer to second place on the Adams Tour money list.

Top Finishers
Adam Meyer, Fort Worth, 70-70-68-64--272
Randy Lowry, Houston, 68-66-69-70--273
Shaun Melville, Lubbock, 71-66-68-69--274
Jerod Turner, Hurst, 65-70-69-70--274
Chris D. Thompson, Independence, Kan., 70-72-68-66--276
Brett Callas, Houston, 71-68-69-68--276
Brice Garnett, Gallatin, Mo., 67-68-69-72--276
Full Results

The Adams Golf Pro Tour Series heads to Dennis this week for the Adidas Fort Worth Classic.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

U.S. Open Local Qualifying - El Paso

Results from the El Paso local qualifier for U.S. Open aspirants. Only those who advanced to sectionals, plus alternates, are listed.

Vista Hills Country Club
Armando Inman, Mexico, 66
J.P. Hayes, El Paso, 68
Alternates: Alex Quiroz, Mexico, 69; Javier Quevedo, El Paso, 69

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

U.S. Open Local Qualifying - San Antonio

Results from the San Antonio local qualifier for the U.S. Open; qualifiers advance to the sectional stage. (Only qualifiers and alternates are listed.)

Briggs Ranch Country Club
Brad Lardon, College Station, 68
Michael Mezei, Canada, 69
Matthew Smith (a), Australia, 69
Gary Woodland, Topeka, Kan., 69
Britt Martin, Kerrville, 70
Eric Moore, San Antonio, 70
Alternates - Chris Massoletti, Chico, Calif., 70; Santiago Quirarte, Mexico, 71

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

U.S. Open Local Qualifying - Austin

Results from the U.S. Open local qualifier in Austin on Tuesday, May, 11.

Fazio Canyons Course/Barton Creek Country Club
Brian Marini, Austin, 67
Conrad Shindler (a), College Station, 68
Brad Ott, Frisco, 69
Brett Spencer (a), Dallas, 69
B.J. Staten, Dallas, 69
Alternates: Zach Zachry, Arlington, 69; Corbin King, Round Rock, 70

U.S. Open Local Qualifying - Dallas National

It's that time of year again, the time when dozens of local qualifiers are held around the United States for the U.S. Open. Golfers advancing out of the local stage move to the sectional qualifiers.

Several local qualifiers take place in Texas, and we'll be posting the results as they come in. Below is the first list of qualifiers. Only players who qualified, plus alternates, are listed.

At Dallas National Golf Club
Mike Brisky, Southlake, 69
Mark Walker, Hurst, 72
Colby Beckstrom, Colleyville, 72
Rob Couture, Dallas, 72
Anthony Broussard, Beaumont, 73
Jaxon Brigman, Frisco, 74
Alternates: David Jenkins, Prairie Village, Kan., 74; Casey Clendenon, Houston, 74

Texas Open Monday Qualifier Results

The PGA Tour Valero Texas Open is in San Antonio this week for its final go-round at La Cantera's Resort Course (in 2010 the tournament will move to the Greg Norman-designed TPC course now in the final stages of construction).

On Monday, a field of golfers gathered at Comanche Trace in Kerrville for the Texas Open Monday qualifier. Four spots in the field were up for grabs, and here are the golfers who grabbed them:

Robert Gates, Spring, 64
Chris Baryla, El Paso, 65
Steve Dartnall, Coral Gables, Fla., 66
Todd Fischer, Livermore, Calif., 67

Fischer defeated Derek Lamely of Fort Meyers, Fla., in a playoff for the last available spot.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Registration Begins for 2009 Texas Women's Open

The 2009 Texas Women's Open will be played June 24-25 at Eastern Hills Country Club in Garland. And registration is now open. Registration fees are as follows:

  • Amateurs - $150.00
  • LPGA Members and PGA Members and Apprentices - $200.00
  • Non-affiliate professionals/Futures Tour players - $250.00

The field is limited to the first 120 entrants. Registration deadline is 5 p.m. on Friday, June 19. For more info, visit

Past champions in the Texas Women's Open include Babe Zaharias, Betsy Rawls, Beverly Hanson, Polly Riley and Betty Jameson.