Around the Green
The latest golf-related news, notes, and feature stories from the TGA.
John Grace Claims Inaugural Texas Super Senior Championship
FAIR OAKS RANCH—After an even-par round of 72 on the final day of the Texas Super Senior Amateur Championship, John Grace triumphed over Jody Vasquez of Aledo in a sudden death playoff to claim the title in the Super Senior Division.
Despite being five strokes off the lead with eight holes to play, Grace closed in on Vasquez by converting two clutch birdies on the back nine. Vasquez, who posted the 54-hole tournament’s low score in Wednesday’s second round with 69, continued his solid play on route to a 1-over-par 73 to finish tied with Grace at 1-under 215 for the championship.
Grace and Vasquez headed to the 399-yard par-4 ninth hole for the playoff. Both competitors found the fairway with their tee shots and both proceeded to find the difficult ninth green in regulation. Grace, rallying from his strong play on his back nine, stuck his approach to approximately 8 feet and proceeded to convert the birdie putt to claim the championship.
With his victory in the inaugural Super Senior Amateur Championship, Grace becomes the first player to have won state championship titles in four different state championships – some on multiple occasions, including the Texas Amateur (1994), Mid-Amateur (1991, 1992, 1993 and 1994) and Senior Amateur (2010).
Entering the final round one shot off the pace, Grace had a fairly simple approach to his final round.
“All I try to do is play each shot, and each hole, the best I can,” said the Texas Golf Hall of Fame member.
In the Legends Division, San Antonio’s Bob Hullender claimed a wire-to-wire victory with a final round score of 2-over-par 74. Hullender’s steady play proved too much for his fellow competitors in the Legends Division as he bested the field posting a three-day total of 12-over 228. Hullender converted four birdies Thursday and battled through a string of consecutive bogeys to finish eight shots ahead of the field.
Hullender, who has previously claimed the Texas Amateur (1996) and Texas Senior Amateur (1992, 1994 and 2000), reflected on this victory.
“It’s an honor for me after playing with the Texas Golf Association for a lot of years,” he said.
At 77 years old, Hullender becomes the first competitor to claim the Legends Division with the introduction of the State Super Senior Amateur Championship.
The Texas Golf Association would like to thank the membership and staff at Fair Oaks Ranch Golf and Country Club for their hospitality and contributions to the success of the first Texas Super Senior Amateur Championship.