Regional Mid-Amateurs Set for March 24-26
The Texas Golf Association’s 2023 men’s regional tournament series continues this month with the North and South Mid-Amateurs. The championships will be held concurrently from March 24-26.
The North Mid-Amateur will be played at Rockwall Golf & Athletic Club in Rockwall. The Clubs of Kingwood’s Forest Course in Kingwood will be the host site for the South Mid-Amateur.
Situated along the northeastern edge of Lake Ray Hubbard, Rockwall Golf & Athletic Club (formerly The Shores Country Club) was originally designed by Ralph Plummer and opened in 1979. Jeffery Blume supervised a comprehensive remodel of the course in 2012. The Forest Course at The Clubs of Kingwood, considered the most challenging of the five layouts at the 90-hole facility, opened in 1992 and was designed by the architectural firm of Finger Dye Spann, Inc.
First played in 2003, Regional Mid-Amateur entries are open to male amateur golfers who are 25 years of age or older by the tournament start date, have an up-to-date WHS Handicap Index® not exceeding 8.4 issued through a member club of the TGA, and reside in the region relative to their respective championship. The delineation between the North and South regions is the 31st parallel in Salado.
Both championships are conducted using the same competitive format. The starting field of 84 players will play 54 holes of individual stroke play over three days with no cut. In addition to crowning an overall champion, special recognition will be given to the low mid-master (player aged 40 and older). The top three finishers and ties in each event, as well as low mid-master, will earn exemptions into this year’s Texas Mid-Amateur to be held Sept. 29-Oct. 1 at Midland Country Club in Midland.
Starting times and pairings for the first and second rounds will be posted on the TGA website no later than March 21. Live scoring updates and daily recaps will also be available online once the action gets underway from Rockwall Golf & Athletic Club and The Clubs of Kingwood.
At last year’s North Mid-Amateur, hosted by Paris Golf & Country Club in Paris, Jason Schultz of Allen won the overall division in a playoff over Scott Maurer of Dallas. The two finished tied at 7-under-par 203 at the end of regulation play. Schultz also claimed low mid-master honors. Daniel Depasquale of Austin posted a 54-hole total of 6-over 222 at Forest Creek Golf Club in Round Rock to capture both the overall and mid-master titles at the 2022 South Mid-Amateur.
In Memoriam: Diane Dill, 1936-2023
Rose Diane Dupree was born on July 21, 1936, in Gilmer, Texas to Jake and Ruth Dupree. As the only child of Jake and Ruth, she was the apple of their eyes. Diane loved athletics and the outdoors. She played football in the front yard with the boys in the neighborhood, always being the quarterback. She played baseball and tennis, and at the age of 14, she discovered true excitement in golf. She would play with her parents and other kids who were around.
Diane attended Gilmer schools while growing up. She was in the Gilmer Buckeye marching band, where she played trombone. Gilmer is home to the cherished tradition known as the East Texas Yamboree. It is a good-old fashioned small-town festival. It typically draws over 100,000 people to the small community. The annual four-day event is held each October to celebrate the yam cash crop. In 1953, Diane was selected to be Queen Yam XVI. She presided over the Queen’s coronation and the Queen’s parade and all the festivities during the Yamboree. The floats are built by Upshur County Schools. The float that wins First Place is the Queen’s Float in the parade on Saturday. Diane always loved this fabulous experience in her young life and being Queen Yam. She loved her East Texas roots.
After graduating from Gilmer High School, Diane attended the University of Texas. She was a member of Gamma Phi Beta Sorority and earned a Bachelor of Business degree.
After Diane graduated from the University of Texas, she started playing golf with local friends. Wanting to be more competitive, she started taking lessons from a golf pro at the Humble Country Club in Pasadena. He helped refine her swing. His name was Bill Dill. Not only did Diane love golf, she loved and adored Bill Dill. The feeling was mutual, and Diane and Bill married in June 1963. Although Bill was 11 years older than Diane, it was a match made in heaven. They were inseparable and shared a love of hunting, fishing, traveling, cooking and of course, golf. Together they became the stars of Bentwater Country Club. Many of their closest friends are gathered today in Diane’s honor.
The team of Bill and Diane taught so many to play and enjoy golf. Diane’s amateur legacy is impressive, as she had 14 holes in one and played in two US Women’s Amateurs. She won six Women’s Senior Strike Play tournaments and captured the Super Senior and Legends Divisions three times. When Diane could no longer play because of a back injury, she volunteered for the Women’s TGA and attended the USGA Rules School. Volunteering for the TGA allowed her to be on the courses with young ladies at the collegiate and professional level. Diane volunteered at over 20 events and helped the TGA conduct top tier women’s championships. Diane was a TGA Director on the Women’s Committee, as well.
In 1958, Diane began her career with Humble Oil, which became Exxon. She joined the Marketing Department. Who could have been better to be an ambassador for the company than a talented, organized, and friendly young lady with a degree in business from the University of Texas?
In 1977, Diane became an analyst in administration where she handled management development and compensation.
Diane retired in 1988, after 30 years of service and received many professional accolades over those years.
In her leisure time, Diane found joy and great passion in golf. Her competitive spirit, drive and determination made her a shining star for others to follow. Her devotion to golf brought respect and honor to her while impacting many others along the way.
Dear Diane lived a dream life, a full life by every measure. She was showered with God’s countless blessings of having doting and loving parents, having a marriage to her wonderful soul mate, Bill Dill, living an honored professional life, and being surrounded with loving family and friends.
Diane is survived by her stepson Johnny Dill and his family Tara Ward, Brian Stewart, and daughter Ava, stepdaughter Mary Lou Dill, and is predeceased by stepdaughter Billie June Wilson, cousins Mike and Cathy Bullard, Courtney Duperier and husband Chris, Ross Bullard and their families, cousins Paul and Beverly Rowntree, Christopher and Brandi Rowntree, Michael and Alicia Rowntree, Matthew and Rachel Rowntree and their families.
May the Lord Bless you and keep you, Diane.
To make a donation in the memory of Diane Dill, click here.
Regional Four-Balls Set for Feb. 25-26
The Texas Golf Association’s 2023 men’s tournament schedule kicks off with the North and South Regional Four-Ball Championships. The season openers will be held concurrently from Feb. 25-26.
The North Four-Ball will be played on The Courses at Watters Creek’s Traditions Course in Plano. Vaaler Creek Golf Club in Blanco will be the host site for the South Four-Ball.
Opened in 1986, the Traditions Course at Watters Creek was originally designed by Robert von Hagge and Bruce Devlin. It was remodeled by D.A. Weibring and Golf Resources Group in 2012. Vaaler Creek Golf Club, located off U.S. Highway 281 between Austin and San Antonio, opened in 2009 and was designed by Michael Lowry.
First played in 2003, Regional Four-Ball entries are open to two-player teams of male amateur golfers with each member of the team having an up-to-date WHS Handicap Index® not exceeding 8.4 issued through a member club of the TGA and residing in the region relative to their respective championship. The delineation between the North and South regions is the 31st parallel in Salado.
Both championships are conducted using the same competitive format. The starting field of 44 teams (88 players) will play 36 holes of four-ball stroke play over two days with no cut. Regional performance points, which are applied to the yearlong North and South Player of the Year races, are awarded to the top five team finishers.
Starting times and pairings for the first round will be posted on the TGA website no later than Feb. 21. Live scoring updates and daily recaps will also be available online once the action gets underway from The Courses at Watters Creek and Vaaler Creek Golf Club.
At last year’s North Four-Ball, three teams were tied for the lead at 12-under-par 132 after 36 holes of regulation play at Tempest Golf Club in Gladewater. Bobby Massa and Christopher Wheeler would go on to capture the title with a birdie on the third hole of a sudden-death playoff. Ryan Haselden and Matt Williams carded rounds of 68-68 to win the 2022 South Four-Ball at Sterling Country Club in Houston. Their 36-hole, 8-under 136 total was good for a one-shot victory over Jason Coffin and Vincent Martino.
Victoria CC to host Texas Girls’ Invitational
ADDISON – The Texas Girls’ Invitational travels to Victoria Country Club for the first time in the 14th edition of the event. Set for Feb. 18-20, this will be the first major championship of the 2023 LJT season.
The Texas Girls’ Invitational will feature a 76-player, girls-only field. Over the past decade it has become one of the top junior events in Texas on the schedule. The inaugural playing of this event featured 12 players back in 2010, but now boasts one of the most competitive fields each year.
In 2019, the event became a 54-hole championship held in February with World Amateur Golf Ranking points up for grabs. Additionally, the tournament also offers numerous AJGA Performance Stars to the top finishers including 12 for the champion. Prior to 2019 the event was 36 holes and annually held in the fall.
This is the first LJT event to be played at Victoria CC. Originally built by E.L. Grunder as a nine-hole course in 1924, the current eighteen-hole layout was redesigned by Joe Finger. The course is considered one of the finest in South Texas and tips out at just under 7,000 yards.
“We are very excited to host the Texas Girls’ Invitational at Victoria Country Club for the first time as we welcome many of the best girls in the state,” Tournament Coordinator Katie O’Connell said. “The field for this event continues to get stronger each year. We are excited to crown our first major champion of the year.”
Austin’s Farah O’Keefe won by an impressive seven strokes last year at the Texas Girls’ Invitational by finishing two-under par. A field of rising stars and previous LJT winners will take on the Victoria CC this year and look to etch their name on the Nez Muhleman trophy.
The ’Nez Muhleman trophy is named after Inez “’Nez” Muhleman of Houston. She was long known for her dedication to junior golf.
Past champions of this girls-only championship include Kaci McCartan, Lakareber Abe, Maddie McCrary, Vanessa Ha, Jaravee Boonchant, Anne Chen, Makenzie Niblett, Hailey Jones, and Tillie Claggett.
This is the first Major Championship for the girls of the 2023 LJT season. For more information on the Texas Girls’ Invitational, please click here.
Jimmy Demaret Junior Classic Set for Feb. 4-5
BURNET – The Legends Junior Tour will head to Delaware Springs Golf Course for the first time as it hosts the Jimmy Demaret Junior Classic on February 4-5.
Routinely played in February, last year’s edition was postponed to April due to icy conditions. The weather forecast looks much better this time around.
“This is the first LJT event we’ve hosted at Delaware Springs, so we are excited to bring our players there,” said Adam Schulte, LJT Tournament Manager. “Their staff has been wonderful to work with and the course looks great. Fingers crossed the weather forecast stays a bit warmer this year.”
The event is named after one of Texas’ golf legends, Jimmy Demaret, who won three Masters Tournaments and 31 PGA Tour events in a career that spanned from 1935-57. He became the first three-time Masters champion after his victory in 1950 and was elected to the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1983. The inaugural Jimmy Demaret Junior Classic was held at Onion Creek Club in 2008.
Scheduled for 36 holes of individual stroke play, the Jimmy Demaret Junior Classic features 84 golfers playing in three different divisions: Boys 15-18, Girls 12-18 and Boys 14 & Under. This is the second event of the 2023 season following the Winter Classic held at Dallas Athletic Club on Jan. 21-22.
Last year, Austin’s Sterling Hurd fired rounds of 73-71 and won the Boys 15-18 Division by one stroke. Austin’s Sydney Givens claimed the Girls 12-18 Division with rounds of 75-73, while Jack Clancy won the Boys 14 & Under Division in a playoff.
Both Hurd and Givens are in the field again this year to defend their respective titles.
Other past champions of the Jimmy Demaret Junior Classic include Cooper Dossey, Philip Barbaree, Cole Hammer, Annika Clark, Maddie Szeryk, Tayler Termeer, Mac Meissner, Macy Fox, and Libby Thomas.
Delaware Springs Golf Course, located in Burnet, originally opened in 1992 and was designed by Dave Axlander and Dan Proctor. The par-72 layout tips out at over 6,800 yards.
Tee times begin Saturday at 8 a.m. The final round takes place on Sunday, Feb. 5.
For more information about the Jimmy Demaret Junior Classic, click here.
Medalist Gulf Coast Series Returns to Greater Houston Area
The Texas Golf Association is excited to announce it is bringing more competitive amateur golf tournaments to the Greater Houston Area with a slate of two-day, 36-hole, individual stroke-play events called the Medalist Gulf Coast Series.
This is not a new series of tournaments, by any means. It had been a popular tour in Houston for two decades. The major change now is the TGA will be conducting these events in conjunction with the other TGA Medalist Series in North Texas and the Hill Country.
Under the previous name of the Medalist Golf Association, this series of tournaments originally launched in 2000 by prominent members of Champions Golf Club in Houston, including Mike Burke, son of legendary Champions Golf Club co-founder Jackie Burke, and Robert McKinney, a longtime amateur stalwart who won the 90th Texas Amateur in 1999. The administrators of the Medalist Golf Association, which grew to include more Champions Golf Club members and others outside of the club, conducted that series through 2020.
“We started this because at the time, there wasn’t a place for the working man to play competitively on the weekends,” Mike Burke said. “There were TGA events, but many of those were played during the week. Then there were qualifiers for the Houston City Amateur. That was about it. Houston needed more competitive golf opportunities.”
Thanks to the Burkes, Champions Golf Club, and now the TGA, that’s exactly what is happening.
The 2023 Medalist Gulf Coast Series begins Feb. 18-19 at the Panorama Golf Club in Conroe. Male golfers with a WHS Handicap Index® of 15.0 or less are eligible to compete. There are no regional restrictions with Medalist events; qualifying golfers from any part of the state can play in any Medalist Series event. The second tournament is March 11-12 at Quail Valley Golf Course’s La Quinta Course in Missouri City. The final Medalist Gulf Coast event this year is April 1-2 at Atascocita Golf Club in Atascocita.
“This has been a long time coming,” said John Cochran IV, the TGA’s South Texas Director of Competitions. “The guys at Champions did a great job with the Medalist Golf Association, and the TGA is honored and excited to use our resources to take these events to a wider audience and new golf courses.”
The TGA’s Medalist Series in the Hill Country and North Texas began in 2006. Those events were largely modeled after the format that Mike Burke, McKinney, and their group of passionate competitive golfers used in Houston. Positioned intentionally at the beginning of the calendar year, Medalist events are a perfect way for golfers to knock off some winter rust and get tuned up for bigger competitions in the spring, summer, and beyond.
At its height, more than 300 Houston-area golfers played in Medalist Golf Association events. The association held a season-ending Tour Championship at Champions Golf Club for the top players based on a point system. It was quite a reward for great play. The top 30 competitors in a season-long points race got to tee it up at Champions, the cathedral of golf in this part of the world that hosted the 1967 Ryder Cup (captained by Ben Hogan), the 1969 U.S. Open, five PGA Tour Championships, and the 2020 U.S. Women’s Open.
Everyone involved with the Medalist Series loved the idea of a Tour Championship event for the leading points earners. So much so, Mike Burke said Champions Golf Club will continue to play host to that season-ending championship. More details on the Tour Championship will be released soon.
Founded in 1957 by Jackie Burke, who in 1956 won the Masters and PGA Championship, and three-time Masters champion Jimmy Demaret, the north Houston club has been synonymous with golf excellence since its inception. In addition to the litany of notable professional events, Champions Golf Club also has played host to the 1993 U.S. Amateur, the 1998 and 2017 U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur, and the Champions Cup, a longstanding annual two-man team amateur tournament.
“My grandfather was a pro, but for the past 65 years, he’s been working with amateur golfers,” said Dean Burke, Mike Burke’s son and the current president of Champions Golf Club. “He’s all about amateur golf.”
As a young, up-and-coming golfer, Dean Burke played in plenty of Medalist Golf Association events, won a couple of them, and then helped manage the operation. Like his grandfather and father, Dean Burke is fully behind the Medalist Gulf Coast Series.
“With the TGA’s platform, I think it can really take off,” he said.
To wit, the field for first tournament at Panorama Golf Club filled up in less than five days. There’s currently a waiting list to get in. There is still plenty of room in the other two events, however.
TGA President Jonathan Shipley, a member at Champions Golf Club and a former Medalist Golf Association winner, couldn’t be more excited about the developments.
“We finally brought it home with the TGA,” Shipley said. “Now we’re under a bigger banner with more resources and greater reach. It’s going to be great. Mr. Burke has always been about amateur golf and amateur golfers. He was so proud when Champions started our Medalist Golf Association.”
Along with the Tournament of Champions, another facet that will continue is the coveted “Red Headcover.” The brainchild of Mike Burke, he wanted winners in his Medalist Golf Association tournaments to receive something unique, something different than another typical golf trophy. While watching the Tour de France one summer day, seeing the yellow jersey that the current leader wore resonated with him. Burke loved the idea of one rider wearing the yellow jersey because he was leading the tour, and now everyone was chasing him.
“So out on the golf course, everyone is chasing the player with the red headcover,” Burke explained. “The headcover travels from winner to winner, but each winner also receives a replica headcover they get to keep.”
Mike Burke also is responsible for coming up with the unique name of the association. He tells a great story from one year when he played in a Greater Houston City Amateur Monday qualifier.
“I thought I was ready and prepared for that qualifier, but I wasn’t,” he said. “I needed more reps, more tournament rounds. That’s when I started calling the best amateurs in the city and asked them if I started a tour, would they play in it? To a man, they all said yes. So, I needed a name for this proposed tour. At that City Am Monday qualifier, I turned in a score of 77, and man, I was really sweating it out. I didn’t think I played well enough to qualify. That was my only goal: to qualify for the Houston City Am.
“I’m standing there by the scoreboard, and this player walks by on the way to the scoreboard and says, ‘Who was the Medalist?’ This player shot a great score and thought he had a chance to win that qualifier. He did not show up just to qualify; he was trying to win, to be the Medalist. Here I am just trying to keep it together and qualify. This guy wanted to know who was the Medalist. That’s when it hit me. The Medalist is what you want to be. The Medalist is the winner. So that’s what we named our association.”
In addition to the competition and opportunities to get in early season tournament rounds, the camaraderie between players is a major draw to these events, everyone involved agreed. The events basically are scaled-down versions of TGA Championships. It’s serious tournament golf – scorecards are signed and attested, etc. – but it’s a less stressful atmosphere than one would find at a regional or statewide championship.
One of the other perks of the Medalist Gulf Coast Series is getting to experience new places. Andy Hydorn, a former Champions Golf Club member who for years helped Mike Burke, McKinney, and the Medalist Golf Association with numerous logistical, technical, and public relations assistance, believes the opportunity to play a wide variety of golf courses added another layer to the beauty of these events.
“One of the best things the TGA has done for me is introduce me to different parts of the state,” said Hydorn, the runner-up at last summer’s Texas Senior Amateur. “The Medalist Gulf Coast Series will do that for others, too.”
To learn more about the Medalist Gulf Coast Series and register for events, click here.
Leslie Henry Nominated to Serve on USGA Executive Committee
LIBERTY CORNER, N.J. (Dec. 7, 2022) – Leslie Henry of Houston, Texas; Bryan Lewis of South Haven, Mich.; Michael McCarthy of San Francisco, Calif.; and Jeff Sluman of Hinsdale, Ill.; have each been nominated to serve a three-year term on the USGA Executive Committee, highlighting the USGA Nominating Committee’s 2023 slate.
In addition, Courtney Myhrum of Pittsburgh, Pa., has been nominated to serve a second three-year term on the USGA Executive Committee, a volunteer group of 15 people that provides strategic and financial oversight as the Association’s policy-making and governance board.
“I look forward to welcoming these talented, respected and passionate leaders to our Executive Committee,” said USGA CEO Mike Whan. “Along with all my USGA teammates, I am excited to begin working together with them to strengthen and advance our great game.”
Henry is the immediate past president of the Texas Golf Association (TGA), the first female to hold that role. She became a member of the Women’s Texas Golf Association (WTGA) board of directors in 2012 and played an integral role in the process of merging the WTGA with the TGA in 2014. She joined the TGA Board of Directors that year and was elected as the TGA’s first female officer in 2016. She played tennis collegiately at Louisiana State University and earned her law degree from the South Texas College of Law. Henry took up golf at the age of 35 and has since won the Greater Houston Women’s Senior City Championship four times and has played on the Texas Cup South Team seven times. She has also qualified for the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur and the U.S. Senior Women’s Amateur, and recently competed in the World Amateur Golfers Championship in Malaysia after winning the Nationals in Orlando, Fla.
A litigator of more than 25 years, Henry divides her time between the Houston and New Orleans offices of Adams and Reese, LLP. She formerly served on Adams and Reese’s Executive Committee, which oversees the firm’s strategic operations across its 21 markets. She currently serves on the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. Henry also works closely with young attorneys through Adams and Reese’s mentorship program.
Lewis has been a USGA committee member since 1998 and is a recipient of the association’s Ike Grainger Award, which recognizes 25 years of volunteer service. He has served on the Rules Committee for 84 USGA championships, four Masters Tournaments and the 2021 Walker Cup Match. He has served on the USGA Rules of Golf Committee since 2017 and has been an instructor at USGA/PGA Rules Workshops since 2019. Lewis played in the 1980 U.S. Junior Amateur and was a member of the Western Michigan University varsity golf team. He also served for four years on the Golf Association of Michigan Board of Governors.
Professionally, Lewis spent 32 years at Whirlpool Corporation before retiring in 2017 as an information security manager. He was a nationally recognized expert in identity and access management. His governance experience includes 22 years on the South Haven (Mich.) Public Schools Board of Education, eight of those as board president.
McCarthy is a lifelong golfer, competing at an early age in Northern California junior events. He earned his B.A. in history from the University of California, Los Angeles, where he was a member of the 1988 golf team that won a national championship. McCarthy currently serves on the board of his hometown San Francisco Golf Club, and he was a longtime board member of the First Tee of San Francisco, where he helped start the program in conjunction with the restoration of Harding Park Golf Club. Still competitive, McCarthy qualified for the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship in 2010 and has won 12 club championships.
McCarthy, whose career at Franklin Templeton Investments spans more than 30 years, currently serves as executive vice president and chief investment officer for the Franklin Equity Group. He has oversight of the San Mateo (Calif.) and New York-based investment teams who manage Franklin’s equity and hybrid strategies, along with Franklin Equity Group’s research team. He is also the lead portfolio manager for the Franklin Small Cap Growth strategy. McCarthy is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charterholder.
Sluman, who played in the 1980 U.S. Open as an amateur and turned professional later that year, joined the PGA Tour in 1983 and PGA Tour Champions in 2007. He has 18 professional victories, including the 1988 PGA Championship. Sluman has four top-10 finishes in the U.S. Open, including runner-up in 1992 at Pebble Beach. In 2019, Sluman became the 21st player in history to play more than 1,000 events on the PGA Tour and PGA Tour Champions, and has recorded six victories on each tour. He was a two-time PGA Tour Policy Board member and two-time Champions Tour Policy Board member and served as an assistant captain for three U.S. Presidents Cup and two U.S. Ryder Cup teams.
Sluman, who played at Florida State University, is a member of his alma mater’s Hall of Fame, as well as the New York State Golf Association Hall of Fame in recognition of his stellar amateur career in his home state, punctuated by a victory at the 1978 New York State Amateur.
Current USGA Executive Committee members include Myhrum; Tony Anderson of Chicago, Ill.; Chuck Brymer of Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.; Sinclair Eaddy Jr., of Baltimore, Md.; Cathy Engelbert of Berkeley Heights, N.J.; Kendra Graham of Winter Park, Fla.; Kevin Hammer of Boynton Beach, Fla.; Deborah Platt Majoras of Cincinnati, Ohio; Tony Petitti of Irvington, N.Y.; Sharon Ritchey of Longboat Key, Fla.; and Fred Perpall of Dallas, Texas, who was previously nominated to become the USGA’s 67th president.
Per the bylaws of the association, Henry, Lewis, McCarthy and Sluman will each serve a three-year term beginning in 2023, with the potential to be elected for a second and final three-year term in 2026.
If elected, the new four members will assume seats vacated by retiring members Thomas Barkin of Atlanta, Ga.; Paul Brown of Brookeville, Md.; Nick Price of Hobe Sound, Fla.; and Stu Francis of Hillsborough, Calif., who is concluding his three-year term as USGA president.
The USGA Annual Meeting will take place Feb. 25, 2023 in Napa, Calif.
About the USGA
The USGA is a nonprofit organization that celebrates, serves and advances the game of golf. Founded in 1894, we conduct many of golf’s premier professional and amateur championships, including the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open Presented by ProMedica. With The R&A, we govern the sport via a global set of playing, equipment, handicapping and amateur status rules. The USGA campus in Liberty Corner, New Jersey, is home to the Association’s Research and Test Center, where science and innovation are fueling a healthy and sustainable game for the future. The campus is also home to the USGA Golf Museum, where we honor the game by curating the world’s most comprehensive archive of golf artifacts. To learn more, visit usga.org.
46th Texas Stableford Handicap Set for Nov. 11-13
Riverhill Country Club in Kerrville will be the host site for the 46th Texas Stableford Handicap. The championship will take place from Nov. 11-13.
Founded in 1974, Riverhill Country Club was designed by Texas Golf Hall of Famers Joe Finger and Byron Nelson, who is also a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame. Built on a bluff overlooking the Guadalupe River, the 7,137-yard, par-72 course features tree-lined fairways, natural water features, and dramatic elevation changes which provide sweeping views of the surrounding countryside. The iconic Central Texas club, a popular and frequently visited venue, has been the site of a wide array of TGA championships since its opening.
“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to return to Riverhill Country Club for one of our most exciting and unique events,” said Read Langhenry, TGA Tournament Director. “The club has been an incredible supporter of amateur golf through the years, and we are grateful to be back at this wonderful facility for what is sure to be another enjoyable championship experience.”
First held in 1976, the Texas Stableford Handicap is open to male amateur golfers who have a WHS Handicap Index® of 20.0 or less, will have reached the age of 21 on or before the tournament start date, and are current Texas residents.
The two-player team points competition is contested over 54 holes using the Modified Stableford scoring system. Under this format, players are awarded points based on their performance on each hole, with the aim of accumulating enough points to equal or better a preestablished goal. The number of points awarded on each hole is directly related to the score posted in comparison to par– more points given to better scores – corresponding to the following table: 8 for a double eagle, 6 for an eagle, 4 for a birdie, 2 for par, 1 for bogey, and 0 for double bogey or higher.
Teams in the starting field are preassigned to one of four flights based on the players’ combined Low Handicap Index™ over a 11-month period ending on Nov. 2.
Each team has a preset daily points goal derived from a percentage of the sum of the players’ Course Handicap™. After the completion of each round, the team quota is adjusted by one-half of the excess or deficit to determine the next day’s points goal. The total number of points earned for 54 holes will be used to determine final standings in each flight. The overall winner will be the team with the most plus (or fewest minus) points, regardless of flight.
At last year’s championship held at Riverhill Country Club, Curtis Harris of Eastland and Stephen Knight of Fredericksburg accumulated 3 points more than their team quota over three days for an impressive wire-to-wire victory. The duo was the only team to end the championship in positive territory.
Once the action gets underway from the 46th Texas Stableford Handicap at Riverhill, log on to the TGA website for starting times, live scoring updates, and daily recaps.
Texas Shootout Set for Oct. 29-30
Grand Pines Golf Club at Bentwater Yacht & Country Club in Montgomery will be the host site of the 20th Texas Shootout. The 12-man team competition between top-ranked amateur golfers from North and South Texas will take place Oct. 29-30. This will be the club’s first time hosting a Texas Golf Association championship.
“We are thrilled to be able to conduct this year’s Texas Shootout at Grand Pines Golf Club,” said Justin Guthrie, TGA Tournament Director. “We know the club and its membership will provide an exceptional experience for the players, and the strategic course, with its many risk-reward options, will be the perfect stage for the exciting team match-play format.”
Grand Pines Golf Club, which made its debut in 2005, is the newest of the three courses at Bentwater, joining the Weiskopf Course (opened in 1989) and the Miller Course (1992). Designed by Jeffrey Blume, Grand Pines is situated on a pristine 182-acre site highlighted by dramatic elevation changes, natural water features, and densely wooded areas. The 7,100-yard, par-72 course is acclaimed for its distinctive mounding and bunkers that complement the topography and impact shot values, along with large, undulating greens and collection areas.
First conducted in 2003, the season-ending Texas Shootout is by invitation-only and features the top 12 players (eight mid-amateurs and four seniors) from North Texas squaring off against their counterparts from South Texas in a Ryder Cup-style competition.
Players earn their way onto their respective teams by accumulating points throughout the year in designated TGA regional and statewide tournaments, as well as USGA national championships. North and South regions are defined as either being above or below the 31’ parallel. (The city of Salado, which is located approximately halfway between Austin and Waco, sits on the dividing line.)
Of the eight mid-amateurs (age 25 and older) selected from each region, four come from the TGA Statewide Player of the Year point standings and four from the Regional Player of the Year point standings. The top four North and South senior players (age 55 and older) are chosen based on the Statewide Senior Player of the Year point standings.
The player roster for the 2022 North and South Texas Teams is listed below. Lewis Stephenson of Burleson and Pat Youngs of San Antonio will serve as playing captains for the North and South sides, respectively.
The format for the Shootout includes foursome, four-ball and singles matches. A total of 24 matches will be played over the two days. Each match is worth three points – one point each for front nine, back nine and 18 – making for 72 available points. The first team to accumulate 36.5 points is the winner.
At the 2021 Texas Shootout, hosted by Royal Oaks Country Club in Dallas, the North Texas Team defeated the South Texas Team, 38.5-33.5. It was the second win in a row for North Texas which now leads the overall series, 10-9.
Once the action gets underway from the 20th Texas Shootout at Grand Pines Golf Club, log on to the TGA website for match play pairings, starting times, live scoring updates and daily recaps.
2022 TEXAS SHOOTOUT NOTES:
North Texas Team: Colby Amparan (Fort Worth), *Neal Barfield (Dallas), Rob Couture (Celina), *John Derrick (Waco), Kevin Doskocil (Benbrook), *Chuck Gardner (Texarkana), Scott Maurer (Dallas), Seth Murphy (Flint), Josh Pasco (Midland), Jason Schultz (Allen), *Lewis Stephenson (Burleson), Team Captain, and Trey Todd (Abilene).
South Texas Team: Casey Carnes (Schertz), Dan Depasquale (Austin), Clay Fullick (Conroe), Austen Fulmer (Cedar Park), Andrew Grice (Austin), Joey Gullion (Spring), *Andy Hydorn (Houston), Randy Lance (Spring), Padden Nelson (Houston), *Sandy Pierce (Houston), *Jed Shreve (The Woodlands), and *Pat Youngs (San Antonio), Team Captain.
*Indicates senior player representative
Schedule of Events:
Friday, October 28
11:30 a.m. – Registration
12:00 – 12:30 p.m. – Practice Rounds (South)
12:40 – 1:10 p.m. – Practice Rounds (North)
6:00 p.m. – Cocktail Reception & Match Draw
Saturday, October 29
7:30 – 8:15 a.m. – Foursome Matches
12:00 – 12:50 p.m. – Four-Ball Matches
6:30 p.m. – Player’s Dinner
Sunday, October 30
7:30 – 8:58 a.m. – Singles Matches; Awards presentation following conclusion of play.
Fresh Look Coming for Corpus Christi Country Club
By Adam Rohrbough, TGA
In celebration of its centennial anniversary, Corpus Christi Country Club will unveil its newly renovated, 18-hole championship course in late October.
For 41 years, the club resided on Nueces Beach, but in 1963 it purchased more than 150 acres of land about 12 miles south. That’s where Robert Trent Jones designed the classic 18-hole course that has resided there for the past 59 years.
In 2017, Ham Rogers, a member of the Club, spearheaded an effort to renovate the course. A vote was passed in 2021, and the project began in February.
Chet Williams Design was tabbed to complete the project. Williams has designed or renovated many notable courses including Whispering Pines, Houston Oaks, Traditions Club at Texas A&M, Royal Oaks Country Club – Dallas, Dallas Athletic Club’s Blue & Gold Courses, and many more. Additionally, Sanders Golf has overseen the construction on the project.
“The scope of the renovation was to redo all the greens from scratch, new bunkers, and new grassing of fairways,” said Brent Blackburn, Head Golf Professional at CCCC. “In addition to that, Chet Williams proposed a slight reroute to bring whatever interests that we have here into play.”
Below are sketches of each hole for the renovation.
As with any renovation, challenges will arise. The team of Chet Williams Design and Sanders Golf has found a solution to every obstacle, though.
“Adding that interest being on coastal plain was probably the biggest challenge for Chet’s team,” said Blackburn. “The golf course had no drainage at all. The only drainage we had was surface drainage and a canal that ran through the golf course. I think working with any interest that included the canal, Chet was able to take advantage of it.”
A renovation can also often present challenges to the club and its’ membership.
“Are there some challenges and frustrations? Of course,” Blackburn said. “But I think it’ll be a night-and-day difference for us. It was a welcomed upgrade, for sure.”
Included in the project are 18 new greens. Each complex is different and will provide players with a variety of looks from hole to hole.
“What we had before were 18 greens that were very similar,” Blackburn said of CCCC prior to the renovation. “Chet has done a masterful job of going from very little variety to where every hole is different. That is a testament to his design and his experience.”
Corpus Christi Country Club has always been a fun member course, but it did gain 120 yards total from the renovation. Those who play the course can expect a much more playable and enjoyable look at the course with great conditions.
“Overall, it should be a fantastic experience for anyone who comes down to play it,” Blackburn said. “Down here, we have lots of wind and the course plays to that. But 6,700 yards for us can feel a lot longer for sure.”
As the TGA Member Club finishes the renovation project next month we are so proud of Corpus Christi C.C., its’ members, and everyone involved throughout the process. We look forward to seeing the way this new course flourishes over the coming years.
Check out the photos below for a closer look at the construction and design process.