Hal Wright grabs first-round lead at Louisiana Senior
Hal Wright
Hal Wright

LAKE CHARLES, La. — Hal Wright of Shreveport fired a four-under par 68 in the first round of the 2015 LGA Senior Amateur Championship at Lake Charles Country Club and leads Gayle Sanchez of Baton Rouge and Bill Stevens of Lake Charles by one stroke. Competitors took advantage of ideal scoring conditions on Thursday, and there were a total of nine scores under par. The next 36 holes should be exciting, with fourteen players within five shots of Wright’s lead after first round play.

Wright started his round at 9:54 a.m. and opened with a par on the par 5 1st hole. He then made back-to-back birdies on the par 4 2nd hole and the par 3 3rd. After a par on the par 4 4th hole, Wright made back-to-back bogeys. After two more pars, he made a birdie on the par 4 9th hole, making the turn at one-under par 35. Wright’s back 9 was a streaky tale of 3s. He made three consecutive pars (holes 10, 11, 12), three consecutive birdies (13, 14, 15), and three consecutive pars again (16, 17, 18). His back nine total of 33 capped off the low round of the day, a four-under par 68.

Gayle Sanchez is a seasoned competitor who has played in every USGA Championship with the exception of the Junior Amateur (he wasn’t playing golf at that age) and the newly implemented Four-Ball Championship (2015 was the inaugural event). His first round 69 included four birdies and a bogey (35/34). Bill Stevens, a member at The National GC of Louisiana, shot an even par 36 on his front nine and three-under par 33 on his back nine.

Other scores under par include: Robert Shelton of Baton Rouge (70), Page Breaux of St. Gabriel (70), Bret Pinson of Baton Rouge (70), Randy Tadlock of Lake Charles (71), Stan Humphries of Monroe (71), Ronnie Averett of Loranger (71). Tim Rusk of Prairieville made the sole eagle of the day on the par 5 11th hole.

As previously mentioned, this year’s Championship is being held at Lake Charles Country Club. It was gorgeous golf weather on Thursday, with temperatures reaching the upper 80s, a slight breeze and little to no humidity. The golf course drew rave reviews from this field of the top Senior players in Louisiana. The Lake Charles Country Club course played to a par of 72 at approximately 6,577 yards on Thursday. Friday’s play will begin at 7:30 AM off #1 tee.

The LGA also conducts a Super Senior Championship for those competitors 65 years of age and older. Super Seniors played from a forward set of tees at approximately 6.013 yards. Glenn Granger of Sulphur leads the Super Senior Division after firing a four-under par 68. Granger, a member of Lake Charles CC, shot a 35 on the front 9 and a 33 on the back nine in a round that included five birdies and one bogey.

The toughest hole on Thursday was the par 3 6th hole. The hole was playing 193 yards with a difficult hole location on the back right of the green close to a water hazard. The scoring average for the 6th hole was 4.012. The easiest hole of the day was the par 3 14th hole which was playing 160 yards.

ABOUT THE Louisiana Senior Amateur

Eligibility: Entries are open to any Louisiana resident (as of at least 90 days prior to the Championship) who is an amateur golfer (as defined by the USGA) holding membership in a LGA member club in good standing (2017 club and individual dues must be paid). Entrants must be 50 years of age and possess a certified USGA Handicap Index of 15.0 or less.

Format: Overall Championship will be conducted over 54 holes. In addition to the Overall Championship, there is a Super Senior division for those participants who are 65 years of age and older. Super Seniors will play from a forward set of tees and compete only in the Super Senior division. Any Senior over 65 may elect to play in the Overall competition but, in doing so, is precluded from participation in the Super Seniors division. For the Senior Amateur, the Super Senior division is a 36 hole event with a discounted entry fee.

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