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Three teams tied for 36-hole lead at The Devlin
02 Jun 2018
by Pete Wlodkowski of AmateurGolf.com

see also: The Devlin, Secession Golf Club

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Co-leaders Walter Todd, Jr. (L) and Jordan Sease
Co-leaders Walter Todd, Jr. (L) and Jordan Sease

Editor's note: AmateurGolf.com Founder Pete Wlodkowski is on site and competing in The Devlin this week.

BEAUFORT, South Carolina (June 2, 2018) — Due to a heavy thunder and lightning “cell” passing directly over the area after play today and knocking out power, today’s report from Secession GC will be brief. We can, however, report on a close race as the first two rounds of Best-Ball concluded. And we had an Ace today, which is always fun.

First round leaders Walt Todd Jr. and Jordan Sease (both AmateurGolf.com members) Followed up their first round 65 with another solid round of 66 to stand in a three-way tie with two other teams whose solid play today allowed them to join in the fun of sleeping on a lead.

Will Osborne and partner Jay O’Jibway jumped into that trio by tying for low round of the day today, an 8-under 64. The Ft. Worth, TX duo claim to be ready for tomorrow’s grueling “count both balls” format.

Also at 131 is the team of Charles Alexander (Tampa, FL) and Noi Chay (Cary, NC) - they matched the 67-64 put up by Osborne and O’Jibway.



In the Saber (over age 50) division, Tournament Commiittee member Michael Wharton-Palmer (Texarkana, AR) and Brian McGahey (Hamburg, NY) continue with their blistering pace keeping it at 15 under par 129 for the tournament by adding a 65 on top of their first round 64. That’s amazing golf; the senior setup is shorter but still requires plenty of ball striking skill — and you have to hole miles of putts on greens running close to 14 on the stimp meter.

Giving chase (4 shots back) is the team of Secession member Kevin Allis and his partner Craig Ostrom. The Baltimore team should be tough in the combined format on Sunday — local knowledge means a lot here.

TOURNAMENT NOTES

— Ace Maker: Beau Davis of Ft. Worth, fresh off a win at the Shady Oaks club championship two weeks ago — remember it was Ben Hogan’s home Club? — carded an ace on the second hole today. Unfortunately, his team went one-six after taking a double on the tough third hole.

— The Sh—tty Shoe Award — given by locker room attendant Tully to the person who enters so many marshy hazards that their shoes come back weighing more than they did (by double) went to The Pete and Pete team (Wlodkowski and Davison). We won’t say which of the “Petes” walked 150 yards through a hazard on number five and still made par.

ROUND ONE RECAP

BEAUFORT, South Carolina (June 1, 2018) -- A year ago, Hurricane Irma wreaked havoc on the Southeast, and The Devlin tournament committee wisely did a "pre-emptive strike" and cancelled their annual Four-Ball invitational. It was the right call.

Bruce Devlin
Bruce Devlin
Rather than wait a full year to play the next installment of the event -- which honors legendary Australian golfer and course architect Bruce Devlin -- the tournament was moved forward to June and will likely remain their in future years. And while Irma's heavy rains caused for unplayable conditions in 2017, they did not destroy the course or it's gorgeous bunkers. Rather, the rain showed that Mr. Devlin's idea for sod-walled bunkers composed of artificial turf was spot-on. They withstood the heavy rains and look gorgeous (at least from the outside looking in).

The fairways are perfect, and they absorbed several inches of rain which 2018's first named storm dumped on the area just prior to tournament week. But it's the fabulous greens that left all players talking. They are, simply, some of the best many have ever putted. The fastidiously maintained surfaces are Hybrid Bermuda that rolls like Bent Grass. They reward a good shot or putt, from any distance.

Today's opening round hole locations were very fair, as evidenced by the fine round of 8-under 64 put up by Michael Wharton-Palmer (Texarkana, AR) and Brian McGahey (Hamburg, NY) in the "Saber Division" (for players 50 and over).

Walter Todd, Jr. (Greenville, SC) and Jordan Sease (Lexington, SC) lead the Cannon Division (for mid-amateurs) with a 7-under 65. Walter is an AmateurGolf.com member and after joining, he found out about the tournament through the website, submitted an application, got in, and now tops the leaderboard. Past performance is not indicative of future results, but that's the power of AGC!

The leaderboard is crowded though--four teams are just one shot behind and seven teams two back, so it is still anyone's tournament.

TOURNAMENT NOTES

- On the No. 1 handicap third hole, two teams cancelled out skins by holing out shots from the fairway. Larry Cotten of Ocala, Florida watched his 7-iron land 15-feet short, and trickle in like a putt, then learned after the round that his skin was "topped" by Secession G.C. member Kevin Allis, who holed a wedge. Tough going guys!

ABOUT THE The Devlin

The Devlin is a 54-hole best ball tournament that has had a loyal following for over 25 years. 40 two-man teams -- best ball scoring on Friday and Saturday, combined score on Sunday. The tournament was moved from Texas to Secession Golf Club in South Carolina in 2011. The Cannon (Championship) Division is for mid-amateurs age 25+ with combined handicap of 7.0 or less, and the Saber (Senior) Division is for players in the 50+ age group with combined handicap of 9.0 or less.

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