Mike Booker wins Texas South Senior in playoff
KATY, Texas (April 4, 2012) -– Another day of overcast skies giving way to a sunny afternoon welcomed the field to the final round of the 2012 South Senior Amateur Championship hosted by The Club at Falcon Point in Katy. The field was treated to two dramatic playoffs that saw Mike Booker win the Senior Division while Peter Kirchner claimed victory in the Super Senior Division. Booker began his final round two strokes behind while Kirchner was four strokes off of the lead.

Booker, of The Woodlands, started his final round within striking distance of first round leader Owen Joyner. Booker opened his front nine with two birdies and two bogeys to turn at even par 36. The former University of Houston golfer was able to card back-to-back birdies on the par five 12th and par three 13th holes, respectively, before a final bogey on the par three 17th hole.

With a 1-under par 71 in his first round, Booker was able to turn in a second 1-under par 71 (36-35) final round to take claim as the clubhouse leader at 2-under par 142 while he waited for the final group to finish.

Owen Joyner, also of The Woodlands, began his final round with a string of pars before collecting his first bogey on the par four 8th hole to turn at 1-over par 37. A birdie on the par five 12th hole was soon countered with a bogey on the par five 16th hole. Joyner finished up with two pars to turn in a final round 1-over par 73 (37-36) and finished with a two day total of 2-under par 142 (69-73) to tie Booker.

With Booker and Joyner tied atop the leaderboard, the two found themselves in a playoff that took place on the par four 18th hole. Booker was able to seal victory in the Senior Division with a two putt par as Joyner found trouble with the pampas grass and recorded a double bogey 6.

Kerrville’s Dennis Emerson finished alone in third place at even par 144 after rounds of 1-under par 71 and 1-over par 73 for the championship. Katy’s David Pocknall and Mike Allen, of Austin, finished in a tie for fourth place at 1-over par 145. Emerson (2009), Pocknall (2010) and Allen (2011) have each won the Senior Division of the South Senior Amateur Championship since it began in 2009.

The Super Senior Division saw the same type of excitement as Spring’s Peter Kirchner began the day four strokes back of first round leader Bob Smith, of Houston. Kirchner, who opened with a 4-over par 76 in the first round, saw four birdies, four bogeys and a double bogey en route to a 2-over par 74 final round. Kirchner finished the Championship at 6-over par 150.

Smith, who posted a first round score of even par 72, couldn’t seem to stay away from the bogeys in the final round. A lone birdie on the par three 2nd hole was paired with seven bogeys as Smith finished the final round at 6-over par 78 (38-40) and a two-day total of 150 to tie Kirchner.

Smith and Kirchner each recorded a par on the par five 9th hole in the playoff. Playing the 9th hole a second time saw Kirchner sink a left-to-right breaking 15 foot birdie putt to win the Super Senior Division as Smith’s birdie attempt missed on the right side.

Larry Walsh, of Mountain City, and Houston’s James Rath finished in a tie for third place at 9-over par 153.

The top five (and ties) in the Senior Division and the top three (and ties) in the Super Senior Division will earn exemptions into the 2012 State Senior Amateur Championship to be held at Miramont Country Club in Bryan from August 17-19, 2012.

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