ACWORTH, Ga. (Sept. 9, 2012) -- John Hopper of Eatonton posted a 1-under-par 70 in the final round to clinch the 24th annual Georgia Public Links Championship, which took place at Cobblestone Golf Course, September 8-9. Hopper’s 2-under-par 140 (70-70) total was one stroke better than Scott Melton of Ringgold (71-70) and Billy Mitchell of Roswell (69-72), who share runner-up honors at 1-under-par 141. Mitchell entered this week as the two-time defending Public Links champion.
In round one of the 36-hole Public Links Championship, Hopper recorded a pair of birdies and a bogey en route to a 1-under-par 70 on day one, which put him in a tie for second one stroke back of 18-hole leader Mitchell. Over the final 18 holes at Cobblestone Golf Course, Hopper notched birdies on holes seven, 14 and 15, with bogeys on five and eight.
Playing in the next-to-last group of the day, Hopper finished at 140 and had to wait and see what would happen with still a group on the golf course. Walking to the 18th green even for the day, the back-to-back champion from 2010 and 2011 missed his putt for par and bogeyed the par-4, 441-yard hole to finish at 1-over for the day, 1-under for the tournament, and one stroke back from Hopper for a share of second-place.
Rounding out the top-10 includes Bill Leonard of Dallas in fourth at 1-over-par 143 (72-71). Tying for fifth were Terry Rush of Buford (74-70) and 2006 Public Links champion Mark Sweeney of Monroe (70-74) at 2-over-par 144. Three players tied for seventh at 3-over-par 145, including Zach Lassetter of Carrollton (74-71), Eric Freese of Athens (73-72) and Ryan Morley-Stockton of Woodstock (69-76). Jim Kamis of Marietta (74-73) and Harry Cain III of Atlanta (72-75) tied for 10th.
Philip Williams of Madison won the first flight at 12-over-par 154 (78-76); Ladell Norton of Rome also posted 12-over-par 154 (75-79) to win the second flight; Jerry Chastain of Dawsonville claimed third-flight honors at 30-over-par 172 (84-88); and Michael Dean of Marietta won the fourth flight at 22-over-par 164 (80-84).
View results for Georgia Public Links Golf Championship