MONTGOMERY, Ala. (May 19, 2013) -- It was closer than he wanted, but Emile Vaughan, who lives in Pike Road near Montgomery, won not only the 57-64 age group in the 16th State Senior Amateur Championship Wynlakes Golf & Country Club, but the overall championship as well.
He shot rounds of 69-70-75–214 to finish on two-under-par and one clear of Birmingham’s John Lyon, who started slowly with an opening 77, but roared home over the weekend with rounds of 67-70, for a total of 215.
Vaughan, who won the inaugural State Mid-Amateur in 1989 and the 2007 State Senior, was eligible to win the overall title as both age groups play from the same tees in this Alabama Golf Association state championship.
“I barely got it done,” Vaughan said. “I thought I had a three-shot lead after 14 holes, but didn’t know any more than that.”
As it turned out he came to the tough closing hole, with water in play off the tee and by the green for approach shots, with just a one-shot lead.
“I really didn’t want to know (where he stood) before my tee shot, but wanted to know after I had found the fairway. But no one seemed to know.”
He played his second shot, from 140 yards, safely away from the water, leaving a long putt from off the green, which rolled four feet past the hole. He made the putt and only then found out he had won by the slimmest of margins.
“Sometimes the less you know, the better. I do know this, you always need to try your hardest on every shot. I let a few shots slide in the middle of the round, but knew I had to play the rest of the way around par.”
He was able to do so, closing with six pars.
A Montgomery native his entire life, Vaughan, 57, played junior college golf for Alexander City (now Central Alabama Community College) and then transfered to Middle Tennessee State. He tried the mini-tours and club professional life, but it wasn’t for him so he regained his amateur status in 1982 and owns a commercial printing business in town. He is a member of Wynlakes and has played many, many rounds there over the years.
As well as finishing second overall, Lyon won the 50-56 age group by three from Robert Nelson of Fairhope (72-75-71), Montgomery’s Stan Sherlin (73-70-75), and Mark Corley of Owens Cross Roads (72-71-75), all on 218.
Sterrett’s David Head shot 73-73-74–220 to finish second in the 57-64 age group, with Mobile’s Wayne Gardner winning the 65+ age group after rounds of 71-69-77–217 by three of over John Gibbs of Oneonta (76-72-72–220).
View results for Alabama State Senior Amateur Golf Championship