THE WOODLANDS, TX (May 2, 2017) - With
the calendar now turned to May the eyes of the amateur golfing
world are focused on the annual gathering at The
Club at Carlton Woods. A number of the top mid-
amateur and senior players in the country are
again scheduled to make their way down to the
Houston area to take part in the Carlton Woods
Invitational from May 2-4.
Included in this years deep field are the
event's defending champions; mid-amateur
winner Colby Harwell and senior champion Lewis
"Both of the defending champions played so
well last year, and Colby [Harwell] won it for the
second time and [Lewis] Stephenson he was a
new 55-year-old last year and he has done well
in every event that he has played in so it was
exciting to have some young blood in the Senior
Division," tournament director Marty Benson
After the Fazio Course served as the host
track last year, the Nicklaus Course will be host
course in 2017.
The Nicklaus Course is believed to be the
more difficult of the two courses playing 3-4
strokes more difficult for the membership. From
the tips the par-72 layout can be stretched to
7,402 yards and it features deep-faced fairway
and greenside bunkering, a variety of flanking
and frontal water hazards, sandy waste areas
and boldly contoured greens. In total half of the
holes on the course feature some sort of water
"The greens will be really fast and the
course is in terrific condition and the staff will
probably run the greens around 13 on the
stimpmeter," Benson said. "There are a lot of
areas were if you miss the green there are a lot
of tightly mown chipping areas and most of them
are into the grain so it is really tricky. Even-par
will be a good number for the tournament."
The signature hole of the Nicklaus Course is
the 455 yard par-4 15th. There is water along
the left side and front of the green and players
will breath a sigh of relief if they can mark down
If the 15th is the signature hole, then the
18th might be the most exciting hole. The
closing hole on the Nicklaus Course is a 548 yard
par-5 that offers players the chance to reach the
green in two. However, they will have to be
careful because water guards the front right
portion of the green. Many a tournament has
been won with an 18th hole birdie.
Mid-Amateur Players to Watch:
- The 2011
champion, Bartman has impressive resume
finishing tied for seventh in the Trans-Mississippi
Amateur in 2010 and reaching match play at the
2008 U.S. Amateur.
- After not playing
in the Carlton Woods Invitational for a few years
Crockett is making his return in 2017. In 2007
Crockett finished as the event's runner-up.
- Making his first
appearance at the Carlton Woods Invitational,
Deraney is looking to find his form from a year
ago. During the 2016 season, Deraney became a
force on the mid-amateur circuit winning three
AmateurGolf.com Rankings events: the
Stocker Cup, Lupton Invitational and Timuquana
Cup. In addition he picked up a victory at the
- Four-times Brady
Exber has finished inside the top-10, but never
has he has he won the Carlton Woods
Invitational. Last year, for the second time in his
career Exber finished the event tied for second.
Exber, a force regionally and nationally, had six
top-10 AmateurGolf.com Ranking event finishes
in 2016 and in 2015 he won the Stocker Cup and
- The defending
champion also won the Carlton Woods
Invitational in 2013 and this year he will try to
become the first repeat champion since Kevin
Marsh accomplished the feat in 2009 and 2010.
Harwell will also try to join Marsh as the only
three-time winners of the event.
- A member of
The Club at Carlton Woods, Hurlbert was the club
champion last year. Hurlbert tied for 12th in the
Carlton Woods Invitational in 2016 and he was
the 2010 Montana State Mid-Amateur winner.
Senior Players to Watch:
- One of the top
players in tournament history, Booker has won
the Carlton Woods Invitational twice (2011,
2012) and the Carlton Woods Senior Invitational
once (2014). Playing at his home club, Booker
finished tied for second in the event last year.
- The caddy of
Fred Funk, Dunsmore has played in the U.S. Senior
Amateur each of the last two years making it to the
quarterfinals in 2016.
- Last year Lyons put
together a solid year with his best showing
coming at the Trans-Mississippi Senior where he
placed fifth. He also finished 13th at the
George C. Thomas Senior and reached the Round
of 32 at the U.S. Senior Amateur. Two years ago
Lyons was fourth at the Carlton Woods Senior
while previously picking up three top-three
finishes in the Carlton Woods Invitational.
- Former resident of The
Woodlands now living in Scottsdale, New is
in search of his first win in the event. In
2016 New was sixth and the year before that the
runner-up. During the 2015 campaign New
captured the Trans-Mississippi Senior title.
- A three-time All-
American at Stanford, Peck is looking to break
into the winners circle at The Club at Carlton
Woods. In the last three years he has a pair of
top-three showings; 2016 (T2) and 2014 (3rd).
- The last time the
tournament was held on the Nicklaus Course in
2015 Sandlin won the title so he is in essence
the host course's defending champion.
reigning champion also won the Texas Senior
Amateur last year and finished sixth at the Crane
ABOUT THE Carlton Woods Invitational
A 54-hole stroke play golf
played at The Club at Carlton Woods in the
Houston community of The Woodlands,
golf is one of the top activities. Entry into the
Woods Invitational is strictly
by invitation from the Tournament Committee. The
90-player field will be
comprised of two tournament divisions, a Mid-Am
Division for players aged 25-54,
and a Senior Division for players aged 55 and above.
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