RICHMOND, VA (June 1, 2017) - There are “young guys” to be found, even in the super senior ranks.
VSGA super senior championships are for players ages 65 and over, so fields tend to have a wide range of ages represented. The 32nd Virginia Super Senior Stroke Play Championship, contested Wednesday and Thursday at Stonehenge Golf & Country Club, featured players from ages 65-81. And like in other championships, the younger players seem to have an advantage in length.
But there’s something to be said for savvy and experience, and 74-year-old Peter Jacobi (Army Navy CC) showed both over the championship’s two days. He posted an even-par, two-day 142 to finish two strokes clear of John Cuomo and Mike Thompson and win his second Super Senior Stroke Play title.
Jacobi became the third player to win two Super Senior Stroke play titles, joining fellow Army Navy member Bill Engel (2012-13) and Bill Chase, who won in 2003 and 2005. Jacobi’s first title came when he was 68. This one was a little more unexpected, if not equally satisfying.
“I’ve looked at my future in golf, and it’s all behind me,” Jacobi joked after Thursday’s second round. “I played well years and decades ago. Now I’m playing against 65 and 66 year olds. Now, it’s like I’m hanging on.”
Jacobi, an Arlington resident, was one of three players to return an under-par score on Thursday. Thompson, a Richmond resident and Stonehenge member, was one of the others. (Bill Bascom Jr. of Spring Creek GC shaved 10 strokes off his first-round 80 and shot a 1-under 70 Thursday). Thompson posted the only sub-70 round of the tournament, a 2-under 69 on Thursday that put him in contention, especially with first-round co-leaders Cuomo—the 2015 champion—and Engel struggling.
“Obviously, knowing the course helps,” said the 65-year-old Thompson, who was playing in his first Super Senior Stroke Play Championship. “But you’ve still got to hit shots.”Thompson’s second round was solid, featuring three birdies and a bogey. But he never could quite recover from a tough inward nine in Wednesday’s first round.
“I hit the ball in the water on No. 11,” Thompson said. “Then on 12, I plugged it in the bunker and had to hit it 50 yards back just to have a shot. So I considered that a penalty.”Cuomo—who has a Handicap Index through Laurel Hill GC but lives in Richmond and plays most of his golf at Stonehenge—never got going Thursday, shooting a 3-over 74 that opened the door for Jacobi to make a move. Cuomo made two birdies but had five bogeys on the scorecard Thursday.
Engel had a much tougher go of it. He was 3 over at the turn and still in contention, but a bogey-double bogey start to the back sunk his chances. Engel parred out, but a 6-over 77 dropped him into fifth place, five shots behind Jacobi.
Jacobi played his best golf of the tournament over his final nine holes, going 3 under on the back Thursday, including a three on No. 17, one of only five birdies on the penultimate hole in the final round.
“I hit a 3 wood off the tee and a little 8 iron eight feet under the cup, and I made it,” Jacobi said. “Just a well-played hole.
“I didn’t hit the ball very well, but I scraped it acceptably in play, and I didn’t make any horrible errors. But it wasn’t pure ball striking. Yesterday, I didn’t putt well. Today, I was better. Had two three-putts yesterday, but none today.”
Van McCarter (Blue Hills GC) finished fourth at 146 after following his opening-round 72 with a 74.
Steve Isaacs (Independence GC) and Mike Ancel (Newport News GC at Deer Run) tied for sixth at 148. Chips Wooddy (Roanoke CC), Jim Higginbotham (Spring Creek GC) and Bill Nunnenkamp (Blue Hills GC) tied for eighth at 149, rounding out the top 10.
View results for VSGA Super Senior Stroke Play
ABOUT THE VSGA Super Senior Stroke Play
36-hole stroke play competition (18 holes per day).
Open to VSGA members 65 years of age or older
holding an active GHIN number issued by a licensed
VSGA Member Club in good standing.
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