Andy Roberts (Kentucky Golf Association photo)
HEBRON, Ky. (Oct. 2, 2018) – Andy Roberts
of Owensboro shot rounds of 70-71 at Traditions Golf Club for a 3-under 141 that led him to the Clark’s Pump-N-Shop Kentucky Mid-Amateur title. Tony Wise, Christopher Hill and Scott Hansel all picked up victories in their respective divisions, too.
While the final results might show a three-stroke win for Roberts, the victory was hardly an easy one as the challenging Traditions layout proved to be a stern test for the field. The day began with seven players within four strokes of the lead, but midway through the back nine, it became a two-horse race between Roberts and Matt Epperson of Lexington.
Roberts held the overnight co-lead with a first-round 70, and after beginning his final round 2 under through eight holes, he looked to be in control of the tournament. However, a pair of bogeys on Nos. 9 and 11 coupled with a charging Epperson made things more than a little interesting.
“The course was playing hard enough to where no one was really running away with it,” said Roberts. “Even though I made bogey on No. 11, I knew I was right in it.”
For Roberts, the shot of the day was his second tee shot on the 14th hole. With a one-stroke advantage over Epperson, Roberts hit his first drive into the thick brush, forcing him to hit the exact same shot from the teeing ground. No doubt shaken but refusing to be deterred, Roberts hit his provisional ball down the middle of the fairway and got up-and-down to save his bogey.
“I made a bad swing on No. 14 but made a really good bogey, especially considering I was hitting three off the tee,” said Roberts. “After that, I had really good looks for birdie the rest of the way in and it was just a matter of getting it to the clubhouse.”
After his miraculous bogey on the 14th hole, both Roberts and Epperson were tied atop the leaderboard. Unfortunately for Epperson, a pair of bogeys on his final two holes left Roberts a clear path to victory. He navigated the difficult finishing stretch with ease, capping off the win with a closing birdie to seal his third Mid-Amateur title.
“There were so many good players here this week and to come through with a victory is big,” said Roberts. “It’s been a long summer and my putting hasn’t been what I would have liked it to be, but this is a great way to finish off the season.”
Despite coming up just short, it was a strong showing for Epperson, who has previously won the 2016 Lexington Men’s City Golf Championship but is still seeking his first KGA championship victory. His final-round 71 tied for low round of the day and his best-ever finish in the Mid-Amateur Championship.
Although a final round 76 dropped overnight co-leader Joseph Deraney of Lexington into third place, it was good enough for him to clinch the John Owens KGA Player of the Year Award. The two-time defending Mid-Amateur Champion has had quite a remarkable season which included a victory at the Canadian Mid-Amateur last month. That win also came with an exemption into the 2019 PGA Tour RBC Canadian Open, where he will make his first-ever PGA Tour start.
Aside from the Mid-Amateur Championship division, there were three other divisions that crowned champions – the Mid-Senior Division (ages 40-49), the Senior Division (ages 50-59) and Masters Division (ages 60+). In the Mid-Senior Division, Tony Wise of Georgetown shot rounds of 71-74—145 to win by two strokes over Pete Cornett of Loyall. In the Senior Division, both Christopher Hill of Danville and Steve Humphries of Georgetown finished tied at +7, with Hill winning the scorecard playoff per his low second round of 77. In the Masters Division, Scott Hansel of Independence shot 75-73—148 for a one stroke victory over Dennis Long and Ricky Bourne.
View results for Kentucky Mid-Amateur
ABOUT THE Kentucky Mid-Amateur
36-hole stroke play championship with the following
divisions: Open (ages 25+), Mid-Senior (40-49),
Senior (50-59), and Masters (60+). Open division is
gross scoring only, while the other divisions are
gross and net.
Entrants in all KGA tournaments shall be required to
have an active Handicap Index at a Kentucky Golf
Association Member Club at the time of entry and
meet the championship’s residency requirements.
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