Tug Maude (GAP photo)
’s re-entry into competitive golf has been smooth, where performance is concerned. Logistically, there was the Thursday morning hiccup of finding his Stocker Cup partner (the format in this elite mid-amateur event pairs an A player, Maude, with a B-level player), but after Maude connected with Richard Tuohey
late morning, he was free to light up the difficult Preserve layout with seven birdies and set up a one-shot lead.
Maude, of Atlanta, had two bogeys out of the gate but quickly erased them with birdies at Nos. 3 and 4. He played his final seven holes in 5 under for his opening 67. This is Maude’s Stocker Cup debut, and it comes five months after winning the Walter J. Travis Invitational at Garden City (New York) Golf Club.
Something says he’s just getting warmed up.
Maude was not only playing in his first Travis, but his first individual golf tournament in six years. The 36-year-old gave the mini-tours a try but regained his amateur status but, like many in his stage of life, found little time for competitive golf.
That’s a common storyline at the Stocker Cup. Maude leads Bobby Leopold
, a four-time Rhode Island Mid-Amateur champion, by a single shot after the first round on a Preserve course where the greens played just as firm and fast as usual.
, the 2019 Texas Mid-Am Match Play winner, had a 69 that included a back-nine 32 and is solo third, one shot ahead of Scott Anderson
of Columbus, Ohio.
A six-man tie for fifth at 1 under includes U.S. Mid-Amateur runner-up Joseph Deraney
of Belden, Miss., and defending Stocker Cup champion John Sawin
of Pebble Beach, Calif.
Leopold and partner Tony Thornley, both from England, lead the gross team division after combining for an 8-under 64. Thornley is a member at Preserve Golf Club.
As for Maude, it’s a good thing he and Tuohey connected, considering that at 5-under 67, they’re tied for fifth with Harwell and Kirk Pearson
In the net team competition, Harwell and Pearson managed a 9-under 63 that left them tied for first with Leopold and Thornley.
Wlodkowski and Cooke are tied for third at 8 under, and Patrick Christovich and Vince Sakowski are also on that number.
ABOUT THE Stocker Cup
The Stocker Cup was founded in 1991 to honor
memory of Peter Stocker. Peter and his
Harlan and John Montgomery founded San
Pacific Union Company, a highly successful real
development company. The firm initiated the
development of The Santa Lucia Preserve, a
acre residential and golf community located
Carmel. Meandering through the winding road
Preserve's centerpiece -- the top-100 rated golf
course -- has been described as "driving
through a California postcard." The Stocker Cup
was played from 1991 to 1999 at Pebble Beach
surrounding golf courses, before moving to the
Fazio and Sandy Tatum designed Preserve G.C.
words of former USGA President Tatum: "Peter
Stocker was the quintessential amateur golfer.
loved golf with a passion. He would have loved
simultaneous best-ball event, similar to the
AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am. Invited Mid-
players are either paired with a single digit
can propose their own partner to be introduced
invited by the Committee.
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