Doug Hanzel (USGA photo)
After winning two major senior titles, capturing the biggest super senior title, and finishing as runner-up in the U.S. Senior Amateur, Doug Hanzel
of Savannah, Ga. is the 2022 AmateurGolf.com Super Senior Player of the Year.
The AmateurGolf.com Super Senior Player of the Year is awarded based on a point system earned through performance in major senior and super senior events throughout the course of the year. This year, Hanzel topped the points standings in his first year as a super senior.
10 years into senior golf, Hanzel is still winning major senior titles, and though he turned 65 in February, he spent most of the year playing against the 55+ set. Any why wouldn't he? He is still one of the best seniors in amateur golf and a threat to win every time he tees it up.
Hanzel had a solid start to the year, logging top-10 finishes in the Gasparilla Senior (where he finished T47 against the mid-ams), Jones Cup Senior, and Coleman Senior, and contending in the Florida Azalea Senior and Chanticleer National Senior with second- and third-place finishes, respectively.
Players of the Year
But his year really took off when the calendar turned to summer; at the National Senior Hall of Fame Championship, where he was inducted in 2019, Hanzel won by four shots over the newest inductee (and 2021 AGC Senior POY) Gene Elliott
, and Allen Peake
Related: The 2021 AGC Senior Player of the Year: Gene Elliott
Hanzel took time away from the points race to win a record seventh title
in the National Father-Son Championship with his son Drew.
After finishing as the 5th-low senior in the International Senior Team and Individual Championship, Hanzel headed to the U.S. Senior Amateur at the Kittansett Club in Massachusetts, trying to tie the record for the longest gap between victories (nine years).
Hanzel shows his mental toughness at Kittansett, winning five matches, four of them 1 up. In his first match against Rupert Kellock
of England, Hanzel was 2 down with 4 to go but came back to win 1 up. In his quarterfinal match against fellow former-champ Sean Knapp
, Hanzel won the last two holes to win 1 up.
In an all-Georgia final against #1-ranked senior Rusty Strawn
, Hanzel's run finally came to an end as Strawn won the final match 3&2
The following week, Hanzel entered his lone super senior championship of the year (also the biggest championship of the year) and walked away with the Society of Seniors (SOS) National Super Senior Championship by six shots
Back home in Georgia, he picked up another win
at the Georgia Senior Amateur, his fourth in the event. His three-week stretch helped him earn AmateurGolf.com Player-of-the-Month
honors for September.
Final Super Senior POY Points Standings, 2022
|1 ||Doug Hanzel||Savannah, GA||5850|
|2 ||Jack Hall||Savannah, GA||3850|
|3 ||Steve Humphrey||Ocala, FL||3000|
|4 ||Jeff Burda||Modesto, CA||2725|
|4 ||Marc Fried||Solon, OH||2725|
|6 ||Tim Vigotsky||Centreville, VA||2100|
|7 ||John Armstrong||Frostburg, MD||2025|
|8 ||Joe Shaktman||Coral Springs, FL||1675|
|8 ||James Starnes||Fort Myers, FL||1675|
|10 ||Larry Nunez||Austin, TX||1600|
Hanzel would earn his second Player-of-the-Month recognition
in November, alongside his longtime four-ball partner Bob Royak
. The two former U.S. Senior Amateur champions each went 4-1-2 to lead their teams to victory in the East-West Cup Matches and the Concession Cup in Spain. In between those two events, the duo won the Georgia State Four-Ball
championship for the fourth consecutive year.
He would close out his year with a bang, firing a final-round 68 to come from two shots back to win the SOS Ralph Bogart Senior
by a single shot over Gary Robinson
and Ken Kinkopf
Last year's Super Senior Player-of-the-Year, Jeff Burda
, finished fourth in this year's standings on the strength of three major super senior titles.
Complete 2022 Points List (239 players) | AmateurGolf.com Super Senior Rankings (two-year aggregate)