Rick Stimmel (Porter Cup Photo)
of Pittsburgh, Pa., started and finished the 2023 Senior Porter Cup at Niagara Falls Country Club in Lewiston, N.Y., on top of the leaderboard.
The first-round leader, Stimmel, shot a total of 3-over throughout the 54-hole tournament. He shot rounds of 68-75-70 to win the championship.
"In the first round, I probably played better than it looked," Stimmel said. "The second day, I putted so bad."
Stimmel added, "Today, I just picked up the pieces, and it was better than (the second round). I just knew if I was patient enough, (the scoring) would come."
Stimmel shot an even-par 70 final round to move past Tony Hejna on the leaderboard. It was a tough final round for the 36-hole leader Hejna, as he shot 8-over 78.
It was anything but easy for Stimmel to secure the win, as he bogeyed the par-3 No. 18 to send the championship to a playoff against 2021 champion Steve Maddalena
of Jackson Miss.
In the playoff, the two golfers played No. 18 again. Stimmel found himself in the front greenside bunker off the tee while Maddalena found the green. However, Stimmel got up and down, and Maddalena three-putted, giving Stimmel the win.
Ed Wyatt of Lincoln, Neb., finished in solo third place at 5-over.
It has been an impressive summer for Stimmel, as he has now won eight times.
"Once you make one or two extra putts in a round, the confidence just skyrockets," Stimmel said. "You don't feel like you have to chip every shot close.
"Some of us hit it a little further or higher, but at the end of the day, Golf comes down to trying to figure out a way to get the ball in the hole, and when you start rolling in those 8-to-10 footers, it makes it a lot easier," Stimmel added.
Stimmel has had a unique journey in the world of golf, as AmateurGolf.com chronicled back in 2021.
Related: CLOSE TO HOME: RICK STIMMEL
In the Super Senior Division, James Starnes of Fort Meyers, Fla., won by one shot with a score of 6-over. Starnes went wire-to-wire to win the Division.
Robert DeWitt of East Amherst, N.Y., won the Legends Division by two shots with a score of 10-over, and Randy Reifers of Milford, OH., won the Super Legends Division by three shots with a score of 6-over.
ROUND TWO RECAP
After 36 holes at Niagara Falls Country Club in Lewiston, N.Y., Tony Hejna of Juno Beach, Fla., leads the Senior Porter Cup.
Hejna shot a second-round 2-over 72 after a first-round 1-under 69 to hold a two-shot lead at 1-over total.
The second round played much harder than the first round, with no golfers shooting an under-par round. Three golfers were under par in round one.
First-round leader Rick Stimmel of Pittsburgh, Pa., and Steve Maddalena of Jackson, Miss., are tied for second place at 3-over.
Ed Wyatt of Lincoln, Neb., Tom Laubacher of Aurora, OH., and Kevin VandenBerg of Pulaski, N.Y., are all tied for fourth place at 4-over.
James Starnes of Fort Meyers, Fla., leads the Super Senior Division by two shots at 2-over. Michael McNulty is in solo second place at 4-over.
There is a three-way tie at the top in the Legends Division. Peter Van Ingen of Palm Beach, Fla., James Smith of Orchard Park, N.Y., and Robert DeWitt of East Amherst, N.Y. are all tied at 7-over and lead the rest of the field by six shots.
Randy Reifers of Milford, OH., leads the Super Legends Division at 4-over by two shots.
ROUND ONE RECAP
of Pittsburgh, Pa., is leading the Senior Porter Cup after round one at Niagara Falls Country Club in Lewiston, N.Y.
Stimmel leads by one shot over Tony Hejna of Juno Beach, Fla., and Darren Shaw of Stoney Creek, Ont., after shooting a 2-under 68 over.
Hejna and Shaw both shot rounds of 1-under 69.
Stimmel made five birdies and three bogeys in his opening round. Stimmel got his score all the way up to 4-under after birding Holes Nos. 11, 12, and 13, but bogeys on Holes No. 14 and 18 brought him to 2-under 68.
Stimmel has had an impressive summer, finishing T8 at the Pennsylvania Amateur and making the match play portion at the U.S. Senior Amateur. He was also the medalist at his U.S. Senior Amateur Qualifying site.
Tom Laubacher of Aurora, OH., Dan Allan of Gunter, Tex., Mark Czerniakowski of Montgomeryville, Pa., and Steve Maddalena of Jackson, Miss., are all tied for fourth place after rounds of 1-over 71.