Golfweek Senior TOC: Patrick Stayer comes from behind to win the Senior Divison
The Forest Golf and Country Club
The Forest Golf and Country Club

By Brayden Conover 

Three days of battling wind gusts north of 30 miles per hour and wet conditions at The Forest Golf & Country Club in Ft. Meyers, Florida, took its toll on much of the 96-man field, but four golfers were able to survive the rest to lay claim on the final Golfweek senior amateur tournament of the year.

Seniors Division 

Going into Thursday’s final round, Vance Welch held a two-stroke advantage over the field, sitting at 1 over for the championship.

Through 15 holes, Welch needed to play the final three holes even par or better to close out the championship. A double bogey on No. 16 and a closing bogey on No. 18 saw Welch slip from the top of the leaderboard.

With the costly stumble, Ft. Meyers native Patrick Stayer slid past Welch thanks to a bogey-free final-round 71. Stayer’s final round was the only bogey-free round of the week and was also the lowest round of the tournament in the senior age division.

Kevin VandenBerg was able to draw himself closer to the No. 1 spot in the Player of the Year rankings with a T10 finish. Next week’s Society of Seniors Ralph Bogart Tournament will determine the Golfweek Senior Player of the Year, as both Vandenberg and No. 2 Jon Lindstrom will be in the field. With No. 1 ranked Bob Royak not playing, Lindstrom and Vandenberg will have an opportunity to take the top spot right at the buzzer.

Super Seniors Division

Steve Humphrey went into Thursday’s final round five shots back of 36-hole leader Greg Goode. Needing at least a runner-up finish to move ahead of No. 1 ranked Marcus Beck, Humphrey knew he had to play some of his best golf.

Carding an even par 72 to finish the event at 8 over par, Humphrey anxiously waited for the rest of the field to come in. Coming off of a birdie on No. 17, Goode bogeyed the 54th hole of the tournament, making way for a three-man playoff between himself, Humphrey, and Mike Arter.

Knowing what was at stake, Humphrey took full advantage of the situation, winning the tournament on the second playoff hole. He not only goes home with the Tournament of Champions trophy but now sits atop the 2023 Player of the Year Super Senior rankings.

The playoff win also counts as a title defense for Humphrey, who won the TOC super senior division in 2022 at PGA National.

Legends Division

North Carolina’s Pete Allen goes wire-to-wire at The Forest, being one of two Legends to break 80 all three days en route to the championship win.

Nursing a four-stroke lead heading into the day, Allen coasted with a final round 79 to maintain his lead, closing the event out with a 13 over, 229 total. Vince Scarpetta and Bob Casamento tied for second place at 17 over.

Super Legends Division

After shooting his age or better the first two days, Gary Hardin (11 over) was able to battle the tough conditions just enough to take a wire-to-wire victory in his age bracket.

With scoring hard to come by, Hardin’s birdie-free 80 was enough to stave off Jack Marin, who finishes in second place at 14 over. John Blank (15 over), Gil Stenholm (16 over) and Henry Cole (16 over) round out the top five.

Results: Golfweek Senior TOC
1TXPat StayerDallas, TX70073-75-71=219
2MDVance WelchPrince Frederick, MD40073-72-76=221
T3FLMiles McConnellTampa, FL30075-76-72=223
T3MSCraig HurlbertMadison, MS30077-74-72=223
T3WIJim DoingVerona, WI30073-74-76=223

View full results for Golfweek Senior TOC

ABOUT THE Golfweek Senior TOC

54 hole, Medal Play with Senior (55-64), Super Senior (65-69), and Legends (70+) Divisions. The Golfweek Senior Tournament of Champions is open to all winners of senior events in the last calendar year.

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