In the 90’s, the tournament roster filled with 240 players and 100 player waiting list. With the growing popularity of select-shot team play, interest in individual competition has waned in recent years.
“We are thrilled to find a new home for our tournament-so rich in history-the weekend after the Masters in Augusta,” said Elks Course Pro Dan Le Blanc. “We had 25 more players than last year and lots of strong scores. It’s exciting to showcase the talent that we have in this area.”
The tournament welcomed back the 2011 champion David Watts, as well as the 2007 winner Robby Cole.
“I was amazed and humbled by the reception and encouragement I got,” said Cole. “The course is in great shape, and I’m glad the FH Memorial is not just another tournament in history.”
Players were flighted after Saturday’s round with Lanne Lawson leading the Championship A Flight with a 66.
William Hamilton, Austin Henderson and David Watts followed with 67 each.
On Sunday, play got tougher as unpredictable winds left golfers with difficult shots.
At the end of the day, Hamilton and Lawson carried the top two positions with Lawson missing a putt on 18 to tie.
Hamilton, the winner, began playing golf at the age of 12. He began playing competitively on the Calhoun High School golf team and then for Columbus State University. Hamilton is a strong advocate of restoring the competition.
“I’m proud we’re able to have the Frank Hunt Tournament,” said Hamilton. “I’d like to encourage all who have a love of the sport to come out and play. Let’s make this a long lasting tradition in local golf.”
This year’s tournament included a new senior division and looks forward to adding a ladies division next year.
Championship A: First place William Hamilton, second place Lanne Lawson and third place Bradley Crowe
Championship B: First place Roger Gresham, second place Mark Reece and third place Jarret Ables
First Flight: First place Randy Sutherland, second place Matt Crowder and third place Chase Rutledge
Senior Division: First place Terry Wright, second place Melvin Nicholson and third place Ron “Cowboy” Lowery.