COLLEGE GROVE – The Tennessee Golf Association began its 2019 state championship schedule on Wednesday as the Tennessee Senior and Super Senior Four-Ball Championships got underway at The Grove.
Despite a nearly three-hour delay due to heavy rains in the morning, all but one group got their first 18 holes completed before darkness settled in. That one group will finish early Thursday before the second round gets underway.
The two age groups are being conducted as separate championships. This is the 26thannual renewal of the Senior Four-Ball, which is open to players 55 and older. The Super Senior Four-Ball features players 65 and older and is in its seventh year.
There were some familiar faces at the top of the Senior Four-Ball leaderboard, highlighted by 20-time TGA champion Tim Jackson (Williston) and playing partner Buzz Fly (Memphis), who is a former Tennessee Senior Amateur Golfer of the Year in his own right. The duo won the Tennessee Senior Four-Ball title in 2016 at Rarity Bay.
Wednesday at the Grove, Jackson and Fly fired a round of 7-under, 65 to hold a three-stroke lead over Mike Poe (Kingsport) and Bob Rice (Pikeville). Poe and Rice made the turn at even par before four back-nine birdies powered them to a 4-under, 68.
Brothers James McCord and John McCord of Tullahoma are currently in third place at 3-under. Two teams are tied for fourth at 2-under: Phil Powers (Germantown) and Michael Albonetti (Cordova), and William Hardin (Bristol) and Cary Daniels (Kingsport). Mark Enderle (Franklin) and Tom Provow (College Grove) are alone in sixth after a 1-under, 71.
Nine teams are currently tied for seventh at even par, including four-time tournament champions Danny Green (Jackson) at Steve Golliher (Knoxville).
The top eight teams after Thursday’s second round of stroke play advance to an eight-team match play bracket. The quarterfinals and semifinals are scheduled for Friday, with the championship match played Saturday morning.
The Super Senior Four-Ball leaderboard wasn’t finalized due to one team not finishing Wednesday, but Mike Nixon (Nashville) and Larry Dupree (Germantown) showed the way in the posted scores with a 4-under, 68. Nixon won the title in 2014 with Mike Patton at WindRiver.
Two teams were behind them in second at 1-under, including Tony Green (Kingsport) and Garry Siddons (Knoxville), and Gary Pierce (Franklin) and Ronnie Law (Chattanooga). Four teams are tied for fourth.
The top four teams after Thursday’s round advance to match play in the Super Senior tournament. The semifinals will be played Friday and the championship match Saturday.
COMPLETE TENNESSEE SENIOR FOUR-BALL SCORING: https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/1832735
COMPLETE TENNESSEE SUPER SENIOR FOUR-BALL SCORING: https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/1835680