Pete Williams Wins 53rd Senior Amateur
Pete Williams outlasted 144 of the top senior amateur golfers in the state to capture the 53rd Senior Amateur Championship at Vero Beach Country Club in Vero Beach on April 15-17.
Pete Williams of Juno Beach, put together a solid performance on Thursday en route to capturing his second individual State Championship. Williams opened with a three-over par 75, to find himself five shots off the lead entering the second round. Williams rode the momentum of his hole-in-one in the first round to fire the low round of the Championship in round two with a five-under par 67. Williams’ second round was highlighted by an eagle on the par 5 eighth hole to go along with his five birdies and only two bogies. After rounds of 75-67, Williams would take a three shot lead heading into the final round of play.
Standing on the first tee on Thursday, Williams looked poised to capture the Senior Amateur Championship. Williams would open with a front nine score of even par 36, to take a three shot lead into the final 18-holes of play. With solid pars on holes 10-13, Williams would hit the accelerator making birdies on 14, 16, and 17 to open up a commanding lead as he approached his final hole of the tournament. After hitting a solid tee shot and approach on the 18th hole, Williams would two putt for his round of three-under par 69 to win the 53rd Senior Amateur Championship by six strokes.
Michael Cox of Naples, and David Roschman of Jupiter, finished tied for second place with a tournament total of one-over par 217. The Defending Champion and reigning Senior Player-of-the-Year, Doug LaCrosse of Tampa, finished in fourth place after rounds of 76-72-72. The 2007 Champion, Rick Woulfe of Fort Lauderdale, finished tied for fifth place with a tournament total of 221. In all, sixty-nine players advanced to play the final round posting 156 or better.
Since the number of entries received has always surpassed the capacity of the Championship, a qualifying stage was instituted in 2005. While 60 players earned exempt status through a variety of different means, more than 300 participants attempted to qualify at one of seven sites across the state, as competitors played 18 holes of stroke play hoping to advance to the Championship. Participants must be 55 or older to participate in the Championship.