By Rick Colvin
Due to an enveloping fog, Eddie Ambrose couldn’t see the flag on the par-3 2nd hole at Deer Creek on Feb. 11. Only able to make out the two trees behind the green, and he aimed at the one on the left. Good choice. He flushed a 178-yard 7 iron from the Tournament tee that landed 18 inches from the pin and bounced in for a hole-in-one, his second.
Bruce Bertkau had a similar experience. With the flag barely visible, he hit a 5-hybrid from the club tee. He said it felt like he had pured the shot but when he got to the green he didn’t immediately see his ball. It was in the hole for his second hole-in-one.
Ambrose was in the hole-in-one pool, but Bertkau was not. LMGA members who want to be in the new pool should bring $5 on Feb. 18 and give it to Mike Monro.
Despite their holes-in-one, neither Ambrose nor Bertkau took honors in the Individual Stableford competition within foursomes on a day that started as a whiteout and didn’t clear until many players were well into their back nines. Early on, groups would send someone ahead to scout the pin placement and make sure no golfers were in harm’s way.
Several players said they played better than usual in the fog. Not being able to see their target, they were more focused and relaxed and kept their heads down and their swings smooth.
A number of players went low. Eric Rosenstock’s hot putter helped him rack up 41 points for the high score among the 79-player field. He had four net birdies and two net eagles, those six holes alone counting for 20 of his points. He said he made at least four putts of more than 15 feet and found 12 fairways. That, he says, gave him great confidence. He also credited Chris Leake, the newly named head pro at Palmetto. “I’ve been taking a lesson from Chris every Friday for the past three months and it is starting to help, and he’s a great friend,” Rosenstock said.
Kevin Brandon, Billy Brunton, John Evans, and Gary Poleynard all won their foursomes with 40 points. Brandon birdied 6, 11, and 17; Brunton birdied the first three par 3s but missed an 8-foot putt on 17 for his fourth; Evans had 8 net birdies, 6 net pars, and four net bogeys.
Scott Stockslager chipped in on No. 17 for a birdie and won his foursome … John Bellucci had a net eagle on No. 9 to go 5 points up at the turn and went on to win … Ron Thomas had a gross score of 36 on the front nine including a birdie on No. 9 on his way to winning.
Fran Ciocari and his wife, Tracey, bought a second place here in September 2019 but still call Collegeville, Pa., outside of Philadelphia, home. Fran is still working as a financial advisor with Morgan Stanley. “We’re loving Savannah more and more every day,” he said. His lowest round ever was an 82 at Cedarbrook Country Club in Blue Bell, Pa.
David Foley, his wife, Irma, and their 11-year-old daughter, Emily, moved to The Landings last May from Northern Virginia. He retired from the federal government after many years in the Foreign Service and the Department of Homeland Security. His lowest round ever was a 73 on the South Course at Torrey Pines. That, he says, came 30 years ago and “seems to be only a dream these days.”
Joe LeBlanc and his wife, Penny, moved to The Landings for the second time from Dallas in June 2019. The couple had also lived at The Landings from 1988 to 1999. Joe was in the paper and packaging business. Joe’s lowest round ever was a 78 at Twin Creeks, outside of Dallas, Tx.; his lowest round at The Landings was an 81 on Oakridge.
The next event, B-A cup singles matches on Palmetto, is Feb. 25. Burgers and brats near the scoreboard.