*Super-Senior Player of the Year standings
*Super-Senior Silver Cross standings
*Super-Senior Silver Cross history
*Day One results
*Lange takes Senior Amateur title
McClaskey’s final-hole birdie clinches 2, almost 3, Super-Senior titlesPLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa.–Charles McClaskey of Back Creek GC hauled in the Super-Senior version of a King’s Ransom on Wednesday at a challenging and windy Sunnybrook GC (par 72, 6,141 yards). Battling a gusty back-nine breeze and treacherous putting surfaces, the 71-year-old former elevator constructor carded a final-round 73 to win the Senior Amateur Championship Super-Senior title by two strokes over division rookie James Robertson of Saucon Valley CC. In doing so, McClaskey also clinched the Super-Senior Silver Cross and, barring an unlikely long and sustained run at the U.S. Senior Amateur Championship by any his rivals, the Super-Senior Player of the Year Award.
McClaskey stamped all three feats with one dramatic 20-foot downhill birdie on the final hole.
McClaskey, who finished the two days with a 147 total, forged through Wednesday’s difficult conditions with great precision, hitting 17 of 18 greens in regulation. On No. 18 (par 4, 344 yards), after watching eight consecutive birdie bids slip away, McClaskey asked an official on the green for his placing as it pertained to both the event and Super-Senior Silver Cross standings, before rolling in his one and only second-round birdie.
The putt added a bit of fluff to his final Senior Amateur Championship victory margin, but just as important, gave McClaskey a one-shot edge over longtime buddy O. Gordon Brewer, Jr. of Pine Valley GC for the Super-Senior Silver Cross.
“He’s gotten me a couple of times and it’s satisfying for me to get him,” said a gracious McClaskey. “That was the longest putt I had on the back nine. I wanted to make it without drilling it by. I knew I hit a good putt going down there. I really wanted to make that putt, of course, I wanted to make all the rest, too, but they didn’t go in. It was almost dead center. That was my first one-putt of the day.”
A myriad of contenders made a run at McClaskey throughout the morning. However, in the end, his closest foe was Robertson. Playing in only his second Golf Association of Philadelphia Senior competition, the 66-year-old resident of Bethlehem, Pa. almost provided himself with the ultimate birthday present. He turned a year older today.
Robertson settled his nerves with a birdie on No. 1 (par 4, 341 yards) but bogeyed the front side’s two par 5s, No. 3 (par 5, 489 yards) and No. 7 (par 5, 489 yards), to make the turn in 1-over-par 37. At that point, McClaskey held a one-shot advantage.
“I knew I had to make some birdies [coming in],” said Robertson. “I played with Charlie and Gordon at the Chapman [Cup (Gross)]. I knew Charlie wasn’t going to give it to me, so at that point I had to go out and get it.”
Robertson opened his final push with a birdie on No. 10 (par 5, 510 yards) but seemingly every time he gained some momentum with an under-par figure, a bogey or worse reared its ugly head. Case and point, a double bogey on No. 11 (par 4, 386 yards) after a poor chip and three-putt countered his good work on the hole prior. Robertson continued to grind, however, and responded with a birdie on No. 13 (par 4, 374 yards) with a 6-iron from 155 yards to four feet. He posted another bogey-birdie combination on No. 15 (part 3, 159 yards) and No. 16 (par 5, 504 yards), before facing a 25-foot putt from just off the front of the No. 18 green for the tie.
His effort stopped a foot short and dead in the heart.
“At that point I knew I had to get another birdie,” said Robertson, a long standing Saucon Valley CC member. “[Close friend] Tom Bartolacci convinced me I should be playing [in Golf Association of Philadelphia events]. He can be difficult [wink, wink] at times if you don’t listen to him.”
NOTES-The Super-Senior Silver Cross is awarded to the player with the lowest aggregate score in the Warner Cup (Gross), Chapman Cup (Gross) and Senior Amateur Championship rounds.