NORWICH – Age would prove to still be triumphant over youth in this years edition of The Canasawacta Country Club's 58th annual Member Guest Tournament.
Prior to the start of the tournament on Thursday August 4, it was noted that there was a significant increase in the numbers of participants when compared to years past. This increase was in part due to many pairs of younger golfers stepping onto the greens to see where they could land.
The Masters flight – along with all other flights – would see some superb golfing throughout the sunny three day weekend tournament. However, the race for the ultimate tournament champion would come down to just two teams essentially, neither being newcomers to the tournament.
Tim Carson and Scott Seiler – both over 50 years old and still defeating younger teams – returning CCC Champions from 2011 and 2012 would pull off the five stroke win over Matt Burrell and Craig Dawson, 2014 champions.
After Thursday's opening round Carson and Seiler would secure a tournament low 63 score and would hold the two stroke lead over Burrell and Dawson who shot a solid 65. Not far behind were eventual third place winners Justin Bennett and Scotty Seiler who would earn a 67 on the first day.
After completion of the second round on Friday, August 5, Carson and Seiler would see a sub par day when they would manage an uncommon 68 score for the day. This slip on the second day allowed Burrell and Dawson to inch toward them in the standings after two days, as the pair would gain an overall stroke when they shot a 67. This would land Carson and Seiler at a total 131 after two days, with Burrell and Dawson earning a 132. Scotty Seiler and Justin Bennett would bring up a solid 137 score heading into the Master's Flight.
The one stroke lead heading into the final day on Saturday, August 6, proved to be nothing that Carson and Seiler would rest on. With the others in the Master's Flight battling within themselves all withing about 10 strokes or so back, it came down to a battle of prior champions.
Carson and Seiler would battle with Burrell and Dawson for most of the way, until they could eventually pull away in the latter holes on the course.
“We got off to a good start on Saturday,” said Tim Carson, Masters Flight Champion and Tournament coordinator. “Seiler hit a 40 foot birdie put on the third hole, and Craig Dawson hit it to about 10 feet of the hole and also birdied there, so we held the one stroke lead still.”
Carson and Seiler would move to the fourth hole where they successfully gained a stroke when they made bogie.
Carson explained that for much of the remaining holes approaching hole 12, the match seemed to be somewhat stalemated.
“We were up two at that point. We had a two shot swing on the seventh hole. We made birdie and they made bogie so we went to four up on them,” said Carson. “On hole 12 it felt like they were getting a little closer though.”
Matt Burrell sliced a solid tee shot which managed to actually hit the pin. However the bounce wouldn’t land in favor of Dawson and Burrell as the ball would ricochet about 10 feet away from the hole. Despite the bounce this still landed the duo in good shape.
Seiler would proceed to chip shot his ball in on the 12th hole, in somewhat of a Tiger Woods Masters fashion with the ball rolling to the top of the hill and dropping in.
After the dramatics on hole 12, hole 13 allowed Carson and Seiler to pick up another stroke moving them to then being up five strokes on their opponents.
“We both hit solid tee shots within 15 feet. At that point we were just looking for nothing to go wrong and hold on,” said Carson.
Much as Carson attested, hole 15 would see the previous 2014 champions Burrell and Dawson push once more for the lead as Carson and Seiler uncommonly stumbled some, with Seiler missing a short put for par on the hole.
Carson and Seiler, seasoned vets of the game would close out the tournament, earning a par on hole 17 and ending with a birdie on hole 18, pulling the lead to a grand strokes. Carson and Seiler's total on the third day would be a 67 for a total of 198 in the tournament, while Dawson and Burrell would shoot 71 for a total of 203.
With Carson and Seiler earning the Masters flight win it marks another year of the CCC Member Guest Golf Tournament concluded, going off without a hitch with Norwich's finest enjoying the weekend sun on the greens of the local country club, and with that another champion has been crowned.
Below are the top three finishers of each flight and their scores for each day and totals:
Masters: 1st – Tim Carson and Scott Seiler 63-68-67- 198
2nd – Matt Burrell and Craig Dawson 65-67-71- 203
3rd – Justin Bennett and Scotty Seiler 67-70-68- 205
Oakmont: 1st – Dennis Rifanburg and Jeff Rivenburg 68-77-71- 216
2nd – Harry Myers and Josh Dolbin 75-67-78- 220
3rd - Lee Skillin and Jim Gorski** 71-72-78- 221
Baltusrol: 1st – Steve Haskins and Daryl Stevens 74-75-73- 222
2nd – Mark DeMellier and Jim Jones** 75-75-73- 223
3rd – Bryan Smith and Ken Benjamin 76-74-73- 223..