Eight-time PGA Tour winner and long-time Hyde Park Golf Club owner Billy Maxwell was honored a week before his 88th birthday at the third annual Claret Jug tournament named in his own and now a mid-summer staple on the Jacksonville Area Golf Association calendar.
Thirty two-man teams played at the historic Donald Ross course that Maxwell and late partner Chris Blocker bought in 1971. Maxwell, who played on a national championship at North Texas and won the 1951 U.S. Amateur, has lived in Jacksonville since then.
He will turn 88 years old on July 23 but the field got a jump on the well-wishes. Maxwell hit a ceremonial opening driver and hit down the middle about 200 yards.
Bob Dickson, who also won a U.S. Amateur, and Peter Kuchar, were the gross winners of the Maxwell Division with a best-ball 69. Mike Shea and Jack White shot a gross 74 to win the Blocker Division. The Maxwell net flight winners were Randy Nader and David Novakoski; and the Blocker net winners were Mike Heard and Steve McCune. Both teams shot 61.
JAGA Scholarships awarded
The Jacksonville Area Golf Association awarded six area students its 2017 scholarships last week during a banquet at the Queen’s Harbour Yacht and Golf Club, with each student receiving $1,000 for each semester of the 2017-18 school year.
Scholarships are renewable based on criteria such as grade point average.
The students and their club affiliation and intended college are Mason Battreall of Marsh Landing (Florida State), Michael Brown of Atlantic Beach (University of North Florida), Thomas Delores of Marsh Creek (Florida State College at Jacksonville), Russell Libby of Hidden Hills (University of Florida), Emilio Mirabilio of Sawgrass (UNF) and Lindsay Pacheco of Hyde Park (FSU).
In addition, a scholarship was awarded for the first time to a level 2 PGA assistant professional from the Northern Chapter to assist in earning a Class A certificate. The recipient is Jeff Hagar of Deerwood.
There are 28 students currently receiving aid. Since the JAGA Scholarship Trust was formed in 1974, approximately $1.7 million has been awarded to more than 300 students.
Wallace captures chapter title
Bob Wallace shot 69 in the first round and held on to beat Dan Olsen by one shot to win the Northern Chapter PGA Championship last week.
Wallace finished at 1-under-par 143. Olsen shot 71 in the second round to finish at even-par 144.
Jason Smith (145) finished third and Spencer Brown (147) fourth.
Todd Bork shot 3-over 147 to win the chapter senior title by two shots over Andy Hart.
Loeb defends title
Philip Loeb of Ponte Vedra Beach will defend his Jacksonville Area Golf Association Amateur title beginning on Thursday at the Jacksonville Golf and Country Club.
Loeb defeated John Lobb in sudden death at Queen’s Harbour last year. He recently finished his sophomore season at Elon University and is one of 13 college players in the tournament, representing schools such as Florida, Central Florida, Flagler, Stetson and Valdosta State.
There are also eight high school players in the field.
Of the 71 entries that had been received by the end of last week (the deadline was Saturday), 47 had plus-handicaps, or handicaps of 1.0 or less. The World Amateur Golf Ranking has designated the tournament as a points event.
Berman leads U.S. in Maccabiah Games
Hannah Berman of Ponte Vedra Beach shot 228 for three rounds at the Caesara Golf Club in Tel Aviv to lead the U.S. golf team to the gold medal in the Maccabiah Games.
Berman, who is transferring from West Florida to Jacksonville University this year, took the silver medal in the individual standings.
Welch added to Players chairs
Matt Welch of Fleming Island was named a vice-chair for the Players Championship volunteer leadership. The Fleming Island resident has been a Players volunteer for 10 years.
The volunteer leadership for the 2018 Players is chairman Damon Olinto; first vice-chair Adam Campbell; and vice-chairs Scot Winter, Andy Carroll, Troy Smith and Welch.
Welch holds a Bachelor of Civil Engineering from Georgia Tech and retired as president of Elkins Constructors, Inc. after 32 years of service. He is a construction consultant with DanRaye, LLC and has been on the boards of the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, the Clay County Chamber of Commerce, the Clay County Development Authority and the YMCA Board of Directors for Clay and Duval Counties. Currently he on the board for the Clay County Utility Authority and is the 2018 president-elect for Catholic Charities.