2019 Michigan Tournament of Champions July 29 – 31 At Boyne Mountain Resort
Defending Champion Alex Scott Leads Stellar Field in 2019 Tournament of Champions at Boyne Mountain Resort
BOYNE FALLS – Alex Scott turned professional earlier this summer and was working with conditional status on the Mackenzie Tour PGA-Canada when three weeks ago he suddenly needed appendicitis surgery.
The surgery set the Traverse City golfer back for a few weeks in his golf schedule, but he plans to defend his championship starting Monday in the 28th Tournament of Champions at Boyne Mountain Resort.
“It hit me really fast,” he said. “I started feeling discomfort about 11:30 in the morning that day and I was in surgery by 9:30 that night. By 3 in the afternoon I couldn’t stand up. It was really painful. It was brutal.”
The former Grand Valley State University standout said he has been playing again in recent days, and this week is playing in the Kalamazoo Invitational before heading to Boyne Mountain.
“I’m not stressing about it, sitting at home thinking I should be practicing,” he said. “I’m not going to do anything rash. I have to let it heal. The incisions are still sensitive. It was a forced break and not at a good time because I missed chances to qualify on the Mackenzie Tour (PGA-Canada).”
He said he feels close to playing well.
“It’s just a matter of time,” he said. “I’m not quite my normal self but getting better every day. I still feel like I should go to Boyne and I expect to be near the top. I’ve grown in the last two or three years. I know that I’ve been working on the right stuff and that the good play will come, maybe not tomorrow, or in five days or three days, but it will come.”
A year ago, Scott shot the best round of his life tying the course and tournament record with an 11-under 61 final round on the Alpine Course, and then won a sudden-death playoff with Mackenzie Tour player Sam Weatherhead of Grand Rapids.
Scott was the first amateur to win in the history of the unique tournament that includes juniors, seniors, professionals and amateurs of both sexes all playing for one title from different tee positions. All who are invited have won selected significant Michigan golf championships, both amateur and professional.
He heads this year’s field of 119 champions playing in the field, including 18 who are members of the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame and nine past winners of the Tournament of Champions.
“It’s another strong field with great champions, professional and amateur, college players, mini-tour professionals and several of our top Michigan PGA Section players and Hall of Fame members,” said Justin Phillips, the tournament director for the Michigan PGA Section, which sanctions and administers the unique championship. “It is the 28th year and it remains one of the most unique tournaments in the country.”
The 18 Michigan Golf Hall of Famers in the field include Bob Ackerman, Ken Allard, Steve Brady, Ron Beurmann, Brian Cairns, Greg Davies, Randy Erskine, Tom Harding, Scott Hebert, Lynn Janson, Dave Kendall, Larry Mancour, Suzy Green-Roebuck, Jeff Roth, Jack Seltzer, John Traub, Tom Werkmeister and Buddy Whitten.
The nine past champions include Scott, 2017 winner Mike Nagy, 2016 winner Korey Mahoney, 2015 winner Barrett Kelpin, two-time champion Andy Ruthkoski (2013, ’14), five-time champion Jeff Roth (2012, 2008, 1999, ’96 and ’95), 2011 winner Lee Houtteman, 2009 winner Scott Hebert and 1997 winner Tom Harding.
They will join champions from all the categories and even members of the same families in the three-day, 54-hole stroke play championship on two courses. The Monday round and Wednesday’s final round are on the classic Alpine course, and Tuesdays round is on The Monument course. A 36-hole cut to the low 60 scorers and ties follows the second round. This year’s purse is $55,000. As an amateur with a year to go at GVSU, Scott could not accept the $8,000 for winning last year. That check went to Weatherhead.
In addition to a celebration of champions, the tournament is a family affair of champions. Family combinations entered include brothers Andrew and Travis Dodson, brothers Ben and Josh Proben, father-son Jack and John Seltzer, father-son Frank and Frank IV McAuliffe, father-son Tom and Parker Jamieson, father-son Denis and Darrin Husse and father-son Gary and Brad Smithson.
ABOUT BOYNE MOUNTAIN RESORT: Boyne Mountain Resort has been a favorite Midwest destination since 1948. The family-owned, four-season resort has earned Certificates of Excellence from TripAdvisor, and has been recognized by Conde Nast Traveler readers as being among the top 50 Best Places to Ski and Stay in North America. The waterpark is listed among Budget Travel’s Top 10 Indoor facilities and the resort is a readers’ choice favorite of Spa Magazine. Boyne Mountain is home to The Alpine and The Monument golf courses, as well as 60 runs on 415 skiable acres. Cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, Solace Spa, Michigan’s largest indoor waterpark, Zipline Adventures, disc golf facilities, lift-serviced mountain biking, beach activities, kids programs, lodging, meeting and wedding facilities as well as real-estate are offered at the resort.
BOYNE Golf is a collection of ten courses at three resorts (Boyne Highlands, Boyne Mountain, and Inn at Bay Harbor) located within 15 miles of Petoskey, MI. Beyond the world-class golf, Boyne Golf is centered amid one of America’s most beautiful vacation spots. The scenic Lake Michigan beach towns of Charlevoix, Harbor Springs and Petoskey are minutes away, and a side trip to Mackinac Island is easily managed. Guests can enjoy award-winning spas, waterfront dining, sandy beaches, watersports, gaming, microbreweries, wineries, hiking, biking, tennis, zip-lining, shopping and more capped by the spectacular northern Michigan sunsets. For more information on Boyne Golf, visit www.boynegolf.com.
SCORING: Live scoring and tee times will be available at www.michiganpgagolf.com
NOTE: Gallery is welcome. Parking and admission are free.
via Greg Johnson