HOME COURSE HERO: Greg Davies Wins GAM Senior Championship
ORCHARD LAKE – Several times last week fellow Orchard Lake Country Club members came up to Greg Davies of West Bloomfield and told him he should have a great chance to win the GAM Senior Championship that the club was hosting.
“I started to feel a little pressure from that,” said the 15-year member and four-time club champion.
The pressure didn’t seem to bother him as the Michigan Golf Hall of Fame member didn’t miss a fairway, missed just one green, shot a 3-under 68 and came from behind to win the 37th GAM Senior Championship presented by Rocket Tour Tuesday.
The 55-year-old Davies, a former Michigan Amateur Champion and GAM Mid-Amateur champion playing in his first GAM Senior Championship, started the day six shots off the lead after an opening 73 Monday. His 68 gave him a 1-under 141 total, three shots clear for the win.
Ron Perrine of Holt, who shot 72, and Jerry Gunthorpe of Ovid, who shot 71 to close, tied for second at 144.
The championship also recognizes the Super Senior Division for players 65-plus, though the entire field plays from the same tees and competes for the overall championship. Perrine, who is 72, took home the Super Senior trophy.
Two-time champion Steve Maddalena of Jackson, who shot 75 for 148, was fourth, and three players, Mitch Wilson of Portage, Jim Barnes of Bloomfield Hills and Joe Michalek of Birmingham tied at 149. Wilson finished as the runner-up in the Super Senior Division.
Davies, who will be 56 next week and built his Hall of Fame career with multiple Michigan Publinx titles as well, said his goal at the start of the year is to finish in the top 10 of the GAM honor roll points for men.
“If I do that, then I feel I’ve had a good season,” he said. “Now that I’m a senior, I dearly wanted to win this trophy. I’m so glad to get it in my first one right out of the gate.”
He said he had a great day at the perfect time.
“I just really never missed a shot,” he said. “I don’t think I missed one drive or iron shot the whole day. On 10 my first putt was about a 20-footer and I hit it 10-foot past. I made the one coming back and that kind of kept me going. That was the key shot of the round.”
Perrine, 72, said he practices martial arts, including meditation, and it has helped him maintain his golf game. He said he never looks at the scores during rounds but he had a feeling he had at least a chance for the Super Senior title.
“I finally made a few putts today, compared to yesterday when I had 35 putts,” he said. “I came here thinking win the Super Senior, but it’s nice to know I was in the hunt for the overall title, too. It always feels great to win.”