MICHIGAN’S SUPER SENIOR PLAYER OF THE YEAR: South Lyon’s Rick Hagenbach Has It Figured Out
FARMINGTON HILLS – Rick Hagenbach of South Lyon and Oak Pointe Country Club found more time to golf after age 50, and found competition in Golf Association of Michigan senior tournaments after age 60.
He has it figured out, and today was named the Golf Association of Michigan’s Super Senior Golfer of the Year by Ken Hartmann, senior director of rules and competitions for the GAM.
“I feel honored with the designation, it’s great,” said Hagenbach who is 68 and has been retired from General Motors for nine years. “I’m really pleased with the Golf Association of Michigan and the way they run tournaments, and there is really great competition. There are so many good players and good guys to play with in the tournaments.”
Over the next few weeks the GAM will announce more age group players of the year for 2017. Tom Werkmeister of Grandville and Aya Johnson of North Muskegon were previously announced as the men’s and women’s players of the year and Randy Lewis of Alma and Julie Massa of Holt were named the top senior players of the year.
The winners will receive their awards in the spring at the GAM’s annual meeting for 2017. Honorees are determined based on the GAM Honor Roll, which awards points for tournament accomplishments.
Hagenbach’s key accomplishment among the Super Senior age 65-plus set was winning the Third GAM Super Senior Championship at his home course. He used a hot putter to shoot a closing 72 and win by five shots.
He finished with 160 Honor Roll points for the season topping last year’s Super Senior Player of the Year John French of Bloomfield Hills, who had 128 points. Jim Russell of Stevensville and Point O’Woods Golf & Country Club, and Lawrence Hogard of Flint and the Michigan Publinx Seniors Golf Association rounded out the top four. See the complete Honor Roll at gam.org.
“Since I retired I’ve been able to focus on playing golf,” said Hagenbach, who winters near Sarasota, Fla., and plays golf multiple times each week in the winter. “I enjoy the competitive aspect. It gets the adrenalin going. It keeps me in better shape. I play in three or four GAM tournaments each year and I really enjoy the four-ball tournaments.”
Hartmann called Hagenbach a personable, friendly golfer.
“He is a very consistent player,” he said. “The Super Senior being at Oak Pointe helped him some, but he plays well at other places and is usually in the running. He is one of those regular top 10, top 15 guys who are that age, have their health and can really play. It’s not a surprise that he is Player of the Year.”
ABOUT THE GAM: Founded in 1919, the Golf Association of Michigan is the governing body for amateur golf in the state. As a not-for-profit organization, the GAM’s purpose is to promote, preserve and serve the game of golf. The GAM, served by over 250 dedicated volunteers provides membership to almost 60,000 golfers and more than 470 Michigan golf courses, conducts over 30 amateur championships, oversees 18 USGA qualifying events, administers the GAM/USGA Handicap System and measures and rates almost 70 courses a year for the USGA. Learn more at www.gam.org.
via Greg Johnson