The Michigan Amateur is being played this week at Cascade Hills Country Club near Grand Raids. In 1927, the Michigan Amateur was played at Washtenaw Golf Club (course link) with Ann Arborite John Malloy winning over Budd Hewitt of Kalamazoo.
Malloy also would win the 1928 Michigan Amateur at Kent Country Club and the 1929 at the Country Club at Detroit. He finally surrendered the title in 1930 to Chuck Kocsis at Belvedere.
The score card looked like this:
The Detroit Free Press from July 31, 1927 reported:
Johnny Malloy Wins State Amateur Golf Title By Downing Bud Hewett 3-2
First Round Lead Staves Off Rally of Upstate Rival
District Champion Piles Up Margin of Five Holes In Morning and Caries it To Twenty-Seventh Hole
Kalamazoo Golfer Stages Spurt On Final Nine, But Turn Comes Too Late To Alter Result
by M.F. Drukenbrod
Ypsilanti, July 30 — A long and tedious climb, which began back in 1923 at grand Rapids, when as a 16-year-old boy, he completed his first state tournament, finally brought Johnny Malloy of Ann Arbor to the top here this afternoon when he defeated Bud Hewitt, the Kalamazoo southpaw, in their 36 hole final, 3 and 2.
A qualifier year after year, Mallow always was good for one or two victories at match play, but never was able to make any further headway, no matter how bright his prospects seemed, as was the case last year at Lochmoor when he fell before William Courtney in the round preceding the semi-final after he had won the district championship.
Given another chance yesterday, through his brilliant victory on Friday over Dave Ward, he set out early to take full advantage of it, insuring himself victory by acquiring a five-hole lead on the morning round, which protected him against a determined stand made by Hewett later in the match.
In winning Malloy equaled the record of Jimmy Standish, Detroit Country Club veteran, the only other golfer to win both the state and district championships the same year, a mark he set in 1924.
Washtenaw’s routing has changed since the 1927 Michigan Amateur. Based on the reported pars, the two nines have switched position. What was “out” in 1927 is now the back nine. “In” is the modern front nine.
I prefer the modern routing. Finishing eighteen on a par 3 just doesn’t feel right.
New Washtenaw owner Dave Kendall (a Michigan Golf Hall of Famer) has been working with noted architect Ray Hearn to restore Washtenaw to its 1920s-1930s glory. The changes thus far have been terrific.
Nineteen twenty seven was the last year Washtenaw Golf Club hosted a Michigan Amateur. It was not, however, the last time the club hosted a Golf Association of Michigan Championship. Washtenaw was the host for the 1971 Michigan Women’s Amateur, the 1989 GAM Mid Amateur, the 2013 GAM Women’s Mid Amateur, the 2014 GAM Women’s Senior Four Ball, the 2015 Michigan Junior Amateur, the 2017 Michigan Junior Girl’s championship, the 1961 and 1976 Atlas Trophy Championships, the 1974 and 1992 Fuller Cups, and the 2014 Net Amateur.