Kelly Knievel (Senior) and Patrick Woerner (Silver) came away with gross titles in the 2019 Clark County Senior Amateur held Nov. 21-22, 2019, at Boulder Creek Golf Club. Joe Rada (Senior) and Tony Troilo (Silver) won net titles. –by Bill Bowman, Las Vegas Golf Insider.
Kelly Knievel put up 10 birdies over the two days and won the Senior Division gross title by four strokes. He was the only player to finish the two-day event under par.
It was Knievel’s second win in 2019 after a winless drought of at least 15 years. He also won the gross division in the 2019 Nevada State Senior Championship.
“I guess I’m the youngest of the old guys now,” Knievel said with a laugh. “All four of the par 5s here you can reach in two. Hit your drive in the fairway, hit the green and make a putt. It’s that easy…especially from the senior tees.”
He had two solid days from tee to green. “I hit 15 greens the first day and 14 the second day,” he said. “I drove the ball well, hit my irons well and putted pretty decent although I could have made some more putts.”
Knievel said the wins are nice, but not something he will dwell on for very long.
“The sun will come up tomorrow and it will be a whole new situation,” he said. “We’ll all just have to start again next year…if we’re physically able to swing the club.”
Kelly Knievel, 71-70—141
Gordon Schiring, 70-75—145
Gary Carpendale, 75-72—147
Joe Rada finally found his way back into the SNGA winner’s circle, winning the Senior Net title on the first playoff hole. Rada said the victory was his 10th major title on the SNGA tour.
“It’s probably been two years or so since I’ve won so this is nice,” he said. “I just played consistent both days and hit the ball very well. I hit the ball where I wanted and made some putts. I feel like I’m back to my old ways.”
He said a bad shot actually showed he was in control of his game.
“I topped the ball off the tee on one of the holes and had about 250 yards left in,” he said. “I hit my second shot onto the green and still made par on the hole. That definitely helped out a lot.”
Overall, he said he’s seen improvement over the last few events. “I played well at (Las Vegas Golf Club) and finished in the money,” he said. “”I struggled in the summer but I’ve been gaining more confidence in the last few events.”
Joe Rada, 71-69—140
Don Blanton, 70-70—140
Frank Acker, 73-73—146
Patrick Woerner won for the third time in SNGA play in 2019 following a victory at Reflection Bay back in June.
Woerner’s play was on an even keel over the two days as he shot rounds of even-par 72 both days to win by a stroke. For the event, he posted seven birdies, five bogeys and a double bogey.
“It was a tough day out here (Thursday),” Woerner said. “It was tight all the way. Frank (Ellenburg) lipped out a putt on 18 or we would have been tied.”
He said the entire round was a roller coaster. “We were tied two or three times during the round,” he said. “We both missed birdie putts on 17 and then he missed that putt, about a 20-footer, on the last hole. It was that close.”
He credited one club in his bag for the success. “I’ve got a 2-hybrid that I hit quite a few times off the tee,” he said. “It goes about 220 or 230 yards and usually leave me 90-to-100 yards in for a nice wedge. It’s really helped out my game.”
Patrick Woerner, 72-72—144
Frank Ellenburg, 73-72—145
Mark Dopheide, 73-74—147
Tony Troilo won an SNGA event in October for the first time in 15 years. The wait for his next one was much shorter this time as he won just a month after his most recent victory.
“I just played really well again,” he said. “I struggled on the back nine with my putting but I was hitting the ball well and that kind of made up for the putting.”
He added a pair of new clubs also were key. “I used my brother’s Cobra driver once and hit it well and went out and bought one,” he said. “Now I bought a Cobra 3 and 5 hybrid for about $20 and I’m hitting them great. It just shows you don’t have to spend a lot to get clubs you like and can hit well.”
And he should know. “I’ve got a bunch of clubs at home and my wife wondered why I needed these new ones,” he said with a laugh. “I told her it was simple…I couldn’t hit those anymore.”
He said one shot tells the tale of his success this week. “I did get some good luck,” he said. “I hit it in the creek on a hole but instead of staying in there it hit a rock and bounced 40 yards forward.”
Tony Troilo, 63-65—128
Jeffrey English, 69-66—135
Lee Eastman, 70-70—140