Ritch Hosker reached deep into his bag of tricks this weekend at the Lakepoint Club Championship to find some putting magic and overcome all challengers.
The elder statesman of the championship flight, Hosker sought an advantage on the weekend that led to him dusting off a 12-year-old putter and in turn, cruise to a five-shot win over Jake Lane for a two-day total of 151.
“It certainly helped today,” Hosker said about his putting on Sunday. “I switched putters, I actually went back to a putter that I didn’t use for twelve years. Third hole I four putted (on Saturday). There were quite a few people that four putted and I started rolling the ball fairly well at the end of the round and today I made a couple good putts that helped me have a little bit of room to breath coming in.”
Hosker returned to the winning circle after a prolonged absence, one that watched him play second fiddle to the likes of Shando Goodard and Travis Eggers over at least the last five club championships and a few Peace Country Opens.
“I’m pretty happy with it. Anytime I can play Travis Eggers and be in the same vicinity of him I’m quite happy and young Jake Lane is a very good up and coming golfer. He made one mental mistake and let me slide in there,” Hosker added.
The field of almost 30 golfers playing over four flights battled the elements from the first tee time on Saturday, including windy and wet conditions throughout the tournament.
Hosker explained that there’s no surefire way to combat tricky weather like the golfers faced on the weekend, but in some ways the elements might have helped players throughout the championship.
“In one way it’s easier because your ball can stray offline a little bit and it stays in play a whole lot easier,” he said. “But, everything has to be flight and the wind was swirling so it got a little bit tough with the distances. You just guess and try to do some calculations and hopefully choose the right distance.”
In the men’s first flight Jim McKinnon took home top prize with an 85-90 for a two-day total of 175 to beat Brian Baker (87-89) by one stroke.
In the senior flight, Gene Danyluk was the top dog, firing a 75-79 to run away with the win by 17 strokes over Percy Peterkin.
Kelly Smeeth was the ladies champion, her 98-92 was three strokes better than runner-up Shelly March.