By Kevin Edwards
Group Sports Editor
Just a month after a violent storm made mincemeat of the course, Honesdale Golf Club hosted one of its oldest events … and the conditions couldn’t have been much better.
A total of 48 teams teed off beginning on Friday for the 47th Annual Member-Guest Tournament.
The event lasted all weekend long and ended with Eric Williams and Bill Phillips taking home the title.
And, while the level of golf was spectacular as always, the first order of business for longtime organizer Bob Simons was recognizing the efforts of HGC’s talented Course Superintendent.
“Chris Moran and his crew did a fantastic job,” he said. “I can’t believe how great it looks. The course is just pristine. Chris and his guys are absolutely to be commended for all their hard work.”
More than two dozen trees were destroyed by the storm that pummeled Wayne County on Tuesday, May 15. Greens and fairways were extensively damaged by the system which spawned at least two tornadoes locally.
“We were probably lucky if you look at the bigger picture,” Simons said.
“But, we still had a big mess on our hands. As a club, we’re very fortunate to have someone as good as Chris working for us.”
***On the Links The team of Williams and Phillips punched their ticket to this year’s Member-Guest championship match via a 3 & 2 win over Irv Williams and Frank Osborne.
They were joined in Sunday’s marquee match by the duo of Zach Tamblyn and Dr. Brian Brown. The defending champions advanced to the final thanks to a razorthin 1-up decision over Trevor Warring and John Donofrey.
The 2018 title tilt was very nearly a dead heat through the opening nine holes. However, that’s when Eric Williams got hot with his putter.
The former Honesdale High School links star rolled in a pair of long birdie putts on the back side in leading his team to victory.
The final score through 18 holes was 3 & 2.
“Billy played very well,” Simons said. “But, Eric is just so steady. He very rarely gets himself in trouble and when he starts knocking down putts like that, you’re in trouble.”
The team of Jeff Tamblyn and Curtis Haley finished third in the Championship Flight, carding an 18-hole total of 70.
Jim Gardas and Howard Vroon captured the crown among First Flight teams.
Gardas and Vroon have won the overall event many times, but this time around were bumped from the Championship Flight with an uncharacteristic loss on Day One.
Nevertheless, this dynamic links duo bounced back to take First Flight honors. They defeated the team of Mead Sandercock and Taylor Murray by a score of 2& 1.
Don Stanton and Mark Bartkowski wound up third with a sizzling 67.
In Second Flight action, Mike Motsko paired up with Kenny Bolcavaga to defeat Tim Moffitt and Kyle Moffitt, 4& 3.
Scott and Tom Corrigan were third with a round of 73.
The team of Ben Krempasky and Dave Osborne copped Third Flight laurels by downing Newton Mullins and Tom McCorkmick, 2& 1.
The father-son duo of Andy Kussoff and Evan Kussoff claimed third with a 75. In Fourth Flight competition, Jim Fulkerson and Don Manley defeated the duo of Ron Gardas and Dan Vroon, 1-up.
Pete Tonetti and Al Dahlgren finished third at 77.
Jeff Firmstone and George Muller were Fifth Flight champs after carding a 2& 1 win over Dwight Gregory and Grant Gregory.
The team of Dave Phillips and Andy Falonk wound up third with a round of 76.
Overall medalists for this year’s edition of the HGC Member-Guest were Corey Teeple and Kevin Karabin.
The former Western Wayne standouts brought the course to its knees on Friday by shooting an eyepopping score of 62.
Teeple and Karabin came within a whisker of knocking out the eventual champs, losing a 1-down heartbreaker on the 19th hole versus Williams and Phillips.
The next big tournament on the agenda at Honesdale Golf Club is the Memorial.
This much-anticipated annual event is scheduled for the weekend of July 7-8.
“It’s the one time each year where we take stop and remember all of those members who’ve passed away,” Simons said. “It’s a really nice tradition. We all look forward to it.”
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Honesdale Golf Club
121 Golf Hill Road
PO BOX 573
Honesdale, PA 18431
Phone: (570) 253-5616
Fax: (570) 616-4650
Honesdale Golf Club is a 501(c)(7) nonprofit organization.