Pro golf among Lake Placid activities; Sanchez wins at Whiteface
LAKE PLACID, N.Y. – As he did Thursday at the Whiteface Club in Lake Placid, Javier Sanchez overcame a slow start with a hot putter Friday and won the Adirondack Senior Open, the northernmost stop on the Sunbelt Senior Tour.
The Fayetteville, Ga. golfer shot a final round 4-under par 67 on a warm, partly sunny day en route to a five-shot victory over Jim Chancey.. Sanchez posted rounds of 65-69-67 for a 12 under par total of 201.
Javier Sanchez hits his tee shot on the 16th hole Friday en route to victory/Whiteface Club and Resort photo
The winner bogeyed the second and third holes, before rolling in birdie putts on 4-5-6-8-9 and 12. After a bogey on the long, difficult par three 14th, he closed with a final tap-in birdie on the par five 18th hole, leaving his eagle chip staring into the bottom of the cup.
“After the third hole, I said, ‘Come on, man, you can play better,’” said the 54 year old Sanchez. “I knew I could shoot two or three under. (Girlfriend) Lia told me to stay focused. ‘You can do it.’”
Now in its third year, this is the second Adirondack Senior Open title for Sanchez, who has played in five U.S. Opens and three U.S. Senior Opens. In his immediate future, he’ll play in senior competitions in Cooperstown, N.Y. and Lakewood, N.J. over the next two weeks.
But his eyes are on a bigger prize – qualifying for the Champions Tour.
“I have no sponsors,” said Sanchez, who came to the United States as a 17 year old from
Mexico and later become an American citizen. “I’m working with a group of guys to hopefully back me.”
He planned on staying in Lake Placid for a few extra days, to play some other golf courses and enjoy the mountain environment.
“After playing each day, I didn’t practice,” Sanchez remarked. “I just went to relax. It’s so beautiful here. You come up to this place and it detoxes your body.”
Chancey, of Kissimmee, Fla., was a distant second, also closing with 67 for seven under 206.
Five-time PGA Tour winner Danny Edwards, of Scottsdale, Ariz., was next, shooting 68 for three under 210.
Tim Balmer, of North Lauderdale, Fla., second heading into the final round, recorded a two over par 73 and wound up tied for fourth place with Barry Conser, also of Scottsdale. Conser shot 72 in the last round.
Both ended tournament play at two under 211.
Sunbelt Tour officials and Lake Placid tournament hosts have announced that the 2014 event will be held, once again, just before the Labor Day weekend. There will be a pro-am on Tuesday and the 54 hole competition Wednesday through Friday.