You can’t win them all.
That was the sentiment expressed by Heron Landing member Mike Dick following the inaugural Senior Men’s Open golf tournament there last Thursday.
Dick—the heavy favourite heading into the tournament—had an uncharacteristically inconsistent round of one-over 73 to finish in second place behind Bill Hughes.
“Off and on,” Dick said of his round following the awards ceremony. “The good shots were really good.
“The back [nine] I played well but the front . . . I couldn’t find my swing, I couldn’t find my putting stroke.”
Dick, who had captured the Men’s Open at Heron Landing back in June, began his round on the back nine due to the shotgun start format.
The round began well as Dick was one-under through his first nine holes but he struggled on the front nine of the course—going two-over to finish with a one-over par 73.
The put him one stroke back of champion Bill Hughes, who took the title with an even-par 72.
Afterwards, Dick pointed to his performance on his final two holes (the eighth and ninth) as the reason he finished in second place.
“I bogeyed the last two holes, which probably took me out of a tie for first,” he lamented.
Like most golfers who have experienced a string of bad holes, Dick could feel the round slipping away as he made a mistake—then compounded the error by trying to overcompensate.
“You just want to do the shot over again,” he said of his mindset during the final two holes.
“I think that’s probably the first thing that jumps into most players’ heads—‘if I could only have that putt over again . . . if I could only have that tee shot over again,’ I wouldn’t do what I just did.
“But it’s hard to stay in the moment sometimes. You get just a little ahead of yourself and it usually costs you,” he reasoned.
While Dick struggled to “stay in the moment,” Hughes enjoyed a steady round en route to the championship.
“I just kind of kept it in play,” he said of his round. “I really didn’t get in trouble except for on number three and I made par out of the bushes there.”
In addition to his play-it-safe approach, Hughes credited his strong short game with helping him to the title.
“I putted excellent today,” he said. “The greens were running pretty true and I putted good . . . real good.
“I made some long putts, actually for pars, on [holes] one, two, three, and four.
“Ten was probably the longest [putt] and five foot was the shortest, so I had to make some good putts right there for par,” he continued.
Hughes, a Texas native who summers at Clearwater Lake, was one-over through his first nine holes.
However, he turned his game up a notch with birdies on three holes while bogeying just two over his final nine to leave him even for the round.
Despite having what he thought was a good round, Hughes was unsure whether or not it was going to be enough to win as he came entered the clubhouse.
“I felt like I probably had a pretty good shot at it,” he said. “I thought I was playing good enough to win.”
Hughes took home a new ShopVac for his efforts while Dick earned a new golf bag as the runner-up.
In the “Super Seniors” division (age 65 and older), Ron Speck shot a round of 80 to finish in top spot—winning an impact drill.
Prizes also were awarded to the top three gross and net scores in each of the four flights.
Dick’s round of 74 was the lowest gross score in the first flight while Dave Bruyere had the lowest net score (71).
In the second flight, Brent Taylor had the low gross score (78) while Brian Hebert was the first low net (69).
Duncan Roste’s 83 was good enough to win low gross in the third flight, with John Bowiec carding a 68 to finish with the low net score.
And in the fourth flight, Chuck McPherson had the low gross (89) while Dave Jackson was the low net (65).
You can’t win them all.