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Masters games conclude

Despite a decreased field, the golfing portion of the District IV Masters Games of Alabama came to a successful conclusion on Tuesday afternoon.

“It’s been a great tournament,” said event organizer Elton Reece. “The people are great. The facilities are great. Everyone loves to play golf. That puts it all in one great big package.”

The competition began Monday at Valley Grande Golf Course with a field of 70 players put in flights according to age in singles competition. The two-man scramble began Tuesday, but the field dropped to 50 total players.

“Had more the first day because a lot of people like to show their own stuff,” said Karl Dee Smith. “But I like to blame it on my partner.”

The Masters Games of Alabama is a series of competitions for male and female Alabama residents, 55 and older.

Smith’s partner, Wayne Robinson, said the bad shots during a round are the ones he remembers most.

“You don’t think about the good shots you made — maybe the lucky shots,” said Robinson. “You think about the short ones you missed.”

Jessie Harris and Robert Woods shot a 62 to take first place in the men’s 60-64 age group. Reece and Ray Hollingshead finished second with a 64.

Bob Phillips and Seth Granberry combined to shoot a 69 and finish atop the 65-69 age group. John Parris and Johnny Moss Sr. shot a 70 to take second place.

The 70-74 age group went to John Lovett and Bob Reisener, who combined for a 66. Lawrence McRae and Kerwin Carson shot a 68 to finish second.

Hub Maroney and Lynn Crain topped the 75-79 group with a 70. Henry Gibbs and Bob Baker combined for a 70 to win the 80-and-over group.

Tommie Gilbert and Brenda Black were the lone entrants in the women’s 55-59 scramble. They shot an 84.

Edmonia Borden and Annye Braxton finished atop the 70-74 age group with an 87.

In Monday’s singles action, Ray Hollingshead shot a 66 to lead all players and top the 60-64 group. Jessie Harris shot a 70 to finish second, and Albert Southall followed with a 75.

Wayne Dees shot a 74 to win the men’s 65-69 group. Seth Granberry shot a 75 to finish one stroke off the lead, and Johnny Moss Sr. shot a 76 to finish two back.

Reisener’s 73 clinched the 70-74 group, and Tommy Hatchett finished one stroke back with a 74. Don Taylor shot an 81 to finish in third place.

John Lovett shot a 75 to take the 75-79 group.

The 80-84 group only had three participants. Bob Baker shot an 84 to take first place. Bob Lloyd and L.V. Beasley shot a 102 and 106, respectively, to take second and third place.

Steve Schmitt shot an 88 as the lone entrant of the 55-59 men’s group. Tommie Gilbert (55-59), Borden (70-74) and Braxton (75-79) were the lone entrants of their respective women’s groups. Gilbert shot a 78, Borden shot an 89 and Braxton shot a 95.

The players competed for gold, silver and bronze medals, but will move on to the next level if they want to.

Due to the size of District IV — nine cities were represented in the tournament — all participants are eligible for the state tournament at Blackberry Trail Golf Course in Florence on Oct. 6-7.

“This has got to be the easiest, best bunch of guys to work with you’ve ever seen in your life,” said Rex Bible, manager of Valley Grade Golf Course. “If I could just get all our tournaments to run this smooth, I’d be a happy man. I’d take them every week.”