Barry Bonifield of Louisville, KY shot a round of two under-par 70 to take the overnight lead at the 2018 Kentucky Senior Open Championship, and Greg Hartsough of Owensboro, KY fired a three under-par round of 69 to lead the Super Senior Division. The tournament, which is open to amateur and professional senior golfers ages 50 and over, is being played Monday and Tuesday, August 13th and 14th at Owensboro Country Club in Owensboro, KY.
Under clear skies and light winds, sixty-one of Kentucky’s best senior amateur and professional golfers made their way around the 6,480 yard, par-72 layout at Owensboro CC. After making the turn in even-par 36, Bonifield found his groove, making birdies on #11, 13 and 14. A lone bogey on the difficult par-3 17th hole left him at -2 for the day, good enough for a one shot lead heading into Tuesday’s final round.
Bonifield, who is currently the Head PGA Professional at Crescent Hill Golf Course, is the two-time defending Kentucky PGA Senior Player of the Year. He recently returned from Scotland, where he narrowly missed qualifying for the Senior British Open Championship. He captured last year’s Kentucky PGA Senior Professional Championship by six strokes,
Trailing Bonifield by just one stroke is fellow Kentucky PGA Professional Steve Cox, who shot a round of one under-par 71. Cox started off his quest for the Kentucky Senior Open title with a bang, making eagle on the par-5 third hole and birdie on the par-4 fourth hole. Although three bogies and one birdie would drop him to -1 for the day, he is still in position to capture his first Senior Open title. Cox currently leads the Kentucky PGA Senior Player of the Year race and holds a 510 point lead over Bonifield.
In a tie for third place is a pair of amateurs in Dave Elliott of Bowling Green, KY and two-time Kentucky Amateur champion Buddy Bryant. Rounding out the top five is a group of four players who sit just three strokes behind Bonifield at one over-par – amateurs Lance Lucas (Union, KY) and Gary Backlund (Mount Sterling, KY), and professionals Keith Reese (Louisville) and T. Bruce Oldendick (Florence, KY) all shot rounds of 73 (+1).
In the Super Senior Division, which is comprised of players ages 60 and over, Greg Hartsough (a) of Owensboro, KY shot a three under-par round of 69 to take a two shot lead heading into the final day. He leads over Tom Scheuerman (a) of Pewee Valley, and by four over Elmo Greer (a) of London, KY. Jeff Ketterman of Louisville, KY and Carmello Benassi of Scottsville, KY are both tied for low professional honors after rounds of 79.
Last year’s championship was reduced to 18-holes due to weather and co-champions were declared, with amateur Stanley Ramsey and professional Randy Jewell sharing the title. Ramsey is not in the field this week, but Jewell is still within striking distance after an opening round of 77.
The final round begins at 8:00 a.m., with the Super Senior Division leaders teeing off at 8:40 a.m. and the Championship Division leaders teeing off at 11:00 a.m. Live scoring and complete coverage will be available at kygolf.org.
About the Kentucky PGA
The Kentucky PGA (KPGA) is one of the 41 sections that comprise The PGA of America. Formed in 1925, the Kentucky PGA has a professional membership of more than 325 men and women professionals across the Commonwealth of Kentucky, each of whom is dedicated to promoting the game in Kentucky. Kentucky PGA Professionals are responsible for conducting a variety of golf-related functions, which include general management, golf instruction, tournament operations, golf shop merchandising, junior golf programs, golf club repair, and much more. The KPGA is a founding member of Golf House Kentucky, the umbrella organization that manages Kentucky’s Family of Golf Organizations.