April 2010 - White Lake, NC - A beautiful day greeted the participants in the first of three Southern Putting Tour events at the picturesque White Lake, NC Putt Putt Golf Course at Goldston's Beach. The always popular venue and superior course conditions drew participants from as far away as Ohio, Pennsylvania and Alabama, and players were welcomed by moderate temperatures and a pleasant breeze for the 10 a.m. tee-off.
In the professional division players immediately attacked the course in the 54 hole event. 2008 PPA North Carolina State Champion Ricky Schults
led the way with a 14 under par 22. Close behind at 23 was 2008 PPA Georgia State Champion Jeff Carr
. Four players were tied for third place at 12 under par 24. The second round saw more low scoring. 2009 Eastern Open Champion Greg Newport
carded a 22, putting him in the lead after 36 holes at 47. Schults, Carr, 2009 PPA National Champion Tony Varnadore
and 1997 PPA National Champion Randy Reeves
were tied for second place at 49. 2009 Dogwood Festival Open Champion Dennis Biesma
was one stroke behind at 50. Newport struggled in the final round, carding an untimely score of 6 under par 30. Varnadore, however, did anything but struggle, orchestrating a strong finishing round of 22 to finish at 71, enough for a one stroke win. The win was the first Southern Putting Tour victory for Varnadore. 2003 PPA National Champion Robert Johnson
climbed into second place on the strength of a tournament best final round of 21, finishing tied with Carr at 72. Schults and Biesma shared fourth place one stroke back at 73. In the field of 29 pros the cash line was 78.
In the amateur division, scoring also commenced at a strong pace. 2003 APA National Champion Bonnie White
had a strong opening round of 13 under par 23. Webmaster Billy Caudle
and 2009 APA Georgia State Champion Todd Trent
were close behind at 25. 2009 APA National Champion Larry Smith
was one stroke behind Caudle and Trent at 10 under par 26. White increased her lead over the competition in round two. She had a two round score of 49. Caudle and Trent were still tied in second place at 53. Smith and 2007 APA North Carolina State Champion Chris Alley
followed closely at 54. White continued her steady play with a final round of 26 to finish at 75, good enough for a three stroke win. Trent put together a strong final round of his own at 25, finishing at 78 and alone in second place. Caudle and Smith tied for fourth at 81.
Players took a short lunch break and prepared for the second 54 hole event of the day, to commence at 3 PM.