Seniors shoot super scores

Christensen holds off Kelly to win Super Senior class

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON - Rob Christensen holds his plaque for winning the Super Senior division of the Times-Republican City Golf Tournament on Sunday. Christensen finished with a two-day score of 136, just enough to beat out Pete Kelly’s 137.

While the youngsters were dueling it out in the championship flight on day two of the Times-Republican City Golf Tournament, there was a heck of a battle going on in the Super Senior class that started just prior.

Rob Christensen entered the day with a six-stroke lead after shooting a 4-under-par 67 at the American Legion Memorial Golf Course on Saturday, but Pete Kelly wasn’t about to just sit back and let Christensen take the title.

Kelly shot an impressive 6-under-par 64 on day two at Elmwood Country Club to nearly overtake Christensen for the second-ever Super Senior title, but Christensen came in with a 69 to barely beat out Kelly on the two-day scores, 136 to 137.

“I played really well, I had no complaints. Putted very well over at the Legion and made one putt here, the one I needed to on the 17th hole,” Christensen said. “Enjoyed of course playing with Tony [Giannetto] and Pete, we play together practically every day. Pete had a heck of a round with a 64, shot his age, awesome round by Pete. Really put a lot of pressure on me, I am glad I had a six-stroke lead.”

Kelly truly made his push on the second half of the front nine. After playing the first five holes at even-par, he went birdie, birdie, eagle, birdie on holes six through nine.

“I played pretty good, shot my age for the first time, so I’m pretty happy,” Kelly said.

Christensen has experience winning at nearly every level, as he’s a three-time City Open champion and the inaugural Iowa Golf Association Super Senior champion, so he said playing with someone going low in his group isn’t anything new to him.

“You can’t control what somebody else is doing. You only concentrate on what you are doing, I just held it together the best I could,” he said. “As long as I’ve been doing this, playing a lot of state tournaments and winning state championships and stuff like that, I really don’t get nervous. I’m playing with two of my best friends, so there’s nothing to get nervous about. If you’re going to get beat, might as well get beat by somebody shooting a 64.”

Kelly said he didn’t have a number in mind when the day started, he was just excited to be out on the course.

“I play with Rob all the time, we have a good time, I just had fun. It was just we tried to play good, that was it,” he said.

Not only did those two play well, but many of the other elder statesman showed their mettle as well. Tony Giannetto turned in a 72 on day two to finish with a 145 for the tournament, while Mike Anderson finished with a 152 to take fourth.

Pat Ryan was the senior champion, finishing in ninth place in the championship flight with a 72 for the round and a 6-over 146 for the tournament. Ryan’s 72 was the seventh-best score in the championship flight.

Of course in any friend group there’s a little bit of rivalry, and Christensen said he is happy to own some bragging rights.

“I always like to get the king,” Christensen said with a sly smile. “He’s the king, he always has been and always will be, but I got him this time.”

Kelly said no matter who won, the old guys on the course proved something over the last two days.

“We can play,” he said proudly.

SUPER SENIOR DIVISION

1. Rob Christensen -5 67 69 136

2. Pete Kelly -4 73 64 137

3. Tony Giannetto +4 73 72 145

4. Mike Anderson +12 74 78 152

5. Jim Carlson +20 79 81 160

6. Jeff Slaughter +28 77 92 169

7. Jack Smith +29 84 85 169

8. Doug Swenson +30 84 87 171

9. Craig Schutt +34 77 98 175

10. Don Stansberry +37 84 94 178

11. Don Anderson +38 87 92 179

12. Steve Dunham +38 82 97 179

13. Bing McHone +39 86 94 180

14. Doug Weatherman +45 96 90 186

15. Jon Bru +45 91 95 186

16. Don Dodd +47 90 97 187

Mike Knoll 86 WD WD

Gerald Hamilton 90 WD WD

Leo Lounsberry WD WD