Roswell, GA — Billy Mitchell, noted amateur player from Roswell, won his first Yamaha Georgia Senior Open contested at the Chattahoochee Golf Course in Gainesville. Mitchell fired a second round of four-under par 68 for a two-day total of 7-under par 137 and defeated mini-tour professional John L. Smith from Statesboro in a playoff.
Mitchell started the day tied for fourth place after a first round of three-under par 69, and got off to a torrid start by making birdies on five of his first ten holes to get to 8-under for the championship and a three shot lead. A double bogey on the 13th hole brought him back to 6-under and his lead was down to one stroke. He then proceeded to bounce back with a birdie the par four 14th hole and carded four straight pars to finish at 7-under. He then waited for the final groups to finish their rounds.
Smith, who caddies on the PGA Tour, was one of the first round co-leaders, and shot a final round of 3-under par 69 to equal Mitchell in the clubhouse. The duo returned to the 18th hole and a routine two-putt par was all Mitchell needed to defeat Smith who was unable to get up and down. For his efforts, Smith claimed the Low Professional honors and a check for $2,200. Mitchell also took home Low Amateur honors for the second straight year.
Defending champion, PGA Life Member James Mason from Dillard, finished tied in 9th place at 3-under par 141. Three-time past champion Craig Stevens from Brookstone Golf & Country Club in Acworth finished alone in third place at 6-under par 138. Rounding out the top five were PGA head professional Stephen Keppler at Marietta Country Club and noted amateur Don Marsh of Johns Creek who both finished at 5-under par 139.
Introduced for the first time in this championship was a Super Seniors Division, with amateur Dave Nichols of Roswell taking home first place with an even par score of 144 for the championship.