Pinehurst evokes memories for area senior

June 26, 1994|By John W. Stewart | John W. Stewart,Sun Staff Writer

The recollections came flooding back to Perky Cullinane after he became one of the area qualifiers for this week's U.S. Senior Open, to be played over the No. 2 Course at Pinehurst (N.C.) Country Club.

Cullinane, 59, from Chevy Chase and Columbia Country Club, recalled standing in the 18th fairway during the fourth round of the 1962 U.S. Amateur at the same Pinehurst course facing a big decision.

Cullinane was clinging to a 1-up lead over E. Harvie Ward Jr.

For that week, it wasn't just the Harvie Ward of the San Francisco Golf Club, or Harvie Ward, with championship credentials that included two U.S. Amateurs, a British Amateur and a Canadian Amateur. This was North Carolina native son Harvie Ward, a sentimental favorite.

These biased feelings were obvious among the spectators.

Cullinane's caddy was "Stovepipe," a legend himself in that local golfing community. Standing in the fairway, Cullinane looked at Stovepipe for some counsel in preparing for what was going to be a most important shot. "Don't ask me to pull the stick, Mr. Perky," Stovepipe told his player. "You're a nice man and a fine golfer, but I just can't do it. Not here."

Cullinane chose a five-iron for the shot and the ball stopped three feet from the hole. Moments later, he had a 2-up victory.

Cullinane was to lose his next match, but his place in at least one man's mind was secure.

"I saw Ward at the Senior Open in Lake Tahoe in 1985, and as I walked toward him, he said, 'Don't say a word. I know who you are and I don't want to talk about it,'" Cullinane recalled last week.

Jack Nicklaus is the defending champion, and the field will include several others from that 1962 tournament, including Jim Colbert, Charles Coody, Labron Harris Jr., and Jay Sigel.

Harris, the eventual champion, has received a special exemption for this week's event. Billy Casper (1983) will be the only champion since 1981 not entered.

Morris to defend

Bob Morris, president of a management consulting firm in Fairfax, Va., will be the defending champion when the Alaska International Pro-Am is held this weekend at Elmendorf Air Force Base in Juneau.

HTC Last year, in what was then called the Alaska Open, Morris, a one-time Maryland State Amateur champion, won with a tournament-record 68-71-71-64274. Additionally, the 64 was a course record.

Last year, Morris was at the tournament site with clients when asked to play. This time, tournament officials have strengthened the field with tour pros George Archer and Lon Hinkle joining regular Casper among 50 tour and club pros. Some 100 amateurs will be paired with the pros for the first two rounds, with the low 50 amateurs continuing with the pros in the revised 54-hole format over the 6,689-yard, par-72 course.

"The prize money is nice, but I'm coming to fish," Archer told officials. "Casper told me about the tournament and how big the halibut and salmon are. How could I not go?" The purse will be between $50,000 and $75,000, with a top pro prize of $10,000.

Also in the amateur group is Morris' Chesapeake Cup partner Doug Ballenger, a former Baltimorean now working in Augusta, Ga.

Morris spoke of 20 hours of "golf daylight" and added, "One of my favorite recollections of last year's trip was the sign I saw in a golf shop: 'Carts Must Be In By Midnight.' "

PGA Juniors

One of three Middle Atlantic PGA qualifying events for the Maxfli/PGA Junior championship will be played at Forest Park Golf Course tomorrow, where 50 boys will compete in four age groups.

They will be playing for 32 available places in the section championship July 25 at Port America CC. Moving on will be the low 14 in the 16-17 group; the low eight in both the 12-13 and 14-15 groups, and the low two in the 11-under.

The other qualifying events are tomorrow in Richmond, Va., and one July 6 at Reston (Va.) National.

Five ex-champions

The field for the 27th Maryland Amateur Stroke Play championship, limited to 160 players, will include former winners Bill Dornbusch (1970), Bob Morrison (1985), Bob Kaestner (1987), Greg Henry (1988) and Buddy Peoples (1992).

ka,3 Single rounds will be played Friday through next Sunday at Mount Pleasant Golf Course.

This week's schedule

Tomorrow--Middle Atlantic PGA pro-am, The Bay Club, Berlin, 8 a.m.; Middle Atlantic PGA Junior qualifying, Forest Park GC, 11 a.m. Tuesday--Women's Golf Association, Eagle's Nest and Suburban Club, 9 a.m. Friday--Maryland Amateur Stroke Play, Mount Pleasant GC, 7 a.m.

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