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    Overton gets on a roll in North Florida Open


    © St. Petersburg Times, published May 8, 2001

    Jay Overton took his A game to the fourth annual North Florida Open at Plantation Inn and Golf Resort in Crystal River on April 26-27.

    Overton, 50, host pro at Innisbrook Troon Golf Institute, shot a 5-under 67 the first day and 68 the second for a 135 total in 36-bogeyless holes on the 6,323-yard layout.

    He posted a three-stroke margin over runners-up Frank Reynolds (73-66-139) of Palm Harbor, the head pro at The Eagles, and Dan Wood (70-69-139) of Orlando.

    Overton made five birdies in his opening round and four in his final round. He birdied the par-5 fourth (495 yards) and 16th (484) both days.

    It was the 18th North Florida PGA victory for Overton, including three titles each in the North Florida Section Championship and the Match Play Championship. He earned $1,500 for the win.

    Overton played in Monday's 5qualifier for this weekend's Senior PGA Tour's Enterprise Rent-a-Car Match Play Championship in the St. Louis area. The tournament will be played at Boone Valley Golf Club in Augusta, Mo.

    Larry Nelson is the defending champion in the $2,000,000 event.

    Overton also has entered Monday's U.S. Open qualifier at Disney's Open Pines course at Lake Bueno Vista.

    NORTH FLORIDA OPEN NOTES: John Wright of Dunedin shot 72-73-145 to tie for ninth with Bobby Stroble of Orange Park and Brandon's Vito Saputo. Jim Smith of Missing Links Range in Largo was 2 strokes back in 147.

    Stan Coveleskie of Seminole won the amateur 50-59 net division, carding a 68-67-135. And Don Keegan of Seminole finished second (81-79-160) in the 60-and over amateur gross class.

    STATE CLUB CHAMPIONSHIP: St. Petersburg Country Club staked out a four-stroke lead after the opening round of the tournament on Saturday at Bonita Springs.

    But St. Petersburg fell off the pace Sunday to finish sixth (297-328-625) overall in the 40-team field.

    Playing in the five-team members format, the former Lakewood Country Club group shot 297 the first day and 328 the second. However, the opening round was played at Bonita Country Club's Bay Island course and the second at the Creekside course.

    Carson Crooms, 16, a sophomore at Canterbury School, who shot an even-par 72 the first day and 84 the second, said there was a big difference in the courses.

    "On Sunday the fairways were tight with close hazard lines," Crooms said. "And the wind was really gusting, which everyone had to deal with."

    Crooms had three birdies and three bogeys in his best tournament round, 72.

    P.J. Penrose, a 2001 graduate of the University of Florida, led the team with rounds of 73-78-151. He was followed by Crooms (156), club champion Spencer Gaylord (160) and Tom Gault and left-handed Brian Borschel, both 161.

    STATE CLUB NOTES: The Club at Emerald Hills from Hollywood won the tournament with scores of 301-310-611.

    Wentworth finished 22nd. The team was headed by David Niles (157) and included Jason Allen (160), Jack Gleason (168) and Kris Gaetz, who finished even with Bob Bhend at 172.

    TWIN BROOKS: Largo's Steve Hensley shot a 57 in the annual One-Club Tournament on the par-3 St. Petersburg city course May 1. He used a wedge.

    Mark Nelson logged a 63 for second place, followed by Tim McFadden with a 64.

    In the women's division, Rita O'Neil of Largo used a 6-iron to shoot 66 and beat Paty Cortez by 18 strokes.

    In the net division, Jim Royall won with a 56. He was followed by Russ Allen's 59. The ladies net went to Amber Pederson (65). Larraine Allard (74) was the runner-up.

    The tournament drew a field of 70.

    DUNEDIN: Bob Donaldson won the Dunedin Country Club Championship for the eighth time two weeks ago, defeating Tom Riedl 4 and 3.

    In the seniors division final, Tony Ruberto beat Ralph Brown.

    Joyce Hatt defeated Joan Boylan for the women's title, with Mary Heselton taking the senior crown over Rimp Horn.

    Dunedin played host to the annual City Invitational on Saturday. Donaldson was the winner, this time with a par 72.

    He won a replica of the first Gene Sarazen Teacher's Award, which was given to the winner of the annual PGA Seniors Championship. The tournament was held at Dunedin Country from 1954-1962.

    Ken Burgenhagen, the 2000 club champion, finished second with a 74, followed by Dunedin High School junior Robby Walters with a 75.

    The tournament was preceded with a marching performance up the 13th fairway by the City of Dunedin Pipe Band, led by Sandy Keith.

    The post-tourney banquet featured a $2,000 scholarship grant to Robert Chapman, a senior at Dunedin and captain of the golf team the last two years.

    Chapman has a 3.80 grade-point average and combined SAT score of 1,320. He's 22nd in a class of 297. He also was a member of the soccer and tennis teams.

    Chapman is a member of the Student Council and National Honor Society. He plans to attend the University of Florida and pursue a pre-law major.

    COLLEGE CONFERENCE: Ryan Gildersleeve (Clearwater) finished second for South Alabama in the Sun Belt Championship in Roanoke, Texas. He carded a 79-72-70-221 on the par-72 course to place ninth overall.

    JUNIORS: Courtney Harter, 11, of Clearwater shot 79-79-157 for 36 holes from advanced tees, winning her age division in the Plantations Junior Golf Tour event at the Disney Magnolia course April 28-29.

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