06/04/04 — WCMA begins today

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WCMA begins today

By David Williams
Published in Sports on June 4, 2004 1:55 PM

It was 1999 and a group of local golfers got to talking after 18 holes. The subject, of course, was golf.

The group got to dreaming of the perfect amateur tournament, a 54-hole event that showcased the fine local courses in Wayne County and produced the county's best amateur player.

None of them knew it at the time, but the county's biggest amateur golfing event had been born.

This year marks the sixth annual Wayne County Men's Amateur Golf tournament, which began today at Walnut Creek Country Club.

The 150-man field started the first of three days of play, continuing Saturday at Southern Wayne Country Club. After the first two rounds, the field will be flighted and the action will move to Lane Tree Golf Club for the final day's action.

Golfers will take part in the Open, Senior or Super Senior divisions. Entry is open to amateur golfers age 18 or over who are residents of Wayne County or who are members on a golf course in Wayne County.

In the years that have followed since the idea for the tournament came up, amateur golfers from all parts of the area have been entering the field, anxious to try their skills against the top courses in Wayne County.

Four courses make up the rotation for the tournament. Goldsboro Municipal Golf Course, who hosted the final round of last year's tournament, will not be in the group this year but hosted the Wayne County Junior Amateur on Wednesday.

All three champions from last year -- Open champion Randy Daughtry, Senior champion Richard Costner and super senior champ Mickey Nance -- will be back to defend their titles. The three champions were crowned a round early last year after rain forced officials to shut down the final round of play and declare the second-round leaders as the champions.

The challenge of the tournament is to answer all the different challenges of each of the participating courses. Walnut Creek's greens are notoriously tricky, while Southern Wayne's open fairways dwindle into small greens. Lane Tree forces pinpoint approach shots and negotiation of several tough slopes.