E.A. Sports Today

Chandler leads Silver Lakes

County points leader shoots a bogey-free 65 to open a two-shot lead in RTJ-Silver Lakes Championship; scores and pairings

Gary Wigington stands by as Dalton Chandler lines up his eagle putt on the final hole Saturday. Wigington had an eagle putt of similar length on the hole.

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

SILVER LAKES — Dalton Chandler still has plans to turn professional in the near future, but it’s looking now to be a little later rather than sooner.

In the meantime he continues a dominant run in the Calhoun County Golf Tour.

After a blistering start on a wet and muggy day, Chandler shot a bogey-free 7-under-par 65 and with four players remaining on the course held a two-shot lead after the opening round of the RTJ-Silver Lakes Championship.

The 21-year-old told East Alabama Sports Today after the season-opening tournament it was his plan to turn professional this year. At the time it seemed that the decision would come at the end of the season, but Saturday he suggested it would be more towards the start of next year.

“I’m just going to wait to the perfect time,” he said.

He was on target for a big round Saturday, turning in 31 and getting to 6-under after a 20-foot birdie putt on his tenth hole, Backbreaker No. 1. He didn’t make another birdie, however, until the par-5 Backbreaker No. 9, his final hole of the day.

“It wasn’t that I stopped hitting it good,” he said. “I had a few times better things could’ve happened.”

Chandler, who leads the Calhoun County Golf Tour in birdies (44), didn’t make birdie after a good drive and second shot on 15, three-putted on 16 for par and missed a five-footer on 17 for birdie. Maybe it evens out; he salvaged a par on Backbreaker 4, a drivable par-4, after plugging in the hazard with a 3-wood off the tee and chipping tight after taking a drop.

He currently holds a two-shot lead over Gary Wigington and Jeremy McGatha. Four others – Brennan Clay, Ott Chandler (playing on his 53rd birthday), Chad Calvert and Josh Jackson – all were another shot back.

McGatha was on target for a big round, too. He also turned in 5-under and was 7-under through 15 holes, but dropped shots with bogeys at 16 and 17, and hit a 3-wood over the green with his second shot on Backbreaker 9 and settled for par.

“I really, honestly, should have been 7 (under) after 11; I stuck in on 10 and 11, easy putts, too,” McGatha said. “Then when I birdied 13 and 15 to get to 7 I said OK, I’ve got two par-5s (to get more), and then it was typical Jeremy BS.”

He three-putted No. 16 and three-putted No. 17 from the fringe.

Chase Hollingsworth got his day off to a rousing start. He scored a double-eagle 2 on Mindbreaker No. 1, his first hole of the day, when he holed out a 5-iron from 203 yards. It’s the second albatross scored by a CCGT player in the history of the Tour. He shot 77.

Double eagles are said to be more rare than holes-in-one. Hollingsworth has never made an ace.

“We didn’t see it go in,” he said. “It looked real good. I knew it landed in the middle.”

This story will be updated for premium subscribers.

Championship Flight A
Dalton Chandler 31-34—65
Gary Wigington 33-34—67
Jeremy McGatha 31-36—67
Brennan Clay 34-34—68
Ott Chandler 34-34—68
Chad Calvert 35-33—68
Josh Jackson 34-34—68
Timmy Woodard 36-33—69
Bo Hayes 34-35—69
Andrew Brooks 36-33—69
Logan Archer 34-35—69

Player          534 354 444 36 434 434 545 36 72
DChandler   433 343 443 31 334 434 544 34 65
Wigington   434 344 344 33 334 444 444 34 67
McGatha      534 244 333 31 434 333 655 36 67
OChandler   435 343 444 34 434 334 445 34 68
Clay              425 354 443 34 433 434 544 34 68
Calvert          534 344 444 35 234 424 644 33 68
Jackson        534 354 334 34 435 333 544 34 68

Championship B
Tanner Roberts 35-35—70
Ty Cole 35-35—70
Michael Watson 34-36—70
Kenny Wright 37-34—71
Jacob Lecroy 36-35—71
Matt Rogers 36-36—72
Charlie Thomas 36-36—72
Adrian Geeting 40-33—73
Keith Raisanen 37-37—74
Ryan Huff 36-38—74
Casey Harmon 39-35—74

First flight
Corey Ray 38-37—75
Layton Bussey 35-40—75
Chase Thomas 40-36—76
Frank Brady 38-38—76
AJ Milwee 39-37—76
Clay Calkins 37-39—76
Blake Gilchrist 40-36—76
Brent Ludwig 38-38—76
Lewis Lecroy 38-39—77
Chase Hollingsworth 40-37—77
Caleb Bowen 39-38—77
David Kyatt 39-38—77
Lance Evans 38-40—78
Austin Minter 40-38—78
Clayton Chandler 38-40—78
Tyler Jackson 42-36—78
Alan Darnell 43-35—78
Jeff Bain 37-42—79
Andrew McDonald 40-39—79

Second flight
Tanner Wells 39-41—80
Daniel Black 42-38—80
Luke Armstrong 40-42—82
Billy Thompson 40-43—83
Benji Turley 40-43—83
Al Young 42-42—84
Andrew Miller 43-41—84
David Sanders 43-42—85
Kaine Gibson 40-45—85
Don Hill 45-40—85
Chad Reavis 41-44—85

Third flight
Ritchie White 43-44—87
Cameron McCareeth 44-46—90
Marty Branson 44-47—91
Allen Mangham 47-45—92
Curtis Barker 46-46—92
Jeremy Cline 47-46—93
Kelly Rogers 54-48—102
Dilion Davis 49-54—103
Cody Roberts 50-55—105

Sunday pairings
7:30 a.m. – Kelly Rogers, Curtis Barker, Marty Branson
7:40 – Allen Mangham, Dilion Davis, Cody Roberts
7:50 – Ritchie White, Cameron McCareeth, Jeremy Cline
8:10 – David Sanders, Kaine Gibson, Don Hill, Chad Reavis
8:20 – Billy Thompson, Benji Turley, Al Young, Andrew Miller
8:30 – Andrew McDonald, Tanner Wells, Daniel Black, Luke Armstrong
8:40 – Alan Darnall, Clayton Chandler, Tyler Jackson, Jeff Bain
8:50 – Lewis Lecroy, Chase Thomas, Lance Evans, Austin Minter
9:00 – Clay Calkins, Caleb Bowen, Brent Ludwig, Chase Hollingsworth
9:10 – Frank Brady, AJ Milwee, David Kyatt, Blake Gilchrist
9:20 – Keith Raisanen, Casey Harmon, Layton Bussey, Corey Ray
9:30 – Matt Rogers, Charlie Thomas, Adrian Geeting, Ryan Huff
9:40 – Tanner Roberts, Michael Watson, Kenny Wright, Jacob Lecroy
9:50 – Timmy Woodard, Logan Archer, Bo Hayes, Ty Cole
10:10 – Brennan Clay, Chad Calvert, Josh Jackson, Andrew Brooks
10:20 – Dalton Chandler, Gary Wigington, Jeremy McGatha, Ott Chandler

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