Signed up to play in Griffin’s oldest golf tournament — the local version of the U.S. Open — are 2008 champ Lee Brannon and 2009 champ Joey Tinsley. Other noticeable names on the list include K.P. Smith, who played in the final pairing on Sunday last year and finished third, as well as Tye Waller, who finished fourth.
Henry Mabbett Jr., birdied three of the final four holes last year to force a sudden-death playoff which he won on the first hole against former Spalding High teammate Davin White to become the tournament’s eighth consecutive first-time winner. The duo — both signed to play NCAA Division I golf at the time, Mabbett at Georgia Southern and White at Georgia state — blazed a trail around the 6,439-yard, par-72 course built in 1932, firing matching 67-68—135’s to set the all-time championship record.
High drama has been the order of the day recently as sudden death playoffs have been needed the last two seasons and three times in the last four years to determine a champion in the 36-hole, stroke-play event.
The past eight champs include: Mabbett, 2010 champ Corey Dinkins (75-72—147), 2009 champ Joey Tinsley (70-74—144), 2008 champ Lee Brannon (76-70—146), 2007 champ Ken Pullin (67-73—140), 2006 champ Rock Hutcheson (69-73—142), 2005 champ Adam Rogers (71-73—144) and 2004 champ Josh Woods (73-74—147).
To sign up for this year’s tournament, stop by or call the pro shop at (770) 229-6615. Cost is $75 which includes, green and cart fees as well as lunch for both rounds. Deadline to register is 5 p.m., Wednesday Oct. 3.
The tournament dates this year were moved from August to October because the greens were being replanted during the summer months.