Local golf: Anders Albertson’s Korn Ferry win may lead to PGA Tour return

Georgia Tech graduate Anders Albertson took a big step toward regaining status on the PGA Tour when he led wire-to-wire to win the Korn Ferry Tour’s Visit Knoxville Open. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)

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Georgia Tech graduate Anders Albertson took a big step toward regaining status on the PGA Tour when he led wire-to-wire to win the Korn Ferry Tour’s Visit Knoxville Open. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)

Georgia Tech graduate Anders Albertson took a big step toward regaining status on the PGA Tour when he led wire-to-wire to win the Korn Ferry Tour’s Visit Knoxville Open.

The win was Albertson’s first since 2018 and moved him up to 11th on the points list, where the top 25 earn their PGA Tour cards for the 2022-23 season. He shot rounds of 62-67-65-66 to finish at 20-under 260 and produced his second top-10 finish of the year.

“I felt like I’ve been playing pretty well this year but obviously haven’t had a result quite like this,” Albertson said.

Albertson credited longtime swing coach Jeff Paton and mental coach Ina Kim-Schaad for their support, as well as coach Mike Adams, who worked with him on producing a higher ball flight. He also thanked University of Tennessee coach Brennan Webb for allowing him to use the practice facilities and his former Yellow Jackets teammate Bo Andrews, now an assistant with the Volunteers, for being his caddie. And it was nice that his mom drove up from Atlanta to be there Sunday for the final round.

“When I won (the first time), I was by myself with my caddie,” Albertson said. “Just in that reason alone, I think it’s super nice to be here with people that I love and enjoy spending time with.”

Albertson graduated from Etowah High School and won the Byron Nelson Award while at Tech. He played the PGA Tour in 2019 before returning to the Korn Ferry Tour the next year.

Nate Gahman wins Georgia Mid-Am

Nate Gahman of Albany birdied the final hole to post a 12-under 204 and edge Chris Waters of Atlanta by one shot to win the 41st Georgia Mid-Amateur Championship at Coosa Country Club in Rome.

Gahman, who shot rounds of 74-64-66, trailed by three shots entering the final round but worked his way up to the top, thanks to eight birdies on the day. Gahman’s last 36 holes included 15 birdies and one eagle, and he had the low round of the final round.

Second-round leader Franco Castro of Smyrna finished in a tie for third with Joseph Kalbac of Savannah at 8 under. Jack Larkin Sr. of Atlanta, Stan Gann of Warner Robins and Rusty Mosley of Vidalia finished in a tie for fifth at 7 under.

Ross Johnson, the first Georgia Mid-Amateur champion and Coosa member, presented Gahman with the Dick Franklin Trophy on the same course Johnson won the first championship. Gahman, who played at Georgia Southwestern, is the first player from Albany to win the Georgia Mid-Amateur Championship. With the win, he is exempt into the Georgia Amateur Championship.

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The Georgia team tied for fourth at the Secretary's Cup. From left, James “Butch” Vincent, United States Army; Funmilayo “Funmi” Aranmolate, United States Air Force; Karen Cooper, United States Army; Tom Gilmore, United States Army, 2021 Georgia PGA HOPE Ambassador and Purple Heart recipient (Vietnam War); PGA professional Jason Kuiper, the director of instruction at Bobby Jones Golf Course.

Credit: Montana Pritchard, PGA of America

The Georgia team tied for fourth at the Secretary's Cup. From left, James “Butch” Vincent, United States Army; Funmilayo “Funmi” Aranmolate, United States Air Force; Karen Cooper, United States Army; Tom Gilmore, United States Army, 2021 Georgia PGA HOPE Ambassador and Purple Heart recipient (Vietnam War); PGA professional Jason Kuiper, the director of instruction at Bobby Jones Golf Course.

Credit: Montana Pritchard, PGA of America

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The Georgia team tied for fourth at the Secretary's Cup. From left, James “Butch” Vincent, United States Army; Funmilayo “Funmi” Aranmolate, United States Air Force; Karen Cooper, United States Army; Tom Gilmore, United States Army, 2021 Georgia PGA HOPE Ambassador and Purple Heart recipient (Vietnam War); PGA professional Jason Kuiper, the director of instruction at Bobby Jones Golf Course.

Credit: Montana Pritchard, PGA of America

Credit: Montana Pritchard, PGA of America

Georgia team ties for fourth at Secretary’s Cup

A Georgia team led by PGA professional Jason Kuiper, the director of instruction at Bobby Jones Golf Course in Atlanta, tied for fourth in the Secretary’s Cup, a nine-hole competition that features veterans who have participated in PGA HOPE. The event was held at The Club at Indian Springs in Broken Arrow, Okla., before the PGA Championship.

HOPE (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere) is a rehabilitative golf program for veterans designed to enhance their physical, mental, social and emotional well-being.

Veterans on the Georgia team were James “Butch” Vincent, U.S. Army; Funmilayo “Funmi” Aranmolate, U.S. Air Force; Karen Cooper, U.S. Army; and Tom Gilmore, U.S. Army, 2021 Georgia PGA HOPE Ambassador and Purple Heart recipient (Vietnam War).

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Carter Loflin hits his tee shot on the 10th hole during the semifinals at the 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball at Country Club of Birmingham (West and East Courses) in Birmingham, Ala., on May 18. (James Gilbert/USGA)

Credit: USGA Museum

Carter Loflin hits his tee shot on the 10th hole during the semifinals at the 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball at Country Club of Birmingham (West and East Courses) in Birmingham, Ala., on May 18. (James Gilbert/USGA)

Credit: USGA Museum

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Carter Loflin hits his tee shot on the 10th hole during the semifinals at the 2022 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball at Country Club of Birmingham (West and East Courses) in Birmingham, Ala., on May 18. (James Gilbert/USGA)

Credit: USGA Museum

Credit: USGA Museum

Carter Loflin reaches semifinals of U.S. Four-Ball

Duluth’s Carter Loflin and partner Wells Williams of West Point, Miss., reached the semifinal round of the U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship at the Country Club of Birmingham.

Loflin, who will play for the University of Georgia, and Williams, who will play for Vanderbilt, finished second in the stroke-play qualifier and won three matches before being eliminated 7 and 5 by eventual champions Chad Wilfong and Davis Womble of North Carolina in the semifinal round.

The Georgia team of Chad Branton of Cartersville and Kyle Hosick of Calhoun advanced to match play and lost in the round of 32.

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Trent Phillips led Georgia into the SEC Championship tournament at Sea Island. Phillips has six top-10s and one victory during the 2021-22 season.

Credit: Steve Colquitt

Trent Phillips led Georgia into the SEC Championship tournament at Sea Island. Phillips has six top-10s and one victory during the 2021-22 season.

Credit: Steve Colquitt

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Trent Phillips led Georgia into the SEC Championship tournament at Sea Island. Phillips has six top-10s and one victory during the 2021-22 season.

Credit: Steve Colquitt

Credit: Steve Colquitt

Trent Phillips a finalist for Haskins Award

Trent Phillips, a senior at the University of Georgia, is one of eight finalists for the Haskins Award, presented annually to the nation’s best college golfer.

The other finalists are Ludvig Aberg of Texas Tech, Sam Bennett of Texas A&M, Fred Biondi of Florida, Chris Gotterup of Oklahoma, Eugenio Lopez-Chacarra of Oklahoma State, R.J. Manke of Washington, Logan McAllister of Oklahoma and the Vanderbilt duo of Gordon Sargent and Cole Sherwood.