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Doug Hanzel of Savannah was selected as the GSGA's Tommy Barnes Award winner, along with five other golfers who earned Player of the Year honors.
Five other golfers earn 2012 GSGA Player of the Year honors
MARIETTA, Ga. – In a year that included many dominating performances, Doug Hanzel of Savannah was selected as the Tommy Barnes Award winner, signifying the Georgia State Golf Association’s overall player of the year for 2012. Hanzel was announced as the winner and honored at the GSGA’s Player of the Year Luncheon, held at Cherokee Town Club in Atlanta on January 19, 2013.
During his 2012 breakout season, Hanzel burst onto the senior competition scene in his first year of eligibility in impressive fashion on the state and national levels. It didn’t take long for Hanzel to distance himself from the rest of the field, finishing the year with 1,000 points, 565 more than the next-closest competitor in the Senior Men’s Player of the Year race.
Playing in the Georgia Senior Championship for the first time, Hanzel cruised to a 16-stroke victory at Reynolds Plantation-Great Waters in Eatonton in what is believed to be the largest margin of victory in any GSGA-sanctioned competition. Earlier in the year, the 55-year-old partnered with Bob Royak of Alpharetta to finish eighth at the Georgia Four-Ball Championship held at Harbor Club in Greensboro. At the Georgia Mid-Amateur Championship held at Berkeley Hills Country Club in Duluth, Hanzel finished sixth, also earning points towards his player of the year recognition.
Hanzel qualified for a number of national championships in 2012. For the second-straight year, he qualified for the U.S. Senior Open at Indianwood Golf and Country Club in Lake Orion, Mich., and finished with low amateur honors. Hanzel then advanced to the second round of the U.S. Amateur Championship at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colo., before falling to the eventual champion. He also reached match play at the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship at Conway Farms Golf Club in Lake Forest, Ill. Hanzel qualified for the USGA Senior Amateur Championship at Mountain Ridge Country Club in West Caldwell, N.J., where he reached the semifinals.
The award’s namesake, Tommy Barnes of Atlanta, was one of Georgia’s legendary amateur golfers. Among his many accomplishments, Barnes captured the 1941 Georgia Amateur Championship, won the 1947 and ’49 Southern Amateur titles, qualified for 16 consecutive U.S. Amateur Championships and played in the 1950 Masters Tournament. In 1989, at age 73, Barnes shot 62 to break Bobby Jones’ 67-year-old record at his home course, East Lake Golf Club. He also had a long history of service to the GSGA and other golf associations, and was a member of numerous Halls of Fame. Barnes passed away in 2007 at age 91.
In honor of this special gentleman, GSGA established the Tommy Barnes Award in 1983-84 to recognize its Men’s Player of the Year. Beginning in 1998, the Tommy Barnes Award was given to the annual overall player of the year.
Five other golfers received GSGA Player of the Year distinction and were honored during the luncheon. Players of the Year are annually awarded in six categories: Men, Women, Junior, Girls’, Senior Men and Senior Women.
Men’s Player of the Year
David Noll, Jr., Dalton
David Noll, Jr., of Dalton continued his decade of dominance in 2012, earning his record eighth overall, and sixth consecutive, GSGA Men’s Player of the Year title.
Noll won two GSGA events this past year, the Georgia Mid-Amateur Championship at Berkeley Hills Country Club in Duluth and the Atlanta Amateur Match Play Championship at Rivermont Golf and Country Club in Johns Creek. His Mid-Amateur victory was his second title and marked the eighth time in the last 11 years he has finished among the top six. The Match Play win was his fourth title in that competition.
At the Georgia Amateur Championship, held at Ansley Golf Club-Settindown Creek in Roswell, Noll finished runner-up, but finished just one stroke shy of defending his title and winning it for the third time. Noll also earned runner-up honors at the Georgia Four-Ball Championship at Harbor Club in Greensboro, where he paired with Mark Strickland of Woodstock. Noll also earned points towards his player of the year recognition for his top-10 finish at the Georgia Open at The Legends at Chateau Elan in Braselton on the Georgia PGA circuit.
Women’s Player of the Year
Laura Coble, Augusta
Laura Coble of Augusta, a 2013 Georgia Golf Hall of Fame inductee, enjoyed another great year on the links in Georgia and in national championships. Once again, she is awarded for her effort as she has been named the GSGA Women’s Player of the Year for the fourth-straight time and 14 of the last 15 years.
Coble won the Georgia Women’s Match Play Championship at Sunset Hills Country Club in Carrollton, an event she has won nine times in its 15-year history. She also captured her sixth title at the Georgia Women’s Amateur Championship, which is conducted by the Georgia Women’s Golf Association, at The Landings Club-Deer Creek in Savannah. She is now tied with fellow Hall of Famer Janet Olp for the second-most victories in that event.
On the national stage, Coble was once again a factor at the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship held at Briggs Ranch Golf Club in San Antonio, Texas. She advanced to the semifinals, marking the sixth time in the last eight years that she has made an appearance in the Round of 16 or better at that national championship.
Senior Women’s Player of the Year
Brenda Pictor, Marietta
In 2012, Brenda Pictor of Marietta continued to be a force in the Senior Women’s category. Since sharing the GSGA Senior Women’s Player of the Year title with Darlene Werhnyak of Lawrenceville in 2007, Pictor has claimed the award outright for the last five years.
This past year, Pictor collected her fourth-straight and fifth overall title at the GSGA Senior Women’s Championship played at Alpharetta Athletic Club-East in Milton. Earlier in the year she made it to the semifinals of the Georgia Women’s Match Play Championship at Sunset Hills Country Club in Carrollton. Pictor also earned points towards the player of the year award by placing fourth overall, including low-Senior honors, at the Georgia Women’s Amateur Championship conducted by the Georgia Women’s Golf Association at The Landings Club-Deer Creek in Savannah.
Pictor qualified for her fair share of national championships as well, including the USGA Senior Women’s Amateur Championship at Hershey Country Club in Hershey, Pa., where she advanced to the quarterfinals, marking the fourth-straight year she made it to at least the second round. She reached the second round of match play at the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship held at Briggs Ranch Golf Club in San Antonio, Texas, and also earned points by qualifying for the U.S. Women’s Amateur Championship at The Country Club in Cleveland, Ohio.
Junior Player of the Year
Andy Shim, Duluth
Over this past summer, Andy Shim of Duluth sprung onto the scene becoming a national star in junior golf and was named the GSGA Junior Player of the Year.
Not only did Shim win the Georgia Junior Championship by five strokes over the defending champion at Doublegate Country Club in Albany, he also captured the Georgia PGA Junior Championship title two weeks earlier at Athens Country Club. These pair of wins completed the rare state sweep in junior golf.
At the U.S. Junior Amateur Championship at The Golf Club of New England in Stratham, N.H., Shim made his way through the field before winning the 36-hole final match. Down five through 18 holes, Shim came back to defeat Jim Liu, a former champion from Smithtown, N.Y., 4 and 3. It was the largest comeback in Championship match history. Via the Junior Amateur title, Shim earned an exemption into the U.S. Amateur Championship at Cherry Hills Country Club in Cherry Hills Village, Colo., also earning him player of the year points.
Girls’ Player of the Year
Ashlan Ramsey, Milledgeville
Ashlan Ramsey of Milledgeville is the outright GSGA Girls’ Player of the Year for the first time in 2012, and second time overall after sharing the award with Mariah Stackhouse of Riverdale in 2011.
Ramsey continued to make a name for herself not only in Georgia, but on the national scene as well. She advanced to the final match of the U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship at Neshanic Valley Golf Course in Neshanic Station, N.J. Although she lost the match and finished with runner-up honors, Ramsey and her opponent combined for 18 birdies in the final match, just two shy of a record in any USGA championship. She was also the top Georgian in both the U.S. Girls’ Junior at Lake Merced Golf Club in Daly City, Calif., and the U.S. Women’s Amateur at The Country Club in Cleveland, Ohio, where she advanced to the second and third rounds of match play, respectively. Ramsey also earned player of the year points by winning the Georgia PGA Junior Championship at Athens Country Club.
Ramsey will graduate from John Milledge Academy in Milledgeville this spring and will play golf at Clemson University.
|Tommy Barnes Award History|
|1998 Bill Roberts, Pine Mountain|
|1999 Bill Ploeger, Columbus|
|2000 Laura Coble, Augusta|
|2001 Rick Cloninger Dacula|
|2002 Bill Ploeger, Columbus|
|2003 Brian Harman, Savannah|
|2004 Spencer Sappington, Alpharetta|
|2005 Laura Coble, Augusta|
|2006 Dave Womack, McDonough|
|2007 Mark Strickland, Woodstock|
|2008 David Noll, Jr., Dalton|
|2009 Dori Carter, Valdosta; Laura Coble, Augusta; Mariah Stackhouse, Riverdale|
|2010 Brenda Pictor, Marietta|
|2011 Brenda Pictor, Marietta|
|2012 Doug Hanzel, Savannah|
|2012 Players of the Year Final Standings|
|Top five and ties listed - click here for complete standings and criteria|
|Men's Player of the Year|
|David Noll, Jr., Dalton||800|
|Doug Hanzel, Savannah||400|
|Lee Knox, Augusta||350|
|Chris Waters, Athens||350|
|William Mitchell, Roswell||325|
|Women's Player of the Year|
|Laura Coble, Augusta||900|
|Amira Alexander, Alpharetta||550|
|Ashlan Ramsey, Milledgeville||550|
|Brenda Pictor, Marietta||550|
|Kathryn Fowler, Americus||400|
|Senior Player of the Year|
|Doug Hanzel, Savannah||1000|
|Don Marsh, Johns Creek||435|
|Walter Hope, Gainesville||275|
|Dick Van Leuvan, Roswell||195|
|Mel Mendenhall, Marietta||190|
|Senior Women's Player of the Year|
|Brenda Pictor, Marietta||900|
|Susan Rheney, Greensboro||350|
|Mary Helen McElreath, Augusta||300|
|Mary Riley, Perry||200|
|Cheryl Grigg, Sea Island||150|
|Jodie Shepard, Newnan||150|
|Darlene Werhnyak, Lawrenceville||150|
|Junior Player of the Year|
|Andy Shim, Duluth||675|
|Michael Pisciotta, Alpharetta||125|
|Greyson Sigg, Augusta||100|
|Emmanuel Kountakis, Martinez||75|
|Adam Wright, Marietta||75|
|Harry Lambert, Suwanee||75|
|Brandon Lee, Alpharetta||75|
|Christopher, Guglielmo, Cumming||75|
|Tye Waller, Griffin||75|
|Stanton Schorr, Columbus||75|
|Girls' Player of the Year|
|Ashlan Ramsey, Milledgeville||750|
|Rinko Mitsunaga, Roswell||350|
|Rachel Dai, Milton||325|
|Emily Kurey, Alpharetta||250|
|Jessica Haigwood, Roswell||250|