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Arnaud takes Ladies Pro-Am by 1 shot

Published 8/8/2012 in Pro-Am

By BRETT MARSHALL

bmarshall@gctelegram.com

Day 2 of the Southwest Kansas Pro-Am provided a new venue and new winners as 13 teams competed Tuesday in the Ladies Pro-Am at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course.

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Becky Malewitz/Telegram Jennie Watkins, Guymon, Okla. putts the ball at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course during the Ladies Pro-Am event of the Southwest Kansas Pro-Am Tuesday morning.

Becky Malewitz/Telegram Jennie Watkins, Guymon, Okla. putts the ball at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course during the Ladies Pro-Am event of the Southwest Kansas Pro-Am Tuesday morning.

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Becky Malewitz/Telegram Tonya Colvin, Liberal, lines up her putt Tuesday at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course during the Ladies Pro-Am, part of the Southwest Kansas Pro-Am.

Becky Malewitz/Telegram Tonya Colvin, Liberal, lines up her putt Tuesday at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course during the Ladies Pro-Am, part of the Southwest Kansas Pro-Am.

After Monday's Pioneer Electric Pro-Am at Ulysses' Bentwood Golf Course where Jeff Howard's 66 captured low pro honors, it was Michael Arnaud's turn to take the top prize of $500 for the professionals with a 3-under-par 69.

That left the Baton Rouge, La., golfer one shot in front of Cole Howard of Fort Worth, Texas, and two in front of Monday's winner in Ulysses, Jeff Howard. Matthew Henson of Austin, Texas, placed fourth with an even-par 72. Cole Howard earned $400 for his runner-up finish, while Howard and Henson pocketed $300 and $200, respectively.

Arnaud, a 30-year-old native Texan, is making his first appearance at the Pro-Am, and Tuesday's round at the Dunes was his first time to play the layout. He has one win and five top-10 finishes on the Adams Tour this season, and has pocketed nearly $25,000 in prize money.

"It's a good course for me," Arnaud said after his round. "I had a pretty good day. I drove the ball well and if you do that here, you're giving yourself shorter irons into the greens. If you want to be aggressive you can. I'm pretty confident right now with my driver, and I got myself in good spots."

Arnaud and his team began their play on the seventh hole, and it took the No. 3 money winner on this year's Adams Golf Pro Tour Series money list six holes before making a birdie, when he knocked in a putt on the par-3, 198-yard, 12th. He followed it with another birdie on the short, par-5, 13th. Bogeys at the par-5 16th and par-3 17th stalled his round, but he finished off the back nine with a birdie on the 18th.

He would go on to make birdies on the par-3 fourth and par-5 fifth to complete his birdie barrage.

"I was able to be pretty confident with my lines and where to hit it," Arnaud said. "I had a great group of ladies to play with. We had a great time, a lot of fun out there."

Arnaud quickly left the Dunes and headed to The Golf Club at Southwind, where the 72-hole Pro-Am was to begin today. He was trying to get in a quick practice round at the other course that he was seeing for the first time.

"It's a little the same, plenty of places for me to hit the driver, making the course play just a little shorter," Arnaud said. "I'm excited to see how things go and today's round is a confidence boost."

The amateur team of Jill Durst, Michel Knoll and Tracy Johnson, playing with Arnaud, garnered the top spot for the women's event, as 13 teams competed in the fifth year of an event sponsored this year by Cattle Empire, LLC. That group shot a 7-under-par 65.

"It's always different playing with a different pro," Johnson, a vice president of human resources at Golden Plains Credit Union said. "I think we all just had a lot of fun today."

For Durst, director of nutrition services at USD 457, it was an opportunity to play a full 18 holes in the early part of the day and have a little break from the demands of her job that will take on new proportions with the opening of the new Garden City High School.

"Definitely a nice break from getting ready for the new cafeteria," Durst said. "The food was exceptional today, too. We always look forward to that."

The pros and amateurs were feted to a buffet dinner prepared by the staff from Samy's Spirits and Steakhouse.

"Yep, the food and everything after is really like icing on the cake," Johnson said with a smile.

For Knoll, golfing today was a brief respite from her full-time job of operating Knoll Crop Protection, a crop insurance company that has seen itself busier than normal with the drought that has beset southwest Kansas.

"Today, we just focused on the golf and everybody contributed to the score," Knoll said. "I think we're all about the same level of golfers, and we just all seemed to do a nice job of helping out. That's what makes this so much fun."

Durst and Knoll have played in three of the five Ladies Pro-Ams, and all three of the women said playing and contributing to a good cause (the Newborn Intensive Care Unit) at St. Catherine Hospital was the primary reason for their participation.

"We normally play in the evening league and get to play just nine holes," Knoll said. "It was really fun to play with our pro. He was laid back, helpful and we just had a great time."

First round action for the 72-hole Pro-Am was to begin today at 7:30 a.m. at The Golf Club at Southwind. The pros only will be playing today before moving to Buffalo Dunes for Thursday's second round. The field will be cut for Friday and Saturday's final two rounds, where the pros are joined by amateur teams.

All proceeds from the tournament go toward the Newborn Intensive Care Unit at St. Catherine Hospital.

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Southwest Kansas Pro-Am

Ladies Pro-Am

Tuesday

at Buffalo Dunes Golf Course

Par 72

Professional Results

69--Michael Arnaud, Baton Rouge, La., $500.

70--Cole Howard, Fort Worth, Texas, $400.

71--Jeff Howard, Plano, Texas, $300.

72--Matthew Henson, Austin, Texas, $200.

73--Stetson McMillan, Hideaway, Texas; Doug Quinones, Medford, Ore., $50 each.

74--Jason Eslinger, Midland, Texas; Dylan Davis, Portland, Texas; Justin McDaniel, San Antonio, Texas; Stephen Hollingsworth, Natchez, Miss.; David Petry, San Antonio, Texas.

75--Jared Vela, Pasadena, Texas.

76--Walker Frey, Garden City.

Amateur Team Results

65--Jill Durst, Michel Knoll, Tracy Johnson.

66--Pam Jones, Jackie McCauley, Jaley McCauley.

68--Mary Lee, Jill Wessels, Tammy Johnson; Amanda Hawkins, Jenna Shook, Wendy Vollertsen; Molly Belt, Stephanie Weeast, Amanda Fulton; Julie Vines, Donna Gerstner, Robin Valenzuela; Tanya Colvin, Mindi Ormiston, Jennie Watkins.

69--Neely Wasinger, Christie Klotz, Jamie Warner; Corinne Fowler, Aubree Summers, Kelsey Kreutzer; Sandy Rogers, Nancy Farmer, Kathy Coles.

70--Melissa Leiker, Deann Gillen, Janet Smaltz.

71--Trista Brown, Jennifer Anderson, Lona DuVall.

72--Mel Patterson, Dee Longoria, Michelle Rash.

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