Jackson’s Mike Raymond Wins 8th GAM Super Senior Championship

GRAND BLANC – Mike Raymond of Jackson won a final-group duel with Randy Lewis of Alma, shooting a closing 2-under 70 to a 71 by Lewis and winning the 8th GAM Super Senior Championship presented by Mercy Elite Sports at Atlas Valley Golf Club Tuesday.

  They started the final round tied at even-par 72 and they were tied going to No. 18 where a par won it for Raymond.

  “We were back and forth and the back nine turned into really good golf,” Raymond said. “We were swapping some birdies. It was fun and we were even coming down 18 and that 18 green is diabolical and it got Randy. He had a very challenging putt. I had the easier putt for sure.”

  Raymond won the Super Senior title (golfers ages 65-and-over) for the first time and said it felt good to have his name on the trophy with all the great names.

  “As old as we are, it’s still your peer group and you know, there are so many great champions in this field, a ton of guys who have won big, big events. Randy’s a USGA (2011 U.S. Mid-Amateur) champion. So we’re a little older and maybe not as sharp as we used to be, but it doesn’t mean we’re any less competitive. It means a lot to win one.”

  Raymond’s 2-under 142 total and the 143 by Lewis were the top scores by five shots. Jeff Knudson of Beverly Hills finished third with a closing 70 for 148 and Dan Hughes of Saginaw shot 72 for 149.

  A champion was also crowned in the Legends Division for golfers ages 70-and-over.

  Mike Fedewa of Canton, the 2007 GAM Senior Amateur Champion, topped another Canton golfer, Jerry Heiss, on the first hole of a sudden-death playoff with a bogey.

  They went the extra hole after Fedewa shot 75 for 154 and Heiss shot 76 to tie.

  Last year’s Legends Division winner George Dillon of Midland, who shot 72, and 2016 Super Senior winner John French of Bloomfield Hills, who shot 79, tied at 156. French was tagged the Grand Legend with the lowest score among golfers over age 75.

  “I’ve had 10 second-place finishes over the years in GAM tournaments, and this is the first year I played in the Legends (division) so I didn’t know what to expect, but I’m very, very happy,” Fedewa said. “I feel sorry for Jerry. We’ve all done that. I wish I made my putt there so he would have lost to a par.”

  Raymond, a Country Club of Jackson member who is still working in supply chain software sales, said going back-and-forth with Lewis in the same group helped him.

  “He makes very few mistakes and it makes you focus all the way along,” said the 2013 GAM Senior Match Play champion. “You can’t just think he will make mistakes coming in because you know, he’s just good. I stayed focused and played some good golf.”