CALLICOON What do you get when you mix 10 former champions, a host of father-son teams and some of the best golfers in the area together?
The 31st Annual Sullivan County Democrat Two-Man Better Ball Golf Tourney, of course.
With just four weeks left until tee time, the Democrat has only 10 spots left to fill.
“The excitement is really starting to build,” Fred Stabbert III, Democrat publisher and tourney sponsor, said. “I think this may be one of the most competitive tournaments ever.”
“But don’t I say that every year?” he laughed.
The Democrat will be held July 27, 28 and 29 at the Villa Roma Country Club in Callicoon and with only 10 opening left, Stabbert said he expects the tourney to be filled by the end of next week.
Two-time defending champs Sean Semenetz and Joe Winski will again try and become the first team ever to three-peat at the Democrat.
An extremely competitive team, Semenetz and Winski have four championships to their credit and Semenetz also won in ‘03 with Nick Yaun.
But winning a third straight certainly won’t be easy.
Eight-time Democrat champion Ken Cohen (‘84, ‘87, ‘92, ‘94, ’97, ‘99, ‘04, ‘05) has found a new partner, Sullivan West senior Drew Billard as he looks to win again in a fourth decade. Billard brings game, and knows the Villa Roma course inside and out.
Bill Phillips and Greg Semenetz (‘01, ‘02) narrowly missed winning their third Democrat title last year, losing on the first hole of sudden death to the younger Semenetz and Winski.
This team knows how to win and is especially comfortable under pressure at the Villa Roma course.
Bill Elliott, a winner in 2000, will again team up with his son, Richard, one of the top scholastic golfers in the mid-Hudson region. They certainly should be a team to watch.
Also back together again are Rich Schmidt and ‘86 champion Tom Drobysh, who could be a force if they’re on.
And speaking of ‘86, past Democrat champion Don Winters will play with 1998 champion Pat Murtaugh.
2000 champion Chris DuBois, one of only two players to compete in all 30 Democrat tourneys, will be back again, playing with partner Jay Shapiro.
Another team back in the fold after two near championships, is Maxx and Ben Kleiner.
The cousins are a strong duo which knows the Villa course well and should be there on Sunday.
John Meyer and Tom Roseo could also be in the hunt this year as well as the father-son duo of Newt and Justin Armstrong.
Sullivan County Democrat
Championship Flight History
’82 - Mark & Mitchell Etess
’83 - Mark & Mitchell Etess
’84 - Ken Cohen/Jim Grossinger
’85 - Walt/Ed Markowski
’86 - Tom Drobysh/Don Winters
’87 - Ken Cohen/Jack Jordan
’88 - Jack Jordan/David Solomon
’89 - Charles Johnston/ Terry Wolcott
’90 - Rad Yaun/Mike Schmidt
’91 - Walt Markowski/Tom Howe
’92 - Ken Cohen/Barry Winter
’93 - Kort Wheeler/ Robert Friedman
’94 - Ken Cohen/Mitchell Etess
’95 - Walter Herzog/Jerry Garber
’96 - Dave Philossoph/ Peter Rymer
’97 - Ken Cohen/Barry Winter
’98 - Paul Stock Jr./ Pat Murtagh
’99 - Ken Cohen/Barry Winter
’00 - Chris DuBois/ Bill Elliott
’01 - Gregg Semenetz Sr./Bill Phillips
’02 - Gregg Semenetz Sr./Bill Phillips
’03 - Sean Semenetz/Nick Yaun
’04 - Ken Cohen/Charles Johnston
‘05 - Ken Cohen/Barry Winter
‘06 - Sean Semenetz/Joe Winski
‘07 - Sean Semenetz/Joe Winski
‘08 - Josh Goldstein/Mike Culclasure
‘09 - Josh Goldstein/Mike Culclasure
‘10 - Sean Semenetz/Joe Winski
‘11 - Sean Semenetz/Joe Winski