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Francis Marion University golfer Taylor Banks will be back to defend his title when the 36-hole Lancaster Golf Club championship is held this weekend.
Play opens Saturday morning and continues to Sunday afternoon.
A year ago, Banks, the former Buford High School and University of South Carolina Lancaster star golfer, shot a 75 over the final 18 holes for a three-over 147 to edge Lancaster dentist Matthew Hubis, who carded a 148 (73-75).
Banks began the final day a shot down to former champion Chris Johnson, who notched a one-under 71 on the opening day before fading at the finish.
Hubis and Gene Funderburk, a two-time club champion, were tied at 73 after the opening 18 holes the first day.
Johnson, who finished with 152 after an 81 Sunday, held a shot lead going to the final nine holes.
Banks made his charge over the final nine holes for the comeback win.
“I’d say Taylor is the favorite since he’s the defending club champion,” said LGC pro Phil Small. “He’s played golf all summer long and knows the course real well.
“I think he’s the pick going in, but he will have his share of competition this weekend.”
Hubis, the 2010 runner-up, is in the 13-man field along with Johnson.
“You have Skip Small who is always in the mix for the title along with Dalton Bradley, Mike ‘Red Man’ Kennington and Garrett Hammond,” Small said. “Any golfer in that 13-player championship field could post the win. I think it will be that competitive. I look for it to come down to the final holes.”
Small noted the keys.
“I think you’re going to have to be patient because the greens aren’t playing real fast due to the recent heat wave,” Small said. “I think another key is just being steady and consistent in your play and stay away from the big numbers. Keep it in the fairway and keep your numbers as low as possible.”
Players in the championship flight will play from the regular tees Saturday and move to the championship tees for Sunday.
The tournament also includes a seniors flight, golfers 50 and over who will play from the white tees, and a super seniors, golfers 65 and over who will play from the gold tees.
The seniors field has 10 players, with nine in the super senior field.
“We feel we have some good competition in this field,” Small said. “There are some outstanding senior golfers competing in these flights and I look for the play to also be good this weekend.”
Mike Roddey won the 2010 senior flight championship with a 147 (72-75), while Hazel Barnes was second with a 153, 76-77.
Roger Hayes captured the super seniors title with a 150, 73-77. George Flanders followed with a 155 (78-77).
Lancaster golfer Jimmy Boswell posted a hole-in-one on No. 7, the island hole, at the LGC on Aug. 5.
Boswell used a nine-iron to notch his third career hole-in-one which was witnessed by Mark Logan, Jimmy Mathis and George O’Neill.