By Grantland Rice, II
Memphis, Tennessee-Despite what he termed erratic golf for most of the 72 holes, Atlanta's Tim Simpson played steady enough to win the 70th Southern Golf Association championship over the tough Colonial Country Club course.
It was the second time in three years for an Atlanta swinger to annex the Southern as Danny Yates had captured the 1974 title.
Simpson started the final round with a three-shot lead, quickly lost two shots of that on the first hole, then had to make a pressure two footer on the 72nd hole to nail down the crown.
Simpson went to the last hole with a seemingly safe two-shot lead. He slammed his approach shot 10 feet from the hole and it looked as if it would be easy.
However, Chip Beck, University of Georgia teammate of Simpson, knocked in a 12-foot birdie on the 72nd and suddenly Simpson's cinch looked shaky. He knocked his first putt two feet past, but then got it in for the title.
Simpson's rounds were 71-70-69-74 for a 284 total against Beck's four rounds of 70-72-71-72 for 285.
There really wasn't much suspense the last round as the other contenders fell by the wayside early.
College golfers, as expected, dominated the event. Behind the two Georgia University aces came Mitch Adcock, Mississippi State leader, and LSU'S Frank Gusmus at 287.
Gusmus, the home town favorite, was ruined by a 76 in the third round. He won medalist honors with a fine start of 69-70 for a 139 total and five under par.
First round leader Buddy Gardner, Auburn University, had opened with a blazing 66 but posted a second round 74 to lose medalist honors to Gusmus.
North Carolina again won the Bob Jones team title with a four-man total of 572 for 36 holes. The winning team was composed of Vance Haefner, Cary, 141; Chip Beck, Fayetteville, 142; Bill Harvey, Jamestown, 143, and Bob Bynam, Raleigh, 146.
Texas was runner-up in the team competition with a 576 total.
Carolina's victory was its third straight and 10 different players have won the cherished Jones plaques.
It took a score of 151 or better, seven over par, to make the 36-hole cut, and several outstanding players failed to stay around for the final 36, including the then current U. S. Amateur champion, Fred Ridley.
Behind the first four there was a three-way tie for fifth at 288 between Buddy Alexander, St. Petersburg, Fla.; Joe Hager, Dallas, and Haefner.
|Lance Ten Broeck||74-72-75-77-298|
|Harlan Fly, Jr||76-75-74-74-299|
|Jim Adams||No card|
|Randolph Sonnier||No card|