Golf Notebook: Carolinas PGA suspends playing privileges of golfer accused of Heritage shoe theft

May 13, 2010 

Three-time Carolinas Open winner Scott Medlin of Hamlet, N.C., did not participate in the 86th Horry County State Bank Carolinas Open this past week at the Surf Golf and Beach Club, and he won't be participating in any other Carolinas PGA events for the foreseeable future.

Medlin won the CPGA's qualifier to get into the field for the PGA Tour's $5.7 million Verizon Heritage held last month at Harbour Town Golf Links. After missing the cut he was cited for petit larceny and is accused of stealing property from the lockers of various professional golfers.

CPGA executive director Ron Schmid said that Medlin's playing privileges are suspended pending the results of a court decision. It's not believed that Medlin is currently employed by a PGA-affiliated course in the Carolinas.

"We consider playing in the Carolinas to be a privilege," Schmid said.

Medlin's court hearing is set for 9 a.m. May 28 at the Municipal Court on Hilton Head Island.

Club professionals who are members of the Carolinas PGA have opportunities to play in PGA Tour events through an agreement with the PGA of America and PGA Tour.

The winner of the CPGA Section Championship gets to choose between the next season's Quail Hollow Championship in Charlotte, N.C., in late April or the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, N.C., in August. The CPGA Player of the Year gets the other tournament, and there is a qualifier for CPGA Class A pros to get into the Heritage tournament. Medlin won that qualifier in March.

"The bad thing is we only have one qualifier in the tournament, and it's like a team," Schmid said. "If one person does something it can cast a shadow on the entire team."


After a second round 70 on Wednesday and a two-day total of five-under-par 139, Bluffton's Bill Palmer holds a four-stroke lead over three other players in the South Carolina Golf Association's Senior Championship at the Oldfield Club in Okatie.

Palmer, the 2007 Senior Champion, had five birdies during his round to gain the four shot advantage heading into today's final round. He finished strong, making birdies on the 17th and 18th holes after bogeying the par-three 16th.

Tied for second at 143 are Greer's Mike Gravley, Bluffton's William Fuller and Seneca's Jim Van Ootegham.

The field consists of 116 players over the age of 55 and was cut to the low 60 and ties after the first two days of play.

Other local golfers near the top of the leaderboard are Hilton Head Island's Kevin Arnold (149), Bluffton's Dave Hambly (150), Beaufort's Thad Vincent (150), Hilton Head's Bob Collar (150), Okatie's Chris Morris (151) and Bluffton's Ron Sabatini (151).

The Senior Championship is one of 19 major championships conducted by the South Carolina Golf Association.


The Country Club of Hilton Head captured its second consecutive men's interclub team title on March 31. Long Cove Club was second, Moss Creek was third and Sea Pines Country Club finished fourth in the three-month competition between Hilton Head Island and Bluffton golf clubs.

Other teams were Port Royal, Hampton Hall, Hampton Pointe, Palmetto Dunes, Dolphin Head and Arthur Hills.

Each team competed in 10 matches in head-to-head match play. The Country Club of Hilton Head had the most points at the conclusion of the matches.

Members of the team were Don Bainbridge, Bill Mackey, John Carter, Jim Malcolm, Steve Clark, Bill McCourt, Jerry Cutrer, Nathan Mitchell, Jim Donham, Leo Roell, Mike Gilroy, Dave Rounds, Colin Hawkins, John Rychak, Dwight Hunting, Ed Sessler, Tom Hyde, Bill Smith, Bill Junga

, Hugh Terreri, Mike Kapitula, Tom Vater, Earl Keese, Bob vonBremen, Dave Lunka, Basil Walker and John Winnestaffer.


Peter Orrell has been named chief executive officer for the Junior Golf Corporation, the operating entity for the Hank Haney International Junior Golf Academy, the International Junior Golf Tour and Heritage Academy.

Orrell joins the Junior Golf Corporation after serving in a number of executive and strategic roles for American Express Company. He served on the Board of Directors of Amex Bank of Canada and was a member of Amex's international leadership team. Most recently, he was a principal of Summit Consulting Solutions, where he provided consulting services to mid-cap companies in the service industry.

"Junior Golf Corporation has enormous potential and I look forward to leading our team to unprecedented levels of global success," Orrell said in a release. "The opportunities for growth within the United States and key international markets are an exciting challenge. I am very excited and enthusiastic about our brand and our association with Hank Haney.We are well positioned for exceptional success."

Haney joined the International Junior Golf Academy in 2007 as director of instruction. In 2008, his name was added to the organization's brand.

Currently, the Hank Haney IJGA has students from 28 countries around the world.

"I am very pleased to welcome Peter as CEO of Junior Golf Corporation," Haney said in a release. "I know he has a strong passion to help our students reach their full potential. His wealth of experience with Fortune 500 and other top corporations will help to elevate our organization as the No. 1 brand in junior golf."

Junior Golf Corporation is owned by The Riverside Company, a global private equity firm. Orrell will assume his position with Junior Golf Corporation on Monday.


The Hank Haney International Junior Golf Academy and the International Junior Golf Tour recently announced a continued partnership with BMW of North America Southern Region.

As part of the agreement, BMW will be designated as the "Official Vehicle of Hank Haney IJGA." In addition, BMW will serve as presenting sponsor of the IJGT's 2010 Tournament of Champions, set for May 27-31 at Grand Cypress Resort in Orlando.

BMW will also be an exclusive sponsor of the IJGT's Team USA in their two international events this summer, the North American Cup and the Euro Cup. IJGT Team USA is comprised of the top 14 male and female junior golfers who competed on the IJGT during the previous season. The North American Cup is set for July 5-8 at May River Golf Course in Bluffton.

"I am excited to continue our strong relationship with BMW Southern Region," Haney said in a release. "Last November, they added a significant value to the second annual Hank Haney Invitational held at Sea Pines Resort. Our partnership encompasses their involvement in three of our most prestigious junior golf events -- the Tournament of Champions, North American Cup and Euro Cup. Additionally, we are thrilled about their partnership with the Hank Haney IJGA."


Several local golfers qualified for the South Carolina Junior Championship on Saturday at Wyboo Golf Club in Manning. The top 69 golfers in the field of 115 earned a spot in the tournament, set for June 8-10 at Fort Jackson Golf Club.

Beaufort's J.D. Lehman did the best with a 78, finishing four strokes behind winner Luke Coates of Florence.

Hilton Head Island qualifiers were Phillip North with a 79, Kyle Eichenbacher with an 80 and Tyler Williams with an 80.

Bluffton qualifiers were Wesley Long at 80 and Tim Godshalk at 82.

The presenting sponsor of the SCGA Junior Championship is the Heritage Classic Foundation, which is also general sponsor of the Heritage, the Junior Heritage and the Players Amateur.


Bluffton's Kenny Coakley finished tied for sixth place in the eGolf Professional Tour's Cowans Ford Open over the weekend at Cowans Ford Country Club in Denver, N.C.

Coakley finished with a four-round score of 271 to finish six strokes behind winner Clint Jensen of Jupiter, Fla., who earned a spot in next week's BMW Charity Pro-Am on the Nationwide Tour.

Bluffton's Joel Hendry and Hilton Head Island's Chris Epperson tied for 63rd place with a 282.


Hilton Head Island amateur Ross Kronberg tied for 19th place in the Carolinas PGA Horry County State Bank Carolinas Open on May 6 at the Surf Golf and Beach Club in North Myrtle Beach. Kronberg fired a three-round total of 213, finishing 11 strokes behind winner Ivan Schronce of Wilmington, N.C.

Hilton Head's Alex Treuel tied for 39th with a 218. Hilton Head's Keith Bach was 59th with a 229.

Alan Blondin of The (Myrtle Beach) Sun News contributed to this report

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