Southwood Golf Club Hosts Florida Open Qualifier Wednesday

Posted at 11:44 PM, Jul 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-06 23:44:00-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) - For 69 years, amateur and professional golfers alike have played in the Florida Open, a seemingly State Tournament for golfers. To get to the Open, you have to get through qualifying. Southwood Golf Club in Tallahassee is one of sixteen qualifying sites across the state and Wednesday's qualifier didn't disappoint.

Those looking to make the Open had one round to go low, with five earning bids. Three golfers punched their ticket after eighteen holes, but a three man play-off hit the course for the final two spots. 

Tallahassee's Robert Bechtol, Thomas University head coach Peter Ireland and Mark Connelly involved in that play-off, which started on the par five first. Bechtol and Ireland parred the hole, while Connelly bogeyed, ending the play-off after one hole.

"I haven't played competitive golf in close to four years," said Ireland, who is making his first trip to the Florida Open. "This is the first tournament I've played in a long, long time and I'm really excited to go down to Orlando and play Interlachen and see what the golf course is like and just be around good players."

"I hope to go down and represent Southwood and Tallahassee and do well," said Bechtol. "I've played in a couple of these before and haven't made the cut yet, just missed by a couple shots. Hopefully we can make tge cut and play well on the weekend."

The Florida Open starts July 15th.