Hembree defeats Walker for city golf championship

Mike Erwin

Greg Hembree won the 2016 City Golf Championship Sunday, defeating defending champion R.J. Walker in a two-day tournament at the historic Pawhuska Golf & Country Club.

Hembree earned top honors in the event’s Championship Flight, with Walker finishing runnerup. Chris Rumsey placed third on the leaderboard.

First place in the tourney’s A Flight went to Mike Jones of Sedan, Kan. The A Flight runnerup was Kyle Culver and Calvin Easley came in third.

Chris Reynolds was winner of the B Flight and Jason Reed placed second. Shawn Martin wound up third in the B Flight.

Last year’s championship — the first held since the local club re-opened in 2014 — was believed to have been the only one decided by stroke play rather than match-play rules. The nine-hole Pawhuska course had closed in 2009 and remained unused for five years before being restored by current owner John Long.

Constructed in 1922, the Pawhuska course was the fourth of more than 60 designed by legendary links architect Perry Maxwell. The former Oklahoma banker first designed his home course (Dornick Hills) in Ardmore, followed by Twin Hills in Oklahoma City and the Duncan Golf & Country Club.

After Maxwell designed the Pawhuska course, he moved on to other projects in Oklahoma — including Bartlesville’s Hillcrest Country Club (1926) and Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa (1935–36) — and 20 other states. Two well-known Maxwell creations from 1937 were the Prairie Dunes Country Club course in Hutchinson, Kan., and Hole No. 10 at Augusta (Ga.) National Golf Club.

A year ago, Walker shot a 71 on Saturday and a 72 Sunday for a winning score of 143. He defeated Ben Martin (79-68) by four strokes. Culver finished third with a 155, while Easley was the 2015 A Flight winner.