Sterchi sinks $10,000 hole-in-one
Lebron Sterchi scored his first hole-in-one and earned $10,000 for doing so.
The former Hamilton County teacher, coach and principal, now a consultant for Silverdale Baptist Academy, aced No. 8 at Chatata Valley on Saturday during the Lee University Stanley Butler Shootout. He struck a 4-hybrid from 168 yards while playing with Mike Palmer, Walter Howard and Doug Stoney.
"I pulled out my phone and called my wife," Sterchi said in a Lee release. "I told her something had just happened and she allowed I might have been in a car wreck. I quickly assured her I was all right and I'd just won $10,000. She went crazy."
Sterchi said he will use the cash to take her on a trip and replace a 1997 Chevy Blazer.
U.S. Open qualifying
Local qualifying for the U.S. Open will take place today at Holston Hills in Knoxville. Area players at Holston Hills are Sam Bedwell, Andrew Black, Davis Bunn, Danny Gleeson, Hunter Green, Ramsey Kimbrough, Bryce Ledford, Caleb Roberson, Henrik Simonsen, Scott Stevens and Stuart Thomas. Former UTC golfer Derek Rende is the qualifier at Colonial Country Club in Cordova, Tenn.
SMI still open
Applications for the 77th annual Signal Mountain Invitational, to be held May 17-19, are available at the club. Due to the postponement of the Cleveland Invitational, the SMI will be the first event in the Chattanooga TPC series. The entry fee of $160 includes three rounds of golf a pairings party on Thursday and other perks.
The Cleveland Invitational, by the way, has been reset for July 20-21, according to Lamar Mills. He said applications likely won't reopen until June.
Drive, Chip, Putt
The Tennessee Golf Foundation has announced dates for its Drive, Chip and Putt junior skills challenge series with the championship to be held July 23 at Council Fire during the Choo-Choo Invitational.
The first two dates include clinics for kids and will be May 29 at Chatata Valley and June 5 at the First Tee of Chattanooga facility. Challenge-only events will be held June 26 at Valleybrook and July 8 at Signal Mountain. More information and sign-ups are at www.GETn2golf.org.
TGA Junior Tour
Registration for the Tennessee Golf Association Junior Tour is open for 15 one-day events in the Chattanooga Region as well as the two-day TaylorMade Championship set for June 13-14 at Bear Trace at Harrison Bay. More information and signups are available at www.TGAJuniorTour.com.
David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...