If everyone brought as much joy with them to a round of golf as Mike Lawrence does no one would ever have a bad day on the golf course, no matter what their score.
One of the Upstate’s top teaching professionals, who owns an impressive playing resume, is the newest addition to the South Carolina Golf Association Hall of Fame.
Lawrence, who is usually never short of words, is having trouble believing the state association has honored him for his outstanding career.
“I’ve just always gone about sharing what I love about the game with everyone,” he said. “I’ve enjoyed every part of my golf career and if I can pass that along to others I’m pretty happy,” said Lawrence.
Before helping to establish the TGM Teaching Academy, Lawrence was a club pro at several courses in the Upstate. He served as the head pro at Smithfields and The Cliffs to name just two.
Back in the days when every golf club had a pro who could play with a scorecard in their pocket, Lawrence captured three South Carolina Open championships against strong competition.
“I had some good tournaments and was fortunate to win a couple,” he recalled. “I enjoyed the competition and I am very proud of my wins in the Open,” he said.
Most lifetime club professionals rarely have the opportunity to play in a major championship.
Lawrence has competed in 5 Senior PGA Championships, 3 PGA Championships a US Open and US Senior Open. He also won qualifying tournaments to win his way into several PGA Tour events including the Heritage at Hilton Head.
As a 35 year PGA member Lawrence has also won a couple of handfuls of Carolinas tournaments including the Western North Carolina Open and several Pro-Pro titles with partners.
Lawrence found his place in the game as a club pro and instructor and places the 18 times he has qualified to play in the National Club Pro Championship as a career highlight.
The Clemson grad earned All-ACC honors while in college and won the prestigious Iron Duke Classic.
While Lawrence still enjoys competing, it is his instruction work with golfers that provides him the most satisfaction these days.
The Anderson resident keeps a regular instruction schedule at Boscobel, Smithfields, Southern Oaks and Brookstone. He has developed a teaching method explained on the tgmgolfacademy.com website.
“I’m really honored to be named to the Hall of Fame. It is something I never thought about or aspired to. I just went about doing what I always have done in golf. It is really awesome that people think I’m worthy of being part of the Hall of Fame,” concluded Lawrence.
Bluffton’s Kevin King will join Lawrence in the Class of 2020. The long time amateur has an impressive collection of accomplishments.
Some of his victories include the 1989 SCGA Amateur Championship, 1988 and 1998 SCGA Mid-Amateur Championships, nine-time Hilton Head Amateur Champion, multiple partner Championships, a seven time USGA Mid-Am and US Amateur contestant, 2019 USGA Senior Open qualifier, three-time representative of SC in the USGA’s Team Matches.
The 71st and 72nd members of the Hall of Fame will be inducted during Golf Day ceremonies on January 11, 2020 at Columbia Country Club.