When you looked at the online-live scoring from the first round of the Spartanburg County Amateur championship you had to wonder if Nelson Dickson had taken a wrong turn on his way to play golf.
Dixon is the defending Greenville County amateur champion, a title he won at The Preserve at Verdae almost a year ago.
Friday, Dickson was in the field at Three Pines Country Club for the Spartanburg County championship.
Dickson lives in Simpsonville, but is a member of a Spartanburg club, making him eligible to play in either
or both amateurs.
“When I got here today I didn’t know if I would be able to play,” said Dickson’ “I entered a little late after
the field was full, so I was the sixth alternate a couple of days ago,” he said.
The former USC Upstate golfer spent part of his day waiting to see if he could play and the rest of the day
leading the championship.
Dickson loaded up his clubs and his work computer and got to Three Pines before the first tee time was scheduled at 7:30, just in case someone over slept or got caught in traffic.
He opened his computer and went to work while keeping an eye on the check in desk. He had moved up to be the second alternate by the morning of the tournament.
“I had a good morning. I got a lot of work done, answered a bunch of emails, sent out a few emails nd proposals, so it was productive,”said the employee benefits manager said.
After waiting for almost five hours, finally someone missed their tee time. Dickson was in the
tournament with a 12:10 tee time and not much time to get ready.
“I feel bad for the guy who got sick, but I was glad I got a spot. I had just enough time to hit a couple of
drivers and three or four irons on the range and then was on the tee, happy to be able to play,” he said.
Dixon parred his first hole and on the second hole, a par-5, the defending Greenville County champ used a gap wedge to lift his 116 yard second shot towards the hole.
He watched it disappear into the cup for an eagle 2 and the early lead.
“When I was warming up I really didn’t have any expectations, I was just glad I could play in the tournament,” he said.
Dickson had or shared the lead for the rest of the round. He missed a 12 foot eagle putt on the 18th hole or he would have had the first round lead alone.
Former Wofford golfer Dustin Adair matched Dickson’s 7-under par 65 to share the lead at the end of the
Dickson’s wedge game was solid and leapt him in the lead until late in the first round.
Adair’s round was impressive. After an average start, shooting a 2-under par on the front.
On the back nine, Adair carded five more birdies to shoot a 31 and a first round 65 to tie Dickson for the
To go through everything Dickson did to get into the tournament, the reigning Greenville County champion must have a very good reason.
“I hate it, but I will not be able to defend in Greenville. I have a conflict and I really wanted to play in a county championship and even if I can’t play in Greenville, I’m glad I am playing in Spartanburg,” said the co-leader.
Since it is just the first round and Dickson is tid for the lead with 36 holes to go, the Greenville County champ ia third of the way to joining an elite two-some.
If, and it is a big if, Dickson could pull off the win he would be only the third golfer in the 50 pl;us year history of the Greenville and Spartanburg Amateurs to win each county’s amateur.
Only Tommy Biershenk, Sr. and Mike Gravley have been able to accomplish the Upstate twin-win.
Presbyterian College golfer Trey Howard is in third place after shooting a 5-under par 66.
Three time champion Kevin Roberts is in a fourth place tie with former County Junior champion Barrett
Josey at 4-under par 68.
Three golfers including defending champion Trevor Phillips are tied for sixth place at 2-under par while 8
golfers are tied for ninth at 1-under par.
First round Spartanburg County Amateur scores https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/8302868605138160375
Categories: Upstate Amateur Golf
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