The largest field in the history of the Invitational Shootout were no match for the team of Ray Shinkle and Jeff Fernstrom on Saturday, June 8th at Maple Meadows Country Club. The duo set an Invitational Shootout scoring record of 65 and ran away from the competition to capture the 2002 Championship.
“I kept telling my partner Jeff that we’ve got to stay aggresive all day ” said Shootout champion Ray Shinkle, “with these scoring conditions and this large of a field, someone is going to go low.”
Neither Shinkle nor Fernstrom expected to lap the field of 56 golfers by four strokes. Said Fernstrom, “Ray was very adamant in making sure we continued to push for birdies throughout our round. We were the only team to birdie the first hole and we never stopped after that.”
The 2002 Senior Division champions were Victor Tocwish and Al Paszyna. Said Tocwish, while choking back tears, “Sometimes Al gets a little nervous in the big tournaments, but today he was terrific. He nailed knock-down 5-iron to a fade pin on the 17th hole that pretty much won us the tournament… for that I will always be grateful.”
Tocwish and Paszyna outlasted the Michigan-based team of Ken Sprague and Ray Azzolin by two strokes. “Illinois golf is a little different than it is in Michigan” said Ken Sprague. “But the element of competition stays the same, and I’m sure my partner Ray would say the same thing.”