K.G. Watkins wins 2006 Bill McKenney city championship outright

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, August 2, 2006

NATCHEZ &8212; Through 36 holes and two days of flighted play among the best area golfers it was K.G. Watkins, who bested the field of 72 to win the 2006 Bill McKenney Memorial Tournament.

&8220;Well I won the senior title last year, and the city championship this year,&8221; Watkins said. &8220;Who knows maybe next year I&8217;ll put on a skirt and take on the ladies.&8221;

Watkins, consistent play off the tee and remarkable short game allowed him to score rounds of 67-69 and cruise his way into to his first ever city championship title.

Email newsletter signup

&8220;I credit my wedge,&8221; said Watkins. &8220;From anywhere within 60 yards I felt comfortable I was either going to knock it in the hole or get it close enough to one-putt.&8221;

Watkins did endure one uncomfortable moment. On Hole 11 he drove the ball into the sand and then chipped the ball over the green and across the road forcing him to take a drop back in the sand trap.

&8220;I had to take a six on that hole, but I got right back in it on the next two holes,&8221; Watkins said.

Watkins went on to birdie holes 12 and 13, which brought him back to even par. From there on out it was smooth sailing for the Natchez resident as he played at even par for the remaining five holes.

&8220;I knew that was all I had to do,&8221; Watkins said. &8220;Once I got up all I had to do was just stay ahead of everybody else.&8221;

Jay Leesley came into the final round one stroke back of Watkins, but was unable to close the gap, as he finished third.

&8220;I never got off to a good start,&8221; Leesley said. &8220;He (Watkins) got up and that was it. The way this course plays it is real hard to make up strokes.&8221;

Wesley Rogers finished three strokes behind Watkins with a two-day score of 139, and complemented Watkins skills around the green as the reason he won the tournamament.

&8220;He never gave any of us an opening other than hole 11, but he came right back with back-to-back birdies,&8221; Rogers said. &8220;It would have been difficult for anyone to have beat him the way he played all weekend.&8221;