SARANAC INN - It was like 2011 all over again for golfers Chris Stevens and Bill Kloc.
On Sunday, Sept. 30 at Saranac Inn, the pair successfully defended their title in the 10th annual Eddie Yanchitis Sr. Memorial Golf Tournament by topping a field of some the area's finest golfers.
Stevens, the pro at Saranac Inn, and Kloc, of Clifton Park, matched their winning score from a year ago - a 9-under par 63 - to claim a one-stroke victory in the two-person scramble event that featured a dozen teams. Stevens and Kloc turned in a 32 on the front nine and a 31 on the back on their way tying their tournament record low score from 2011. They finished with eight birdies, one eagle and a single bogey to edge out the runner-up team of Brian Renisch and Chip Wheeler.
Saranac Inn pro Chris Stevens, left, and Bill Kloc are presented with the championship plaque by Ed Yanchitis following their one-shot victory Sunday.
Lou Reuter/Lake Placid News
"We ham and egged it pretty good," Kloc said. "We had a good partnership. When I didn't hit a good shot, Chris did and vice versa. We both putted well and we both drove the ball well."
Kloc plays at Saranac Inn quite a bit during the summer months, and said he often takes a boat to the course from his family's camp on Upper Saranac Lake. He joked that part of his inspiration to win the tournament this year came from Wheeler, a greenskeeper at the historic layout.
"Chris told me he's not going to get beat by an old man this year," Kloc said. "Talk like that certainly motivated me. We certainly weren't playing for second place."
"Any time I tee it up, I'm looking for a W," Stevens added. "I was a little surprised we matched our score from last year. I didn't think the scores were going to be quite as low playing in cold and rainy conditions. We had a great day. We'll be looking for the three-peat next year."
Renisch, a Lake Placid native who has competing as a golf pro in Texas, and Wheeler could have forced a playoff, had it not been for a 5-foot eagle putt they missed on the par-5, 18th hole.
Two more Lake Placid golfers, Corey Reid and Jim Patterson, who both work at the Whiteface Club, finished in third place with a 66.
The annual tournament raises scholarship funds for students attending Saranac Lake High School.