The Woodward News

Local News

July 2, 2014

Walcher to compete in US Senior Open

Woodward, Okla. — When 156 Senior professional and amateur golfers take on the Oak Tree National Golf Course in Edmond July 10-13, Woodward native Rocky Walcher will be among them.

Walcher, a former PGA Tour golfer, qualified for the tournament through a sectional event recently in Aledo, Texas.

Walcher shot a 68 at the Split Rail Golf Club in Aledo to earn his spot in the field.

Oak Tree National isn't an unfamiliar course to Walcher. In fact, he's a member.

"I have played a lot out there over a 15 to 20 year period, so hopefully I'll have a homecourt advantage," Walcher said.

Walcher retired from tour golf in 2004, but had an eye on trying for the Senior Open field when it was announced Oak Tree would host the event.

"I really wanted to play in it," Walcher said. "Part of the reason is that I was there in the 1984 US Amateur and playing in this tournament was something I wanted to do."

Walcher isn't a stranger to big events. He was on the Nike and Nationwide (now web.com) Tour for a number of years and played on the PGA Tour in 1994 and 2001. He qualified for the US Open in 1991 and 1998, making the cut in 1998.

He is also a two-time winner of the Oklahoma Open in 2004 and 2007 and was inducted into the Southwestern Oklahoma State University Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006. At Southwestern he won the NAIA District 9 championship and qualified for the NAIA National Tournament.

Now he's going to be back among some of the world's top golfers.

"I just kind of want to see what I'm about," he said. "I haven't played a tour event in 10 years so I don't know how I will react.

"I will just rely on my course knowledge maybe and get physically ready to go. It ought to be interesting."

Official practice rounds start on Monday, July 7, but Walcher figures to get in plenty of work before that as he prepares for the tournament

"I will try to get in 4 or 5 practice rounds before the week starts so hopefully I'll be ready," he said.

The tournament is 72 holes with a cut after the second round.

Oak Tree National has also hosted its share of major events, including the 1984 US Amateur, the 1988 PGA Championship and the 2006 Senior PGA.

The Pete Dye designed course will play at 7,219 yards with a par 71.

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