Former PGA-Tour professional Chris Smith went into the second round of the Indiana PGA Senior Open at 3-over-par, six shots behind the leader at the time, Alan Schulte, who was at 3-under-par for the tournament.
Smith made two birdies early in his second round on the par-5, 2nd and par-4, 4th and was able to fly under the radar and remain at two-over-par for the tournament until he made it to the par-4, 9th.
“I had a really good warm up this morning and hit a lot of good shots, so I was able to bring some of that play to the course this morning,” Smith said. “I made a birdie on 9 and then after that everything started happening.”
After the birdie on the par-4, 9th, Smith gained some momentum. Smith started the back nine with three birdies on holes 10, 11, and 12. At that point, Smith knew he had to be catching the leader.
“When I came around to hole 15, the leaders were on 11, so I hustled over to their hole to take a look at the leaderboard,” Smith said. “Schulte was at -4 at that time, and I was at -2, so I knew I had to get it going.”
From that moment on the par-4, 15th on, Smith’s putter was hot. Smith made a birdie on 15, a 12-foot putt on 16 for birdie, and a 15-foot putt on 17 for birdie. To cap off the day, Smith hit his last shot of the day on the par-4, 18th to about 18 inches to leave him a tap-in birdie putt to shoot an 8-under-par, 64 final round and finish at -5 for the tournament to win by one shot over Alan Schulte and Scott Pieri. This is Smith’s second time winning the tournament since his first in 2019.
“Indiana golf means so much to me,” Smith said. “I have been playing in these tournaments since I was about four-years-old, and I want to continue to make a mark in Indiana history in my competitive days that I have left.”