McGinnis joins Senior Open qualifiers


CHEVY CHASE -- Mike McGinnis, head pro at Holly Hills Country Club and playing in the next-to-last of 51 threesomes, posted 73 to grab the final spot in U.S. Senior Open qualifying at the Columbia Country Club yesterday.

McGinnis, 56, made it for the second straight year by getting seven straight pars through the 17th hole, before finishing with a bogey on 18.

David Oakley, in his second round since prostate surgery four weeks ago, earned the medal with 34-37--71, 1-over par.

With five places available, Oakley and McGinnis were joined by Peter Jacobi (72) and Larry Ringer and Jack Vardaman (73). The championship will be June 29-July 2 at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda.

McGinnis, the oldest man to qualify for a PGA Tour event (the Kemper Open two weeks ago), and the oldest of the five to make it here, had an erratic round. He double-bogeyed the first and 10th holes, and had just two pars on the front nine.

But he followed his opening hole with four successive birdies, three on putts from inside 12 feet, and one "no-brainer" from 40 feet. He was even at the turn, 2-over after 10, then ran off seven straight pars.

Oakley, 50, "hit it as well as I can," in posting 34-37 against par of 35-35. He was 2-under through 14, then doubled 15 after he flew the green, and bogeyed 16.

Jacobi, 52, who got back Saturday night from a week at the Paris Air Show, "kept it in play," and clinched his spot with birdies at the 16th (five feet) and 17th (10 feet) greens.

Ringer, who turned 50 in April and was coming off 10th-place and runner-up finishes in the last two Senior Series events, rallied down the stretch with birdies on 14 and 17 on putts from inside of five feet.

The only deviations from par for Vardaman, 55, were one bogey and one double-bogey, as he came through with a good solid round.

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