ELIZABETHTON, Tenn. (WJHL) – 34-year-old Nick Cohen had not won a single golf tournament since his junior year of high school, golfing at Sullivan South High School. He made a grand return to the top state 18 years later.
The former Rebels golfer won the William B. Greene Jr. East Tennessee Amateur in a sudden-death playoff with Blake Howard, as they both tied at the top of the leaderboard at -7 under par after 18 holes. Howard is a former Milligan golfer and NAIA All-American.
Cohen hoped to birdie the replayed-18th hole with a picture-perfect 2nd shot that landed on the green within feet of the pin. Howard’s 2nd shot landed in the bunker but a stellar shot out of the sand nearly dropped in the cup itself to possibly birdie before Cohen could even attempt his birdie putt. But it rolled just a couple feet wide and made his par putt while Cohen sank his birdie putt for the win.
Howard hovered around the top of the leaderboard all weekend by shooting a 69 on Friday and 70 on Saturday, and shot a 70 to put himself in a tie for the lead. Cohen shot a 74 on Friday and a 70 on Saturday to ender Day 3 eight shots back of the lead, but shot an impressive 65 to get back in it.
Beardon Wear finished in a tie for 3rd place with UT-Martin golfer Bryson Morrell, both at -6 under par. Jackson Skeen, the former Science Hill golfer who played at Tennessee and then transferred to Tennessee Tech, finished 5th with a -5 under par, shooting under par on all three days with scores of 70-70-71.
The Championship Division provided a ton of excitement, but not so much in the Senior Championship with Mike Poe winning the tournament for the 9th time, shooting 69-70-71 for a total of 210 which is only one back of the Championship Division top score of 209 by Cohen and Howard. Poe is also the head boys basketball coach at Volunteer High School.
Check out highlights of the sudden-death playoff in the clip above!