Minnesota Senior PGA Professional Championship

By Maggie Sutton




Bill Israelson of Vintage Golf Course had two nearly bogey-free rounds to win his sixth Minnesota Senior PGA Professional Championship on Wednesday, August 14 at Island View Golf Club in Waconia, Minnesota.

Israelson’s only bogey of the tournament came on the par 5 17th Hole in the final round. His comfort on the course comes from the style of the course itself.

“I had never played this course, so it’s a old style doglegs, pushed up greens, and a lot of elevation stuff, so it suits my game really well.” said Israelson. “At 6,500-6,600 yards, I’m still a really good player. There’s a lot of doglegs right but I can feed the ball better now than when I was younger so, I just felt really comfortable out there and its kind of the golf course I grew up on.” Israelson said of Island View.

Even a weather delay part-way through the first round didn’t bother Israelson. “It didn’t affect me at all. I actually drove my RV down here so I was camping in the parking lot, so I actually took about a 45 minute nap, and I actually missed the heavy rain…I had been playing pretty well up to then, a little better than I actually thought I would, and then just kind of carried that momentum today.”

When asked what he thought of today’s round, Israelson said his pairing helped his competition. “Really had a good ball striking round, and I hit all 18 greens, and Craig [Brischke] put some pressure on me at the start and then I got it going on the first part of the backside, kind of separated myself.”

Israelson will be one of the six PGA Members representing the Minnesota PGA at the 2019 Senior PGA Professional Championship presented by Cadillac to be played Oct. 3-6, 2019, at Omni Barton Creek Resort and Spa (Fazio Foothills and Coore Crenshaw courses) in Austin, Texas. Other Section members joining him are Craig Brischke, George Smith, Don Berry, Mike Barge, and Larry Norland, who earned the sixth spot by making a birdie in a one-hole playoff.

“I like playing, its fun always to come and see the guys here that you’ve known for 30, 40 years and competed against, so we all have our excuses.”