2018 IGA Player of the Year announced – Men’s
New year, same story.
After knocking on the door several times, including several top-ten finishes in the IGA Player of the Year race, Johnston’s J.D. Anderson (above) broke through last year for his first player of the year award. With another consistent and strong year Anderson added a second title to his résumé in 2018.
Anderson was low amateur at the 69th Herman Sani Tournament, won the 33rd Iowa Mid-Amateur Championship and Briarwood Amateur and was medalist at the U.S. Mid-Amateur Qualifier. Anderson also was a semi-finalist at the 30th IGA Match Play Championship and runner-up at the Carroll Amateur.
Two-time IGA Player of the Year, Jon Brown, of Adel, finished in second place in this year’s race. Brown, who played a mix of open and senior division this year, captured the 30th IGA Match Play Championship and was runner-up at the Northwest Amateur and North Iowa Amateur. Brown added a pair of T3rd finishes in 2018 at the 116th Iowa Amateur and Iowa Masters.
Rounding out the top five included Norwalk’s Dennis Bull (3rd), Des Moines’ Willis Gaer (4th) and Des Moines’ Tripp Kinney (5th).
Joe Palmer (above), of West Des Moines, won the 2018 Senior Player of the Year. But it wasn’t easy.
After a summer of back and forth in the standings that included several players, Palmer earned his way to the top of the list with wins at the IGA Senior Match Play Championship, 40th Iowa Senior Amateur Championship, 69th Herman Sani Tournament (Senior Division) and the 23rd IGA Four-Ball Championship (with partner Terry Cook). Palmer was medalist at U.S. Senior Amateur Sectional Qualifying and made it to the Round of 32 at that championship. Palmer was a U.S. Mid-Amateur Qualifier, was low amateur (Senior Division) at the Iowa Open and finished runner-up at the North Iowa Amateur (Senior Division).
Adel’s Jon Brown finished just behind Palmer in the Player of the Year race. Brown was able to earn bonus points for his win at the 30th IGA Match Play to go along with his Senior Division victories at the Northwest Amateur and The Classic (Elmwood CC). Brown also finished runner-up at the 40th Iowa Senior Amateur Championship and tied for third place overall at the 116th Iowa Amateur and Iowa Masters (Open Division).
While he did not win a player of the year award, pulling off the “double runner-up” in both the open and senior divisions shows just how good of a year Brown had.
Urbandale’s Ron Peterson (3rd), Norwalk’s Mike McCoy (4th) and West Des Moines’ Gene Elliott (5th) rounded out the top five finishers in the Senior Division Player of the Year standings. It is worth noting that McCoy and Elliott both qualified for the Senior Open Championship, played over the Old Course at St. Andrews.
Nothing like an encore performance.
Marshalltown’s Rob Christensen (above) won his second IGA Super Senior Player of the Year in as many years. Started in 2018, the Super-Senior Division is comprised of those that are 65 and older.
Christensen’s wins (Super Senior Division) at the 2018 IGA Senior Match Play Championship, 69th Herman Sani Tournament, The Classic (Elmwood CC) and a runner-up finish at the Carroll Amateur vaulted him just ahead of good friend and last year’s runner-up in the Super Senior Division Dave Sergeant, of Fort Dodge.
Sergeant, who had a strong 2018 himself in the Super Senior Division, added wins at the 40th Iowa Senior Amateur Championship, Carroll Amateur and Fort Dodge Amateur. Sergeant finished runner-up at The Classic, Iowa Masters and the 69th Herman Sani Tournament.
The players will be honored during the IGA Player of the Year & Annual Awards banquet on December 14, at Echo Valley Country Club, Norwalk.