Roanoke native Frankie Moore had plenty of incentive to win the Senior Division title of the Roanoke Valley Match Play Championship on Sunday.
“Can I tell you what inspired me?” volunteered the 60-year-old Moore, a 1977 graduate of Northside High who now lives in Virginia Beach.
“My wife [Barbara] left me a note in the heel of my golf shoes this morning and it said: ‘You have what it takes … make it happen!’
“So I carried that note in my pocket all day.”
Talk about some special-timed karma from the wife.
“And I think I did that on the last hole,” Moore duly noted with a big laugh.
Seemingly responding on command, the lanky Moore holed a 40-foot chip shot on the 18th hole to knock off top-seeded Jack Allara 1 up and finally win a major crown at an event he’s been participating in for years.
“No, it doesn’t happen too often … it’s the first time it has happened to me,” said Moore, who played college golf at East Tennessee State.
“I’ve played a lot of tournament golf, and this is the first time I have ended a tournament that way and won.
“I’ve made some putts to win … made the putt at Countryside in 1977 to win what was then called the Roanoke City-County. It was a stroke-play event and I made like a 10- or 12-footer on the last hole for par to win by one shot.
“But I have never chipped in like that to win a golf tournament.”
Credit the wife for the special message that delivered the timely goods.
“She does special things like that all the time,” Moore noted.
“I wanted to put the senior title on my resume as an accomplishment so I would have the regular and senior crowns.
“And I did that last weekend, too, at the Sleepy Hole Amateur in Suffolk. I won the Sleepy Hole amateur in ‘89 and then last weekend I won the Sleepy Hole senior amateur.
“So on back-to-back weekends I have won both the regular and the senior division titles in both tournaments. So I felt good coming in here.”
Meanwhile, there was some other special stuff for another tournament participant.
That would be Bassett’s Blake Carter, who won the event’s amateur division crown for the second time in six years. Duplicating his first RVMP title in 2014, the long-hitting Carter knocked off two-time winner and No. 3 seed Matt Chandler 3 and 2 in the morning semifinals before taking out pesky No. 4 seed David Hudgins 4 and 3 in the title match.
“It was the putter that I got that has been working for about a month now. It’s a new one obviously because the old ones never worked,” Carter said breaking into laughter.
“I give it all to the putter because I made a lot of really good 15-footers for either par or birdie at really good times.
“And for some reason this golf course really fits my eye. I love every tee shot, I love every second shot, but I give it all to the putter because it worked.”
And Hudgins, a Hardy resident who entered the tournament as an unknown quantity, showed he has game when he eliminated qualifying medalist and No. 1 seed Chase Bailey 2 and 1.
“I had played with Hudgins on Friday, and he’s got some serious game,” Carter noted. “When he beat Chase Bailey in the morning, I conceded that the dude was good.”
In the super senior division, Roanoker Jim Wright — who has been playing some of his best golf ever during the past two years since returning to the area from Illinois — downed top seed Carl Leonard 3 and 2 in the title match.
“I’ve always suffered from a balky putter,” the 65-year-old Wright said. “I’m not putting great but I’m putting better. I just having a good time playing golf again.
“After I got my knees replaced, my 16-year-old son, Walker, starting playing and I wanted to be able to play with him.”
Marvin Taylor won the grand masters title for the second straight year, downing fellow Roanoker Ned Baber 6 and 5.