Sauers, Gene - Golf, 1988
Sauers, Savannah’s only golfer on the men’s professional tour, recorded a singular honor in 1988. Not only was he inducted into the Greater Savannah Athletic Hall of Fame, but he was also chosen as the winner of the Lawton M. Calhoun Award and the Athlete of the Year Award for 1987. Sauers won the Region 3-AAAA golf tournament as a senior at Johnson High and went on to win state Class AAAA championship. After his prep career, Sauers attended Alexander City Junior College, where he won Junior College All-American honors and was voted the team’s outstanding player. He transferred to Georgia Southern College where he won the Trans-America Athletic Conference golf title.
Sauers qualified to play on the PGA tour on his first attempt. During his rookie season, he won $36K and finished 127th on the money list. His next year on the tour, he earned $85K and climbed to 122nd. His third year, 1986, was something of a breakthrough for Sauers. He won his first tournament, the Bank of Boston Classic, earning $199K and vaulting to 42nd on the money list. The following year, he earned $244K and was up to 35th in rankings, solidifying his position among the tour’s top young players. During his career, Sauers won the Georgia-Michelob Open twice, both as an amateur and a professional.