By Nick Hunter

ST. PAUL, Minn. – A bogey-free round of 5-under 67 Tuesday at Highland National Golf Course helped Eric Chiles to a two-stroke victory at the 49th Minnesota Senior PGA Professional Championship presented by Cadillac.

Chiles picks up his first win since the 2021 season, and now qualifies for the Senior PGA Professional Championship at PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Fla., Oct. 24-29.

“It was pretty solid [round] and I hit it great,” Chiles said following his win Tuesday. “I hit a lot of greens and made a few putts that I shouldn’t have.”

Chiles will be joined by six-time champion Bill Israelson, who carded a second straight round of 1-under 71 Tuesday to finish tied for second with Derek Stendahl to punch their tickets to the championship this fall.

Chris Peterson followed his opening-round 71 with an even par 72 to finish tied for fourth with George Smith at 1-under 143 to claim the final two qualifying spots to the national event.

Entering Tuesday’s final round three shots off the lead, Chiles quickly went to work by sinking his birdie chance at the first to narrow the margin and move to even par for the championship.

He would birdie the par-5 sixth hole to turn in 2-under for the round, carrying momentum to his final nine holes by carding his third birdie of the round at the par-5 10th.

Back-to-back birdies at the 13th and 14th put the 52-year-old professional into the lead for good, carding a final-round 67 to claim his first win since he earned victories at a pair of section events in 2021.

Israelson, whose most recent win at the event came in 2019 at Island View Golf Club, came out firing Tuesday, carding three birdies over his first six holes to reach 4-under for the championship.

But a pair of late bogeys plagued the 66-year-old Israelson, putting him into the clubhouse with a second straight round of 71 to finish in a share of second at 2-under 142.

Stendahl, winner of the 2022 Minnesota Senior Open, played his first 10 holes in 2-under Tuesday to reach 4-under for the championship before his final round was derailed by a double-bogey at the par-4 11th.

He would post an even par 72 on the final day to finish in a share of second with Israelson at 142.

6,638 YARDS, PAR 72

1. Eric Chiles, Chaska TC, 73-67—140 (qualifier)
T2. Bill Israelson, Bemidji T&CC, 71-71—142 (qualifier)
T2. Derek Stendahl, Rush Creek GC, 70-72—142 (qualifier)
T4. Chris Peterson, Oak Glen GC, 71-72—143 (qualifier)
T4. George Smith, StoneRidge GC, 70-73—143 (qualifier)
T6. Jeff Kringen, Spring Hill GC, 70-75—145
T6. Don Berry, Edinburgh USA, 70-75—145
8. Ty Armstrong, GolfTEC, 73-73—146
9. Dean Zahn, Moccasin Creek CC, 75-72—147
10. Chris Borgen, Lost Spur GC, 70-78—148

For complete tournament results go to: