Cold and blustery conditions didn’t prevent some torrid second-round action during Saturday’s men’s and women’s divisions of the Schenectady Classic at Schenectady Municipal Golf Course.
Rachel Barlette of Shaker Ridge Country Club rallied from a couple shots back to tie former champion Pat Mayne in regulation and then chipped in for birdie on the first extra to win the Schenectady Women’s Classic.
“It’s ironic because I chipped in with my 60-degree wedge, and it was my wedges that weren’t working in the first round,” said Barlette. “Pat and I were tied after nine holes, but Pat took a two-shot lead over me when she birdied the 12th hole and I bogeyed. I came back to birdie the 16th hole, and then made a par on the 17th hole when Pat bogeyed, so we were tied headed into the final hole.”
Not to be outdone, two-time men’s champion Ben Bates extended his lead to eight shots with a 1-under-par 71 for a two-day total of 137 heading into Sunday’s final round. The only other sub-par round of the day belonged to Joe Fitzsimmons, who also carded a 71 for a total of 145. Eight-time titlist Paul Pratico is next (76-146), followed by Griff Hunter (73-147), Travis Koch (77-148) and Joe Marro (76-148).
Twenty-five players made the men’s cut at 155. The final round begins Sunday at 7 a.m.
Made the cut — Ben Bates 71-137, Joe Fitzsimmons 71-145, Paul Pratico 76-146, Griff Hunter 73-147, Travis Koch 77-148, Joe Marro 76-149, Kevin Broderick 75-150, Tom Salmon 73-150, Jim Welch 76-150, Dan Russo 76-151, Jim Mueller 77-151, Jimmy King 75-151, Bob Cooper 75-152, Mark Chylinski 79-153, Carter Flanigan 79-153, Alex Olbrych 76-153, Andrew Weise 76-154, Chad Stoffer 75-154, Paul Pratico Jr. 75-154, Mike Stopera 78-155, Matthew Green 76-155, Lance Hope 76-155, Clint Lange 77-155, Brandon Haase 79-155, Greg Bennett 78-155.
Gross — x-Rachel Barlette 77-154, Pat Mayne 77-154, Leslie Arakelian 78-156, Anne Poulin 80-164, Ann Capobianco 88-166, Debra DiMaggio 88-166, Grace Kochan 84-171, Laurie McBain 85-171, Laura Couch 87-174, Cindy LaFleur 85-176, Mary Assey 90-182, Sharon Pike 93-183, Christine Brown 94-190, Jamie Hall 91-190, Mary Hattie 99-190, Bonnie St. Denis 92-192, Carol Aiello 97-193, Anne Noonan 97-203, Liz SantaBarbara 105-214, Nancy Kroll 92-WD.
Net leaders — Poulin 142, Capobianco 146, Aiello 149, Pike 149, Hattie 150.
BREAKTHROUGH FOR KERR
Veteran Mohawk Golf Club Director of Golf Jeremy Kerr won the second major of his career — and first since 2003 — when he pulled out a one-shot victory over Bob Cain of Saratoga National Golf Club in the final round of the Northeastern New York PGA’s Donald Ross Classic Monday at Glens Falls Country Club.
The Donald Ross Classic is a two-day tournament, with the first round played at The Sagamore Resort and the second one played at Glens Falls CC. Both courses were designed by famed course architect Donald Ross.
Kerr, 49, a Linton High School and Lynn University graduate, had a two-shot lead over Cain headed to the par-3 18th hole, and he had to get up-and-down for a bogey to win. His tee shot landed long and right of the pin, leaving him a short-sided pitch shot from a downhill lie. He bounced the ball into the hill and just missed an 18-foot par putt, but it was enough to seal the win.
“I was expecting someone to shoot 4- or 5-under, and I thought I would have to shoot at least even-par to have a chance at winning,” the Niskayuna resident said. “Donald Ross courses are extremely challenging. The greens are hard to read. I lucked out.”
Kerr said he leaned on his short game in both rounds.
“[Sunday] the golf course was playing really hard. It was very windy, and we had rain come into play on the last 4-5 holes,” he said. “I was just trying to hold it together.”
Kerr’s short game helped him shoot 1-under-par on the back nine on Sunday to keep him close to the lead. Monday, he was 1-under-par headed to the last few holes and had to grind out the win. He finished the two-day tournament at 7-over-par. He rolled in two birdies in the final round. He earned $1,600.
Kerr, a former assistant pro at Wolferts Roost CC and Shaker Ridge CC as well as the head pro at Oneonta CC for three years, was the 2003 NENY PGA Player of the Year. He was a dominant player as an assistant pro, winning five Assistant Player of the Year awards and capturing three NENY PGA Assistant Stroke Play Championships, as well as an Assistants Match Play title.
“When I won a tournament at Normanside CC last year, I believe it was my first win of any kind in almost 10 years,” Kerr said. “I had back surgery in 2011, and that kept me out of action for a couple of seasons. When I first got the head pro job at Mohawk, I did play quite a bit, but then I had to concentrate on the outside events every Monday. But our new owner made it clear that he wanted me to play more and to teach more. I still do a lot of [administrative] stuff, but I do less than I ever did because I’ve got a great staff.
“It’s nice to know that at 49 I’ve still got it.”
Rounding out the top 10 were Cain (8-over par), Glenn Davis of Albany CC (10-over-par), Scott Berliner of Eagle Crest GC (10-over-par), Rob Shuey of Onteora GC (11-over-par), Chris Sanger of Woodstock GC (11-over-par), Justin Hearley of Burden Lake CC (11-over-par), Michael Shine of Schuyler Meadows (11-over-par), Marc Levesque of Wyantenuck CC (12-over-par) and Kyle Kressler of Cedar View GC (14-over-par).
BELLEMARE BEST AT TROY
Former club member Taylor Bellemare, a Hoosick Falls native now living in Manchester, Vt., held off several challengers on a crowded leaderboard to win the 79th annual Troy Invitational last Sunday at the Country Club of Troy.
Bellemare was a member of the CC of Troy for two seasons and used that course knowledge to his advantage. In the opening round last Saturday, he rolled in seven birdies. The next day, he collected four birdies on the front nine, but double bogeys on the ninth and 10th holes erased those red marks and forced him to play more conservatively.
“[Last Saturday] was scoreable, but [the next day] was a lot windier,” he said. “I started off great with those four birdies on the front, but then when I doubled the ninth and 10th hole, I basically scratched all the birdies. Then I had to grind it in. Ryan [Davis] played well on the back, and Jack Downey was right there, as well. We all had the [scoring] apps on our phones, so we knew where we stood. They tucked some pins in the final round, and it was tough.”
Bellemare, who credited playing four year of collegiate golf at Iona for sharpening his game, said he enjoys coming back to Troy to compete, even though his current club [Equinox Golf Resort and Spa] is one of the best in the northeast.
“I love coming back here to see all the guys, and there are so many great players here,” he said.”They love their golf here. They also support it very well. They come out in carts to follow the action.
“You’ve got to putt well here to win.”
The other top players in the open division were Downey (73-146), Griffith Hunter (73-146), Davis (74-146), Nick Lyons (75-148), Ben Rublee (77-149), Joe Quijano (74-150), Aaron Simone (74-151), Chad Stoffer (77-151) and Ryan Porter (76-153). William Hadden (75-147) won the senior division, followed by Kevin Cassidy (78-151) and Tim Flanigan (81-155).
Kennedy Swedick, Samantha Von Rohr, Kellen Dean and Brady Trembley won their divisions in the NENY PGA Junior PGA Championship over the weekend at Town of Colonie Golf Course and advanced to the national event at Cog Hill in Chicago.
Colonie Golf & Country Club will host the local qualifier on July 5 for the NYS Boys’ & Girls’ Junior Amateur Championships July 26-27 at Soaring Eagles. There is a $25 fee to qualify and a $150 entry fee for the 36-hole stroke play championship.
McGregor Links CC hosts the 92nd annual NYS Women’s Amateur and Mid-Amateur July 11-12.
The NENY PGA’s annual “Day for the Director,” a memorial tournament in the name of the late, longtime pro Tom DeBerry, will be held June 26 at Normanside CC. All proceeds benefit area youth golf through the PGA NENY Reach Foundation. For team entries or to donate, go to www.neny.pga.com.
Town of Colonie GC’s Noel Gebauer and NENY PGA tournament operations manager Christian Torres will play 100 holes to help raise money for the veterans and their families to learn the game of golf at no cost. They will play a match on July 8. To donate, go to neny.pga.com/about-the-foundation/
Canajoharie G&CC will host the third annual Ladies Invitational July 11. Entry fee will be $150 per two-person team and includes golf, cart, Continental breakfast, buffet lunch and cash prizes. There is a limit of 36 teams. Make checks payable to Canajoharie Women’s Golf Committee and mail them to Canajoharie Women’s Golf Committee c/o Betsy Baker 131 Walnut St. Canajoharie NY 13317.
Schenectady Municipal Golf Course will host the 14th annual Schenectady City School District Athletic Hall of Fame Golf Tournament Sept 18. The format will be a modified four-person scramble. Entry fee is $420 per foursome and includes golf, cart, buffet and prizes. This event is named after SCSD Hall of Fame member Pete Famiano. Call Bob Pezzano at 518-346-9297 for more information.
Briar Creek Golf Course will host the Coors Light Tournament July 15. Entry fee is $75 and includes golf, Continental breakfast, lunch at the turn and a grill buffet after golf. Contact the Briar Creek pro shop (518-355-6145) to reserve your foursome.
The Saratoga County Men’s County Amateur, no longer open only to Saratoga County residents, will be played July 1 at Eagle Crest Golf Club and July 2 at Saratoga Spa State Golf Course. There will be two scratch divisions for the 36-hole event — open and senior. Opening-round tee times begin at 7:30 a.m. Tee times for the second round will be later in the day. Entry fee is $95. Make checks payable to Saratoga County Am and mail them to Salvatore Romano, P.O. Box 136, Clifton Park NY 12065. For more information, contact Romano (518-339-2060) or Dave Smith (518-813-1695).
The second annual 9 & Dine Golf Scramble, to benefit To Love a Child, Inc., will be held July 22 at Fairways of Halfmoon Golf Club. There will be registration at 3:15 p.m., followed by a 4 p.m. shotgun start. Entry fee is $85 and includes nine holes of golf with cart, prizes, an Italian buffet dinner and a cocktail hour. There also will be a themed basket auction and a 50/50 raffle. For more information, contact To Love a Child, P.O. Box 165, Clifton Park, NY 12065 or call 518-859-4424. Proceeds will benefit Food Forests & Clean Water in Zimbabwe and Thyme to Thrive Educational Programs in the Capital Region.
Schenectady Municipal Golf Course is the site for the Schenectady High School Football Golf Tournament July 9 at 9 a.m. Entry fee is $135 and includes golf, cart, Continental breakfast, hot dogs/hamburgers/refreshments at the turn, dinner, a golf towel, T-shirt and golf divot/marker tool. Contact Schenectady High head coach Carmen DePoalo at 518-495-6555 for more information.
David Duval, whose father and grandfather were Schenectady natives, will be the featured player in the inaugural Charity Skins Game Tournament to benefit the Boys and Girls Clubs of Schenectady Aug. 16 at Mohawk Golf Club. Homestead Funding will be the hall of fame sponsor. The former No. 1-ranked player in the world, Duval won the Open Championship and the Players Championship among his 13 PGA Tour wins. Blaine McCallister, who has five PGA Tour victories and has been very familiar to local golf fans as a longtime contestant in the former Ellis Hospital Capital District Skins Game, will be the tournament host.
Also entered in the four-person skins format will be two other familiar names to golf fans. Darren Clarke has won 21 tournaments worldwide, including the 2011 Open Championship. He was a five-time player and the 2016 captain for the European Ryder Cup team. Fred Funk won eight times on the PGA Tour, including the Players Championship, and he’s also won nine times on the Champions Tour. He was a member of the 2003 and 2005 Presidents Cup Team as well as the 2004 Ryder Cup team for the U.S. Contact Joel Slutsky (518-376-9909) for more information.
The Epson Tour’s Twin Bridges Championship (formerly the Symetra Tour) is set for July 8-10 at Pinehaven Country Club. The Epson Tour is the official “Road to the LPGA.”
The Fedullo-Catena Golf Tournament, for the benefit of St. Anne Institute in Albany, will be held Sept. 19 at Shaker Ridge CC. Entry fee is $225 and includes golf, carts, lunch, cocktails, dinner, refreshments on the course, tournament gift, wingspan prize raffle tickets, money raffle ticket, first aid kit and a putting contest. The format will be four-person scramble. There will be a 12:30 p.m. shotgun start. For more information, contact Angela Fedullo (518-437-6520).
The CMN Upstate Empire Classic will be held Sept 9 at Airway Meadows Golf Club. Entry fee is $600 per foursome and includes golf, cart, food at the turn, drinks and end of the round lunch buffet. There are numerous tee sponsorships available. Make checks payable to Ace Hardware Foundation. For more information, contact Lauren Vosganian at 518-580-9870. All proceeds benefit the Bernard and Millie Duker Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center.
Dave Quivey aced the third hole at Schenectady Municipal Golf Course.
Zane Coonrad of the host club used a 6-iron for his first hole-in-one on the 162-yard second hole at the Country Club of Troy.
At Western Turnpike Golf Club, Conor McMahon hit an 8-iron for a 178-yard ace on the eighth hole of the blue nine.
Jeff Zier used a sand wedge from 92 yards for his hole-in-one on the eighth hole at Cobleskill G&CC.
At Holland Meadows, Tom Traskos hit an 8-iron for an ace on the 130-yard eighth hole.
Bowling standout Ed Gumm also knows how to wield a golf club, as he recorded the rare albatross on the par-5 10th hole at Amsterdam Municipal Golf Course.
Jim Geiger, another kegling ace, eagled the par-4 17th hole at Amsterdam Municipal.
Quivey had a big week. He also eagled the ninth hole at Schenectady Municipal.
Also at Schenectady Municipal, Dave Mitchell holed out from 80 yards with a pitching wedge for an eagle-2 on the par-4 fifth hole on his birthday.
Pete Dominic eagled the par-5 13th hole while competing in the 300 golf league at Eagle Crest Golf Club.
Reach Bob Weiner at [email protected].
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