Four CNY PGA Profesionals Headed to PGA Professional Championship
Oswego Country Club head professional Michelle Murphy will become just the fourth female to compete in the PGA Professional Golf Championship which begins June 15 in Oregon.
Murphy, of Sherrill, qualified for the national event by coming in second in the Central New York PGA Section Championship last year.
The showcase event for PGA Professionals, held at the Crosswater Club and Meadows Golf Course at Sunriver Resort on June 15-21, features a 312-player field representing 41 PGA Sections competing at the peak of their games, and with its 20 top finishers earning a berth in the PGA Championship. The event was held at Turning Stone last year.
Joining Murphy at the 50th annual event will be CNY PGA peers Rick Bronson (Bronson Aerifying), Dennis Colligan (Cazenovia GC) and Mark Tucker (Cazenovia CC).
Matt Campbell, Former CNY Jr. Tour Player Playing in U.S. Open
Rome's Matt Campbell will be among the golfers to compete in this week's 117th annual U.S. Open at Erin Hills in Wisconsin. The tournament begins Thursday and runs Sunday.
The 28-year-old Campbell earned his U.S. Open berth by winning a qualifying event June 5 at Canoe Brook Country Club in Summit, New Jersey. Cambell (Rome's Teugega Country Club) won in a playoff and was one of five to qualify from the 80-player field.
Campbell is scheduled to tee off at 8:57 a.m. (CST) on Thursday and 2:42 p.m. on Friday.
Clare, Petrin & Tesori Receive Northeast-10 Conference Major Awards
Le Moyne College senior John Clare, freshman Jonathan Petrin and head coach Joe Tesori swept the major men's golf awards in the Northeast-10 Conference as Clare was selected as Player of the Year, Petrin was named Rookie of the Year and Tesori earned Coach of the Year honors.
It's the second straight year Clare was named Player of the Year. Clare (72.38 scoring average) led the Dolphins to a 13th-place finish in the NCAA Division II Championship last month and tied for third individually.
The 22-year-old Clare turned pro after nationals. He is competing in the 108th Massachusetts Open this week with former Le Moyne teammate Aidan Fuller as his caddie. On Thursday, Clare set a course record at Falmouth's TGC at Sacconnesset with a third-round score of 8-under-par 64.
Petrin's scoring average of 75.15 is the best mark by a freshman since Dan McCarthy recorded a 73.94 during the 2003-04 year.
Tesori won his second Coach of the Year honor after guiding the Dolphins to a fourth-place finish at the NCAA Atlantic/East Regional en route to the NCAA Championships.
On a Mission to Get the Ball in the Hole:
Warrior Golf Program Helps Service Members
PGA Professional Ric Pettit (left) instructs Army veteran Michael Raith as part of the Warrior Golf Program at Ridge Golf Club in Chittenango. (M.F. Piraino)
By M.F. Piraino
For PGA professional Ric Pettit, golf instruction is an important part of his job at the Clear Path for Veterans Golf Course. But for the last four years, Pettit's work has taken on a deeper purpose.
After listening to a military veteran talk about the effects of post-traumatic stress disorder, Pettit was inspired to establish the Warrior Golf Program, an eight-week how-to-golf tutorial for service members and veterans. The free program includes golf lessons on chipping, putting, rules and etiquette at the nine-hole, par-35 golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones, formerly known as Skyridge Golf Course, in Chittenango.
"One of the kids started telling me about his day and PTSD," Pettit said. "I just dropped everything so I could focus on him. Then I thought how can I help? I thought maybe golf could definitely help them get through things."
Pettit's Warrior Golf Program, now in its fourth season, is one of the many support programs for military members and their families provided by Clear Path for Veterans, a local non-profit organization located on 78 picturesque acres of fields and woodlands which straddles the borders of Onondaga and Madison Counties. Clear Path leases the golf course from The Ridge Tavern, which offers a panoramic view of Oswego County's Nine Mile power plant to the foothills of the Adirondacks.
In addition to golf instruction, nutrition and personal wellness at Clear Path are incorporated over the eight weeks. Since its inception, the Warrior Golf Program has graduated 36 veterans and active service members. Past graduates have been rewarded with a new set of basic golf clubs, balls, golf glove and a polo shirt.
Army veteran Michael Raith, 37, was among the first graduates of the Warrior Golf Program. Raith, who served in Afghanistan with the 10th Mountain Division, said the Pettit's program in addition to the incredible view at the Ridge has been therapeutic."I'd never golfed before but I was always stuck in my house which didn't help my depression." said Raith, a native of California. "Ric's an awesome teacher. Golf helped to get me out. It's the scenery, it's the socializing. You're out talking to people. It's calming and relaxing. It really helped me. "
Any service member is eligible. Most of Pettit's golf students are on active duty. Those interested must fill out an application through the Clear Path website to get into the program.
Pettit meets 10 to 12 men and women per eight-week program Wednesday and Saturday mornings. Six of Pettit's CNY PGA peers have helped out with golf instruction. Students can practice away from class at the Clear Path for Veterans Golf Course and golf for free.
"There's a lot of goal setting," Pettit said. "You have to be committed to getting better. My teaching isn't overly regimented. I try to have as much fun as I can with them."
"It's like being back in the military and you're on a mission to get that ball in the hole. It's fun," Raith said.
Under the direction of Pettit, who is employed by Clear Path, the Clear Path for Veterans Golf Course has begun the process of operating with an all-volunteer staff, many of whom are military veterans. The 14 volunteers, including 12 veterans, all help with course maintenance and mowing the nine fairways and greens. The Clear Path for Veterans Golf Course is open to the public. All proceeds benefit Clear Path programs.
Clear Path for Veterans, which is in its sixth year, is located on the site of the former Skyridge Country Club. The former clubhouse has been renovated and now serves as Clear Path's main building and center of operations.
Pettit knows his program has made an impact. A former student, a Vietnam veteran, wrote him a letter that made his eyes well-up.
"He talked about friendship more than anything," the 53-year-old Pettit said. "A lot of people think I'm just teaching. But for me, it's a lot more than that. I believe this is helping people. I'm not an expert in PTSD or depression. But those who suffer them get holed up in their house. They've got to get out of the house. That's key for them."
2017 Spring Meeting of the Membership
The Annual Spring Meeting of the Membership held on Monday, April 17th at Turning Stone Resort Casino drew 81 PGA Members and Apprentices. The Section welcomed current PGA of America President Paul Levy, PGA. Paul discussed the importance of committing to the Long Term Strategic Plan along with the Association's ongoing efforts in pursuit of the PGA of America's Mission: Growing the Game and Serving the PGA Member.
100th PGA Annual Meeting - New York City
Congratulations, Joe Tesori, PGA!
Congratulations, 2016 CNY Special Award Winners!
Miles Blundell Named CNY PGA Golf Professional of the Year
Miles Blundell, Director of Golf Operations at Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, has been named 2016 Central New York PGA Golf Professional of the Year.
Overtime Regulation Webinar
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