|Two-time Amateur champ Chris Anderson returned to GAP competition.|
NOTEBOOK: #PatCup Round 1
WILMINGTON, Del. - Chris Anderson has been removed from the golfing ranks for quite some time now.
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The question is, where has he been and what has he been up to?
He says he’s been attending to the more important things in life as of late. Like being the father of his two children, his son Harry, 15, and daughter Lily, 13.
“My kids are my priorities right now,” Anderson, 55, of Wilmington, Del., said. “They aren’t really into golf but they are enjoying many other sports. My son plays baseball and my daughter enjoys playing hockey and lacrosse and that is why I took a break from the game. It is great to watch them grow up.”
Anderson turned professional in 1984 after graduating from the University of Virginia, where he was a senior captain of the golf team for the Wahoos and spent a total of 17 years competing among the professional ranks.
He was the winner of back-to-back BMW Philadelphia Amateur Championships in 1983 and 1984, one of only nine players to do so in the 117 versions of the event.
Ultimately, Anderson had more than enough of the grind that comes with being a professional and stepped away from the game in 2001.
“Once I stepped away from professional golf, I didn’t miss it at all,” Anderson said. “I know how much effort you have to put in to compete at the highest of levels and I wasn’t willing to put in all of those hours with my kids being born. It is a grind playing world-class golf because the game will find any weaknesses and exploit them. I had my good spots and I have a lot of great memories.”
Wednesday in the 115th playing of the Joseph H. Patterson Cup at Wilmington Country Club’s South Course, Anderson teed it up at his home club. It gave him an opportunity to reminisce about the 1984 #BMWPhillyAm, when he defeated Blaise Giroso, 2&1, on the South Course.
But it has been quite some time since he has competed in a GAP event. Anderson’s last appearance came in the 2013 Middle-Amateur Championship at Fieldstone Golf Club.
“I haven’t played in the Philadelphia Amateur and Patterson Cup in quite a long time and haven’t been playing in any of the Delaware State Golf Association events,” Anderson said. “I played this event primarily because of the venue. I went out and qualified for the event at Philmont Country Club and got the job done with a 72. I didn’t have any expectations coming into today but I knew the grounds crew would have the course in terrific shape.”
Anderson's pedigree in his home state of Delaware is one that needs no questioning.
Anderson is a winner of a record seven Delaware State Opens, (1983, 1985, 1988, 1990, 1992, 2003, 2004), plus the 2005 Delaware Amateur. His victories in the 21st century, Anderson said, were based on “residual talent,” since he wasn’t competing and playing much anymore. Nevertheless, he’s still proud of the accomplishments.
Through 13 holes Wednesday, Anderson found himself at 1-over par, but an ailing back would hurt his chances to make the cut. He’d go on to card 9-over 80.
"It was a lot of fun to come back and compete at a place where I have a lot of memories and am very fond of,” Anderson said. “It is neat to see the course stand up against the best players in the area.”
Anderson is doing well for himself, and while he’s back in the competitive ranks once again, he’s moved on to his next life’s work: fatherhood.
“Being a parent is a lot of fun and it is what is rewarding for me now,” Anderson said. “I had my fill with golf and I had no trouble stepping away from the game. Now I get to chase my kids around and live through them which is pretty cool.”
Silver Cross update
The race for the Silver Cross Award saw a drastic shift in the standings after Wednesday’s round.
The season-long title, which is awarded to the player with the lowest aggregate score in the qualifying rounds of the Amateur Championship and the Patterson Cup, will be decided in tomorrow’s concluding 18.
After Philadelphia Cricket Club’s John Brennan, who held a three-shot lead after earning the BMW Philadelphia Amateur Championship stroke-play medal, was forced to withdraw from the #PatCup in result of a lingering wrist injury, the door was left ajar for others in pursuit.
Now tied atop the standings with a 1-over total is Lancaster Country Club’s Aaron Fricke and Merion Golf Club’s Peter Bradbeer, the championship’s leader after Round 1.
Bradbeer, a rising sophomore at Bucknell University, fired a 3-under 68 in the morning wave to propel himself up the Silver Cross leaderboard. He stood tied for 16th heading into today’s round. Fricke, a senior standout for Drexel University, carded a 1-over 72 at Wilmington to maintain great position as well after starting the day in third place.
Sitting just two shots back at 3-over par is Cricket’s Gregor Orlando, this year’s #BMWPhillyAm Champion, and Huntingdon Valley Country Club’s Jeff Osberg, the reigning Patterson Cup winner, Silver Cross titleholder and William Hyndman, III Player of the Year.
Golf Association of Philadelphia
Founded in 1897, the Golf Association of Philadelphia (GAP) is the oldest regional golf association in the United States and serves as the principal ruling body of amateur golf in its region. Its 151 Member Clubs and 57,000 individual members are spread across parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland. As Philadelphia’s Most Trusted Source of Golf Information, the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.