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Coatesville’s Saylor cruises to victory in Spring Net

  COATESVILLE, Pa. — A career-best front nine score carried Coatesville Country Club’s Richard Saylor into the captain’s chair at the TEE IT FORWARD — Spring Net Championship Tuesday. The home-club hopeful opened with a 1 over (gross) and never looked back, posting 39 points en route to his first Golf Association of Philadelphia victory.

   “This is exciting for me,” Saylor, of Coatesville, Pa., said. “I’m glad to represent Coatesville (Country Club) well.”

  Playing in his first Spring Net Championship, Saylor, who resides across from 13th hole at Coatesville (par 71, 6,123 yards) had a feeling course familiarity would work in his favor. It did.

   “I figured the home-field advantage would be a real bonus,” Saylor, 61, said. “I played the front as well as I ever have in the 23 years I’ve been a member here. I kept the ball in the fairway, and that’s really not my game. Fairways are a premium here. I putted really well on the front, but I expected to. What I didn’t expect was that my tee ball would be as accurate as it was.”

  Saylor hit eight fairways on his outward tour. His only miss occurred on the first hole (par 5, 469 yards). Saylor’s 7-iron from 138 yards landed short of the green. He chipped on and converted a 12-footer for a net birdie. Saylor fired a gross birdie on the par 4, 272-yard No. 7 following a crisp drive and a soft wedge to 10 feet below the flagstick.

   “I made a lot of par saving putts on the front,” Saylor, a 13-handicapper, said. “The greens were perfectly true. Chris Walton, our superintendent, did a great job to have this course playing phenomenal. I’ve never seen our greens putt any better.”

  Saylor wasn’t as swell on his venture inward. On the rolling No. 10 (par 5, 519 yards), he three-putted for bogey (gross) after reaching the green in regulation. Saylor, who equipped his driver on 16 occasions Tuesday, saw his tee shot on the strenuous No. 13 (par 3, 215 yards) settle underneath a pine tree, adjacent the right greenside bunker. He nestled a chip onto the green and two-putted from 25 feet.

   “There was a narrow window between branches,” Saylor said of his second shot. “My mind said if you just hit a wedge, it’s going to go through that window. It did. That was a fortunate shot.”

  Saylor survived Coatesville’s self-proclaimed “Amen Corner,” carding net pars on Nos. 12 (par 3, 219 yards), 13 and 14 (par 4, 401 yards). He became “sloppy” on No. 15 (par 5, 530 yards). Saylor missed the green with a 6-iron and failed to convert a 20-footer to save par.

   “The back I find more difficult here,” he said. “I guess I started playing pretty tight. I’m very happy with the front. I get frustrated that I can’t put 18 holes together. But the back is hard for me here.”   The Spring Net Championship, formerly known as the First Handicap Tournament, is open to players 18 years of age and older with handicap index less than 36.0. The event began in 1946.

  This year, the Association adopted the TEE IT FORWARD parameters for the event. It also changed the scoring format to net Stableford.

  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 145 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.

Overall
Name, club Points
Richard Saylor, Coatesville Country Club 39
Frank Andrusiewicz, Makefield Highlands Golf Club 37
Ralph Smith, III, Concord Country Club 36
Edsel Rutenbar, Concord Country Club 35
Hal Brown, Five Ponds Golf Club 35
Charles Caparo, Plymouth Country Club 33
William Erskine, Philadelphia Publinks GA 32
Chang Choo, Blue Bell Country Club 32
John Sivel, Bala Golf Club 32
Rick Ames, Philadelphia Publinks GA 32
Chad Collingwood, Spring Ford Country Club 32
Thomas Hare, III, Philadelphia Country Club 32
Brian Kreamer, Bala Golf Club 31
Robert Murray, McCall Golf & Country Club 31
Thomas Schneiders, Philadelphia Cricket Club 31
George Reby, Greate Bay Country Club 30
Joseph Templin, LedgeRock Golf Club 30
Edward Attarian, Commonwealth National Golf Club 29
Chuck Clifford, Spring Ford Country Club 29
Brian Mulvenna, White Oaks Country Club 29
C. Michael Conway, Plymouth Country Club 29
Joseph DeAngelis, Jericho National Golf Club 28
Gregory Rowe, Downingtown Country Club 28
Luke Pape, Tavistock Country Club 28
Brett Weisberg, Philadelphia Cricket Club 27
Dave Dillon, Huntsville Golf Club 27
John O’Rourke, McCall Golf & Country Club 27
Ed Kocher, Bent Creek Country Club 26
Jack Impriano, Applebrook Golf Club 26
Art Brosius, Golf Course at Glen Mills 25
Derek Partin, White Oaks Country Club 25
Chris Myers, Greate Bay Country Club 25
Edward Osciak, Jr., Loch Nairn Golf Club 25
Edward Blomstedt, Talamore Country Club 24
David Dugery, Bala Golf Club 24
Edward Wudyka, Jr., White Manor Country Club 24
Brian Glancey, Jericho National Golf Club 23
Donald Galbraith, Stonewall 23
Tom Watchko, Plymouth Country Club 23
Bill Quinlan, Spring Ford Country Club 23
Joe Barbara, Jericho National Golf Club 23
Vaughn Smith, Penn Oaks Golf Club 23
Aaron Johns, Spring Ford Country Club 23
Francis Robinson, Hershey’s Mill Golf Club 21
Gary Lean, Five Ponds Golf Club 18
Michael Denner, White Manor Country Club 18
Schuyler Wickes, Phoenixville Country Club 16
Nicholas Zanni, Philadelphia Publinks GA 12
John VanDame, Five Ponds Golf Club WD
Michael Sauter, Cedarbrook Country Club WD
George Hilley, McCall Golf & Country Club WD
Paul Young, Talamore Country Club WD
Bill Rooney, Greate Bay Country Club NS
Gary Zimmer, Philadelphia Country Club NS