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PREVIEW: 118th #PattersonCup

State change implemented for shortened 118th Patterson Cup

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Originally set for the lovely Laurel Creek Country Club in Mount Laurel, N.J., the 118th Joseph H. Patterson Cup, GAP’s prestigious stroke-play championship, will now tee off in the state of Pennsylvania. As of Monday, the championship will also be shortened to 18 holes due to impending weather.

Given the projected rainfall stemming from Tropical Storm Isaias, GAP canceled the #PattersonCup first round set for Tuesday, Aug. 4 at The ACE Club. As a result, the event is shortened to 18 holes at The 1912 Club on Wednesday, Aug. 5.

“We unfortunately postponed the GAP Open Championship a few weeks ago. That postponement occurred due to New Jersey’s travel-policy restrictions that included Delaware. While the restriction was in force initially for a short period of time, Delaware is again on New Jersey’s list of restricted states, requiring visitors or residents to again quarantine for two weeks before entering New Jersey, where Laurel Creek is located,” said Kirby Martin, GAP Director of Competitions. “Since we are unsure of the duration of the state’s current restrictions, we felt it was best to seek out a new Patterson Cup venue. We’re thankful that The 1912 Club stepped up and offered to host.”

The 1912 Club, previously known as Plymouth Country Club, played host to the Patterson Cup last in 1963 when William Hyndman, III won his seventh title.

“I was able to get out to The 1912 Club a few times this season before COVID-19 hit. The double venues make it exciting, but really, I’m just happy to be playing a tournament right now. For the GAP to make a venue change in such a short period of time, and for the clubs to be kind enough to open their courses up for a day, it’s pretty awesome all around,” said Pine Valley Golf Club’s Jeff Osberg, the reigning champion.

Osberg has his eyes set on a fourth Patterson trophy (2010, 2016, 2019). In last year’s weather-shortened victory at Applebrook Golf Club, Osberg joined a talented list of three-time Patterson Cup winners: Tavistock Country Club’s Michael Tash and a trio of GAP Hall of Famers in Howard Everitt, W.B. McCullough, Jr. and Harold McFarland. William Hyndman, III holds the record for most Patterson Cup victories with 10.

“The Patterson Cup is one I’ve done well in, and the Silver Cross is still in play, so you’re playing for two championships at once.”

Jeff Osberg, reigning champion

“It’s always exciting to be the defending champion. The Patterson Cup is one I’ve done well in, and the Silver Cross is still in play, so you’re playing for two championships at once. I feel like my game is in the right spot,” said Osberg, 36, of Bryn Mawr, Pa.

Perhaps the most excited to hear venue-change announcement was the Temple University golf team. In 2018, Temple Head Coach Brian Quinn purchased the William Flynn-designed Plymouth Country Club and transitioned it into The 1912 Club. A number of changes and upgrades were instilled, including massive tree removals and tee-box adaptions and additions. The course now serves as Temple’s home club. There’s a parliament — two current and four former — of Owls in the field this week.

“I talked to some of the guys once we heard the news that 1912 would be hosting. We’re really excited that the final day will be at a place we’ve seen multiple times per week playing for Temple,” said Huntingdon Valley Country Club’s Conor McGrath, a rising junior. “It will give us a decent opportunity at performing well against Philly’s best players. A bunch of us are playing well right now, and we’re just excited to compete because we didn’t get that many opportunities this golf season to do that. We really missed it.”

McGrath, in addition to Owl standout Dawson Anders of Indian Valley Country Club, possesses local knowledge. His strongest piece of advice? Keep the ball in front of you.

“There’s been quite a few changes ever since the club changed to 1912. You definitely just have to keep the ball in front of you, and the greens are trickier than they look,” said McGrath, 20, of Huntingdon Valley, Pa. “In reality, you have to play pretty conservative because you can get in trouble pretty quick. Plus, the new tees boxes that were put in, especially on No. 18, make things even more challenging. I’m excited to see how the course holds up [on Wednesday.]”

As mentioned previously by Osberg, the highly-coveted Silver Cross Award will also be up for grabs. This year, the Patterson Cup’s lone round will serve as the second and final round of the Silver Cross, which is presented to the player with the lowest aggregate score in the Qualifying round of the BMW Philadelphia Amateur Championship and the Patterson Cup. Leading the way after rounds of 1-under 69s in #BMWPhillyAm Stroke-Play Qualifying at Lancaster Country Club are Whitemarsh Valley Country Club’s Will Davenport and Five Ponds Golf Club’s Jalen Griffin. Both leaders are in the Patterson field.

Other former titleholders on the Patterson tee sheet include Peter Bradbeer of Merion Golf Club (2017), Cole Berman of Philadelphia Cricket Club (2014), Andrew Mason of Huntingdon Valley Country Club (2011), Greg O’Connor of Bellewood Country Club (2000) and Brad McFadden of Merion Golf Club (1992).

The second oldest Championship in the Golf Association of Philadelphia, the Joseph H. Patterson Cup memorializes a man who fostered the game in its infancy. Joseph Henry Patterson, a Philadelphia Cricket Club member, competed in the first out-of-town match played by a team of Philadelphians. Friends of Patterson donated the Cup, designed by J.E. Caldwell & Co., to the Association in 1900.

Aside from offering live scoring on its website, the Association will provide Joseph H. Patterson Cup updates via its social media outlets. Follow @GAofPhilly on Twitter and Instagram. Use the #PattersonCup hashtag when posting.

GAP
Celebrating Amateur Golf since 1897, GAP, also known as the Golf Association of Philadelphia, is the oldest regional or state golf association in the United States. It serves as the principal ruling body of amateur golf in its region. The Association’s 288 Full Member Clubs and 75,000 individual members are spread across the Eastern half of Pennsylvania and parts of New Jersey and Delaware. The GAP’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.