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Shawnee’s Choy, Kennedy shoot 70, snag The Deeg Sezna

 LAFAYETTE HILL, Pa. — Evan Choy ended Paul Kennedy’s club championship streak a year ago at Shawnee Inn & Golf Resort. The latter won four of the previous five titles before falling to the rising Millersville University junior in the 27-hole final. | Scorecards | Photo gallery | History |

  So when Kennedy received an e-mail from the Golf Association of Philadelphia regarding The Deeg Sezna, he knew whom to pick as a partner. Choy and Kennedy shelved their spirited Shawnee rivalry Monday to capture the event’s 15th edition at Whitemarsh Valley Country Club (par 72, 6,516 yards).

  The format is selective drive/alternate shot.

  “He kicked my butt last year,” Kennedy, 45, said. “I figured this would be a pretty good format for us. We do a lot of alternate shot at our country club. This is a format that we’re familiar with. He tried to get me within my wedge distance, which is 125 [yards]. Whoever was closest to the 125-yard shot in, we knew were going to take that one.”

  “We both hit it really well off the tee. We needed him to putt today,” Choy, 20, added. “I wasn’t putting well for the first 12, 13 holes. I had a stretch of four or five holes where I was putting and I wasn’t making a single thing. We decided toward the end to make sure he was rolling the rock. It worked out.”

  Sure did.

  Kennedy stamped five of the team’s six birdies on the day. He dropped a six-footer on the par 5, 532-yard No. 3 after Choy lifted a wedge 86 yards. The Stroudsburg, Pa. residents reached the next par 5 (No. 5, 506 yards) in two strokes, and Kennedy punctuated a 15-footer for a 4. Choy’s power catered to his partner’s pithy putter on No. 7 (par 4, 409 yards). He hammered a 7-iron 185 yards to 30 feet below the hole location. Kennedy converted an uphill, left-to-right bender for birdie. The red figures negated a triple bogey on No. 2 (par 4, 397 yards), where Kennedy’s pitching wedge from 123 yards plugged into the front left bunker.

  A 3 under inward nine illustrated the team’s “give Choy a wedge, Kennedy a putter” strategy. On No. 13 (par 4, 370 yards), Choy knocked a wedge 87 yards to eight feet for a Kennedy birdie. A 30-yard pitch from Choy on No. 17 (par 5, 490 yards) gave Kennedy a gimme. Choy labeled the par 4, 415-yard 15th the team’s “escape hole.” Both players found trees on the right side. Kennedy then clipped a branch with his approach, leaving his teammate with a yardage of 125. Choy responded with a wedge to three feet for a critical par save.

  Choy’s putter harnessed energy from Kennedy’s on Nos. 16 (par 3, 138 yards) and 18 (par 5, 490 yards). He rolled in a five-footer on the first following his teammate’s 8-iron set-up. Choy amended for a flailed 5-iron approach from 190 yards on the 18th hole by burying a 25-footer for par.

  “It was just a good putt. Thank God it went in,” Choy said.

  Choy and Kennedy carpooled to Whitemarsh Valley Monday. The commute took an hour and a half; Choy, serving as the GPS in the passenger’s seat, missed a few turns.

  He didn’t’ mislead Kennedy on the golf course.

  “I enjoy the camaraderie we have,” Kennedy, a bartender, said. “On the car ride down, we were talking about strategy. We didn’t always take the drive that was the farthest. That’s the problem I notice in this format. People always the longest drive. Even if you’re only 70 percent of your shot, sometimes I’d rather swing 100 percent.”

  “We just needed to get wedges in our hands. Even when we had tough pars, we had wedges,” Choy added. “We play to each other’s strengths.”

Junior-Junior
  Brendan Nolan’s son Darren needed a partner for The Deeg Sezna. An old buddy from his days on the Cheltenham High School golf team came to mind. Nolan called Michael R. Brown, Jr., a two-time GAP Major Champion who readily accepted the invitation.

  Darren met Brown 30 minutes prior to their round Monday. The two quickly synced up to win the event’s Junior-Junior (par 72, 5,829 yards) title.

  “I’m sure we’ll be playing golf together from this point forward. I hit the jackpot on this one,” Brown, 43, of Maple Shade, N.J., said. “He drives the ball like a pro. He does a lot of things that good players do. I imagine he’s practicing very hard on his game.”

  “Michael was really helpful,” Nolan, 12, of Glenside, Pa., said. “He helped with his driving distance so we could reach all of the par 5s in two. He helped with his wedge game a lot because that’s where one of my weaknesses is right now.”

  Look to the par 5, 476-yard No. 5 as an example of Brown’s distance meshing with Nolan’s growing ability. After reaching the green in two, Brown, who won the Middle-Amateur Championship in 2009 and Open Championship in 2010, ran an eagle attempt 20 feet past the jar. Nolan, an incoming junior at Abington Junior High School, sank the comebacker for birdie.

  The Deeg Sezna celebrates the mentorship of the older generation for its younger counterparts. It is named in honor of Davis “Deeg” Sezna, Jr. of Hartefeld National, who lost his life on Sept. 11, 2001 in the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City.

  Deeg, an avid golfer long a mentor to his younger brothers Teddy and Willy, and a recent graduate of Vanderbilt University with a degree in economics, was in his sixth day of work on the 104th floor of the South Tower when the terrorists struck.

  To memorialize his name, the Golf Association of Philadelphia and his father, Davis Sezna, Sr., established the Deeg Sezna, pairing a junior player and an older amateur in a better ball competition, with a minimum age difference of 10 years and the stipulation that the younger player be 21 or younger. The goal is to give experienced golfers quality time with the next generation, and vice versa.

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.

Gross
Junior Division
Name, club Score
Paul Kennedy/Evan Choy, Shawnee Inn & Golf Resort 70
Robert Olseski/Jeff Kavanagh, Sandy Run CC 72
Matt Mancini/Michael Fedak, Jr., Glenmaura National GC/Spring Ford CC 73
Buddy Aiken/Jack Mitchell, V, St. Davids GC/Waynesborough CC 73
Gregory Buliga/Patrick Laushell, Yardley CC 73
Carlos Fullerton/Scott Harrington, Brookside CC of Allentown/Moselem Springs GC 73
William Weihenmayer/D.J. Pinciotti, III, Huntingdon Valley CC 73
Richard Ogorek/Ryan Bree, Fieldstone GC 73
Scott Storck/Justin Dougherty, Philadelphia Cricket Club 75
Michael Gregor/Wade Gregor, Huntingdon Valley CC 77
J.J. Berenato/Jack St. Amour, Llanerch CC 77
Michael Rose/Daniel Galbreath, Talamore CC/Huntingdon Valley CC 78
Hugh Farris/Rocco Sciotto, Huntingdon Valley CC 78
Jim Fullerton/Max Harrington, Brookside CC of Allentown/Moselem Springs GC 78
Sean Torpey/Mathew Becker, Commonwealth National GC 79
Matthew Teesdale/Nicholas Hano, III, Commonwealth National GC/Aronimink GC 79
Peter Chieppor/Jon Chronister, Bent Creek CC 79
Ari Flaisher/Emmett Fox, McCall G&CC 80
Daniel Kilpatrick/Liam Caspar, Medford Village CC/Running Deer GC 81
Joe Sullivan/Matthew McGettigan, Sandy Run CC 81
John Fleming/Matt Fleming, Spring Mill CC 82
Ryan Brennan/Geoff Sheehan, Rolling Green GC/French Creek GC 82
Ron Dirienzi/Nolan Dirienzi, Rolling Green GC 83
Marc Crane/Sam Dalton, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Overbrook GC 83
Rick Studer/Eric Studer, Makefield Highlands GC 85
Matt Mingione/Nick Mingione, Plymouth CC 85
Matthew Brennan, Sr./Matthew Brennan, Rolling Green GC 85
Jeff St. Amour/Jack McClatchy, Llanerch CC 86
Stephen Shewbrooks/Archie Filshill, Jr., Huntingdon Valley CC 88
James Mangano, Jr./James Mangano, III, Manufacturers G&CC 89
Bob Schmalbach/Shane McCullough, Five Ponds GC/Blue Bell CC 93
Aaron Shatzman/Ben Shatzman, Meadowlands CC 95
Sean Caspar/Fred Caspar, Running Deer GC 96
Philip Repetto/Anthony Repetto, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Penn Oaks GC WD
Matthew Weaver/Brian Weaver, CC of York WD
Seth Melroy/Matthew Taylor, Jeffersonville GC/Gulph Mills GC WD
Junior-Junior Division
Name, club Score
Michael R. Brown, Jr./Darren Nolan, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Talamore CC 69
Ryan Carroll/Henry Fish, Chester Valley GC 73
John VanDame, Jr./Joshua Ryan, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Philadelphia Junior Tour 76
William Mitchell/Patrick Isztwan, Huntingdon Valley CC 76
Nathan Guertler/Adam Warner, Laurel Creek CC/Tavistock CC 78
Douglas Gregor/Michael Vesey, Huntingdon Valley CC 79
David Guertler/Matthew Messenger, Laurel Creek CC 79
Gregory Hurchalla/Charlie Hurchalla, The Springhaven Club 86
Max Mallon/Sean Mallon, GC at Glen Mills 93
Rick Uhr/Tyler Uhr, Philadelphia Publinks/GAP Junior Players Club 94
Mixed Division
Name, club Score
Peter Oppenheimer/Casey Oppenheimer, Whitemarsh Valley CC 78
Meagan Bonner/Kevin Bonner, Tavistock CC/Talamore CC 79
Owen Brown/Kelly Brown, Coatesville CC 80
Sean Grieve/Alyssa Washeleski, Philadelphia Cricket Club/Wildwood G&CC 85
Marlo Hall/Alec Stern, Green Valley CC 86
John Frampton/Morgan Frampton, Whitemarsh Valley CC 87
Net
Junior Division
Name, club Score
Paul Kennedy/Evan Choy, Shawnee Inn & Golf Resort 68
Matt Mancini/Michael Fedak, Jr., Glenmaura National GC/Spring Ford CC 69
Gregory Buliga/Patrick Laushell, Yardley CC 69
Richard Ogorek/Ryan Bree, Fieldstone GC 69
Michael Gregor/Wade Gregor, Huntingdon Valley CC 69
Buddy Aiken/Jack Mitchell, V, St. Davids GC/Waynesborough CC 70
William Weihenmayer/D.J. Pinciotti, III, Huntingdon Valley CC 70
Robert Olseski/Jeff Kavanagh, Sandy Run CC 71
Carlos Fullerton/Scott Harrington, Brookside CC of Allentown/Moselem Springs GC 71
Jim Fullerton/Max Harrington, Brookside CC of Allentown/Moselem Springs GC 72
Daniel Kilpatrick/Liam Caspar, Medford Village CC/Running Deer GC 72
Scott Storck/Justin Dougherty, Philadelphia Cricket Club 73
J.J. Berenato/Jack St. Amour, Llanerch CC 73
Hugh Farris/Rocco Sciotto, Huntingdon Valley CC 74
Joe Sullivan/Matthew McGettigan, Sandy Run CC 74
John Fleming/Matt Fleming, Spring Mill CC 74
Michael Rose/Daniel Galbreath, Talamore CC/Huntingdon Valley CC 75
Ryan Brennan/Geoff Sheehan, Rolling Green GC/French Creek GC 75
Ron Dirienzi/Nolan Dirienzi, Rolling Green GC 75
Sean Torpey/Mathew Becker, Commonwealth National GC 77
Matthew Teesdale/Nicholas Hano, III, Commonwealth National GC/Aronimink GC 77
Matt Mingione/Nick Mingione, Plymouth CC 77
Matthew Brennan, Sr./Matthew Brennan, Rolling Green GC 77
Peter Chieppor/Jon Chronister, Bent Creek CC 78
Marc Crane/Sam Dalton, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Overbrook GC 79
James Mangano, Jr./James Mangano, III, Manufacturers G&CC 79
Ari Flaisher/Emmett Fox, McCall G&CC 80
Rick Studer/Eric Studer, Makefield Highlands GC 80
Bob Schmalbach/Shane McCullough, Five Ponds GC/Blue Bell CC 80
Stephen Shewbrooks/Archie Filshill, Jr., Huntingdon Valley CC 81
Jeff St. Amour/Jack McClatchy, Llanerch CC 86
Aaron Shatzman/Ben Shatzman, Meadowlands CC 95
Sean Caspar/Fred Caspar, Running Deer GC 96
Philip Repetto/Anthony Repetto, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Penn Oaks GC WD
Matthew Weaver/Brian Weaver, CC of York WD
Seth Melroy/Matthew Taylor, Jeffersonville GC/Gulph Mills GC WD
Junior-Junior Division
Name, club Score
Michael R. Brown, Jr./Darren Nolan, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Talamore CC 65
Nathan Guertler/Adam Warner, Laurel Creek CC/Tavistock CC 66
Ryan Carroll/Henry Fish, Chester Valley GC 69
William Mitchell/Patrick Isztwan, Huntingdon Valley CC 69
John VanDame, Jr./Joshua Ryan, Philadelphia Publinks GA/Philadelphia Junior Tour 73
David Guertler/Matthew Messenger, Laurel Creek CC 73
Douglas Gregor/Michael Vesey, Huntingdon Valley CC 79
Gregory Hurchalla/Charlie Hurchalla, The Springhaven Club 86
Max Mallon/Sean Mallon, GC at Glen Mills 93
Rick Uhr/Tyler Uhr, Philadelphia Publinks GA/GAP Junior Players Club 94
Mixed Division
Name, club Score
Owen Brown/Kelly Brown, Coatesville CC 65
Peter Oppenheimer/Casey Oppenheimer, Whitemarsh Valley CC 68
John Frampton/Morgan Frampton, Whitemarsh Valley CC 70
Marlo Hall/Alec Stern, Green Valley CC 72
Meagan Bonner/Kevin Bonner, Tavistock CC/Talamore CC 75
Sean Grieve/Alyssa Washeleski, Philadelphia Cricket Club/Wildwood G&CC 85