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Overbrook’s McFadden, CNGC’s Sawyer nab Senior 27-Hole Challenge

  ROYERSFORD, Pa. – Francis McFadden of Overbrook GC and Terrence Sawyer of Commonwealth National GC carded a tremendous 5-under-par 139 to triumph in Thursday’s Senior 27-Hole Challenge at Spring Ford CC (par 72, 6,465 yards).

  Enduring brutally hot temperatures and a grueling grind of golf, McFadden, of Newtown Square, Pa., and Sawyer, of Yardley, Pa., jockeyed for position early and solidified their play during the event’s final leg to earn a one-stroke victory.

  “We really played great in the select drive/alternate shot,” McFadden said. “Terry made huge putts.”

  Sawyer, 62, and McFadden, 60, posted three birdies in the aforementioned segment. On No. 12 (par 4, 358 yards), both powered their drives to receive friendly yardages into the green. Electing to use Sawyer’s tee shot, McFadden stuck a sand wedge 90 yards to 10 feet. His partner completed the uphill birdie putt. The duo fired back-to-back birdies on Nos. 15 (par 5, 490 yards) and 16 (par 3, 196 yards). After Sawyer hit a “miraculous second shot” on No. 15, McFadden knocked a lob wedge 55 yards to 12 feet.

  “We could’ve made six there in a heartbeat,” Sawyer said.

  Sawyer struck his 4-utility to 15 feet on No. 13, and McFadden executed the under-par chance.

  “I didn’t think it was going to get there,” McFadden said.

  “He hit a great putt. It was in all of the way,” Sawyer added.

  After the first 18 holes, McFadden and Sawyer stood two strokes off the lead. The pair truly mastered its play and ironed out any wrinkles in the aggregate portion.

  “He didn’t miss a golf shot,” Sawyer, a member of the Association’s Executive Committee, said of his partner.

  One of those accurate golf shots occurred on the dogleg left par 4, 393-yard 2nd hole. McFadden smacked his sand wedge 99 yards and sunk a straightaway 12-footer for birdie. Sawyer nearly aced the par 3, 139-yard 4th hole with a 9-iron that landed within inches of the cup. McFadden and Sawyer redeemed a tough bogey on No. 5 (par 5, 521 yards) by posting a birdie on No. 6 (par 4, 312 yards). The team burst to the top of the leaderboard after McFadden carded a sensational eagle on the uphill par 5, 525-yard 9th hole. His second shot fell just shy of the green, and the rest is history.

  “He drove it just short of the collar and pitched it into the hill and it ran in like a putt,” Sawyer said of the eagle. “It ran in on the last roll.” Sawyer converted a 12-footer for par to ensure the eagle remained intact on the scorecard.

  Both McFadden and Sawyer, along with brothers Andy and Raymond Thompson of Overbrook GC, won last year’s Senior Four-Man Team at Meadowlands CC. The two will now set their sights on the Association’s Senior Amateur Championship, set for Sept. 7-8 at Sunnybrook GC.

  “It was great playing with Tommy (Bartolacci, Jr. of Saucon Valley CC) and Ray (Thompson of Overbrook GC) because you got something to go on,” Sawyer said.

  Super Senior

  Pine Valley GC’s O. Gordon Brewer, Jr. and Robert Housen compiled a 4-over-par 148 to take the Super Senior Division.

  “As I said to Bob earlier, winning never gets old,” Brewer, of Pine Valley, N.J. said.

  “And I told him old people can still win,” Housen, of Brielle, N.J., added.

  Brewer, 73, and Housen, 72, posted two birdies in the aggregate portion. Brewer pierced his pitching wedge to 15 feet on No. 4. Housen returned the red figure favor by whacking his wedge 70 yards to six feet on No. 5. The group’s only stumble, or more apprpriately, catastrophe, came in the select drive/alternate shot segment. Housen detailed a sequence of traumatic events that led to a quadruple bogey on No. 8.

  “Both of us drove it through the fairway and into the woods,” he said. “I proceeded to it out of the woods, but it hit a root and went backwards further into the woods. He chips out, and I chip it into the pond.”

  “Then we one-putted for eight,” Brewer added.

  The Senior 27-Hole Challenge replaced the Senior Net Championship on the tournament schedule in 2008. An event for players 55 years of age and older, the Senior 27-Hole Challenge is a gross event consisting of three nine-hole stipulated rounds in three different formats: better-ball of partners, selective drive — alternate shot and aggregate. The tournament is open to seniors with a USGA Handicap Index of 7.0 or lower. Super-Seniors must have a USGA Handicap Index of 12.0 or less.

Senior Division
Name, club Rd. 1 Rd. 2 Rd. 3 Total
Francis McFadden/Terry Sawyer, Overbrook GC/Commonwealth National GC 34 34 71 139
Gary Daniels/Robin McCool, Saucon Valley CC 33 33 74 140
Thomas Bartolacci, Jr./Ray Thompson, Mercer Oaks GC/Overbrook GC 32 35 74 141
Paul  Koelling/Mike Miklinevich, Greate Bay CC 33 40 75 148
Michael Domenick/James Muller, Phoenixville CC/Manufacturers G&CC 31 39 80 150
James Prendergast/Richard Custer, Brookside CC 35 36 79 150
Donald Ashley/Mark Shuman, Philadelphia CC/Whitford CC 35 42 73 150
Tim Simmons/John Gonsior, Limekiln GC 34 42 75 151
Matthew Bellis/Michael Rose, Commonwealth National GC/Philmont CC 34 38 79 151
Craig Scott/David Brookreson, Huntingdon Valley CC 35 39 77 151
Charles Jones/Michael Nilon, Blue Bell CC/Philadelphia CC 35 36 80 151
Richard Green/Vince Yost, Cedarbrook CC 34 39 79 152
William March/Mark Szilagyi, Spring Ford CC/Brookside CC 35 39 79 153
Thomas Mallouk/Gregory Gaul, Lookaway GC/Merion GC 33 38 85 156
Thomas Coffey, III/Thomas O’Rourke, Chester Valley GC 35 36 86 157
Ken Gaskill/Jon Mabry, Rancocas GC/Moorestown Field Club 36 38 83 157
John Patton/David Lovitz, Little Mill CC/Lu Lu CC 34 40 85 159
Thomas Stitt/Dave Schindler, Northampton CC 35 40 84 159
Joseph Milutis/Gordon Bennett, Northampton CC 37 40 83 160
Stan Zabytko/Michael Sofranko, Loch Nairn GC 35 42 85 162
Dennis Perna/Frank Kunze, Spring Ford CC 37 40 85 162
Bruce Jackson/Bud Souder, Spring Ford CC 36 40 88 164
Leonard DiDomenilo/Joseph Major, Brookside CC 37 37 90 164
Super-Senior Division
Name, Club Rd. 1 Rd. 2 Rd. 3 Total
O. Gordon Brewer, Jr./Robert Housen, Pine Valley GC 34 39 75 148
King Knox/James Sherratt, Lancaster CC/Old York Road CC 35 38 79 152
Charles McClaskey/Richard Smith, Back Creek GC/Philadelphia CC 35 37 84 156
Jack Donnelly/Bill Weinfeld, Bensalem Township CC/JC Melrose CC 33 38 88 159
John Ayres/David Jordan, Woodcrest CC/Sakima CC 36 39 84 159
Louis Pace/Robert Proto, Medford Village CC/Little Mill CC 36 39 84 159
Robert Schiller/Herbert Gordon, Old York Road CC/Doylestown CC 40 39 80 159
Joseph Maxwell/Curt Fromal, Hartefeld National/The Springhaven Club 35 41 84 160
Peter Stanley/Clay von Seldeneck, Sunnybrook GC 37 39 86 162
John Holsten/Michael Higgins, Aronimink GC 38 40 85 163
Formats (in order): Better-Ball; Select Drive-Alternate Shot; Aggregate