|Midwest Golf House||Contact: Casey Richards|
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|Contact: Tim Merrick|
|Contact: Jacob Bomeli|
|For Immediate Release||June 4, 2021|
|CHICAGO DISTRICT SENIORS HEAD TO MERIT CLUB FOR 19TH CDGA SENIOR AM|
|Friday, June 4, 2021 - |
LEMONT, Ill. – More than two years removed from its most recent iteration at Briar Ridge Country Club in Schererville, Indiana, East Peoria’s Tim Sheppard seeks to retain the Charles Morgan Auld Cup when the CDGA Senior Amateur Championship returns for its 19th playing at Merit Club June 7-10.
A field of 75 amateurs age 55 and older return to the Libertyville-based club just six years removed from the 14th CDGA Senior Amateur Championship in 2015, in which medalist Dave Ryan rarely trailed en route to a 3-and-2 defeat of Craig Sopko in the Championship match.
The entire field will play 18 holes of stroke play the morning of Monday, June 7, with the low 16 advancing to match play. The first round of matches will be contested on the morning of Tuesday, June 8 with the Quarterfinals being contested that afternoon. The following day is set to hold the Semifinal matches in the morning before a champion is crowned the morning of Thursday, June 10.
ABOUT THE FIELD
Registration was open to all CDGA members age 55 and older with a USGA Handicap Index® of 10.4 or below. Nearly 200 individuals signed up for the event, with exemptions and two qualifiers earlier this spring at Itasca Country Club and Makray Memorial Golf Club determining the final field.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Joel Hirsch (Highland Park / Lake Shore CC) captured his first and only CDGA Senior Amateur Championship title with his victory in 2006 at Kemper Lakes Golf Club. Hirsch’s historic amateur resume includes two British Senior Amateur victories (1996, 2000), two Illinois State Amateur Championships (1988, 1989), two CDGA Amateur titles (1988,1998), two CDGA Player of the Year awards (1988, 1998) and three CDGA Senior Player of the Year honors (1996, 1998, 2001).
Tom Kearfott (El Paso / El Paso GC) won the 2017 Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship at Senica’s Oak Ridge. Alongside longtime partner Tim Sheppard, Kearfott has also claimed three CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball titles (2016, 2018, 2020) in the event’s five-year history.
Dave Ryan (Taylorville / Illini CC) is a two-time winner of the CDGA Senior Amateur Championship, winning back-to-back editions in 2014 and 2015. Ryan is a seven-time CDGA Senior Player of the Year (2009-2011, 2013-2016), the 2012 CDGA Player of the Year, a two-time winner of the Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship (2015, 2016) and captured the 2016 U.S. Senior Amateur Championship.
Tim Sheppard (East Peoria / Pekin CC) is the reigning CDGA Senior Amateur Champion, following his 2019 triumph at Briar Ridge Country Club in the event’s last rendition. The two-time CDGA Senior Player of the Year (2018, 2019) has won the Illinois State Senior Amateur twice (2018, 2020) and the CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball three times (2016, 2018, 2020), alongside Tom Kearfott.
Ted Pecora (Winnetka / Bob O’Link) finished runner-up in both the CDGA Senior Amateur Championship and Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship in 2018. Pecora has also won two Champion of Champions titles at Park Ridge Country Club (2012, 2019).
Terry Werner (Dyer, Indiana / Briar Ridge CC) won the 2017 edition of the CDGA Senior Amateur Championship at Ridge Country Club before later capturing the CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championship alongside partner John Finnin the same year. The 2017 CDGA Senior Player of the Year has also emerged victorious in four Champion of Champions tournaments at Park Ridge Country Club (2002, 2003, 2007, 2016).
OTHERS TO WATCH
Dirk Anderson (Libertyville / Merit Club) hoisted the Charles Morgan Auld Cup a decade ago when he won the 10th CDGA Senior Amateur Championship at Calumet Country Club.
Vance Antoniou (North Barrington / Butler National GC) emerged victorious in the 15th CDGA Senior Amateur Championship at The Club at Wynstone in 2016.
John Finnin (Frankfort / Olympia Fields CC) teamed with Werner to win the CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championship at Itasca Country Club in 2017.
Brien Gerber (Bolingbrook / Bolingbrook GC) won the CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championship in 2019 with partner Brad Kay.
Brad Kay (Arlington Heights / Ivanhoe Club) is a two-time CDGA champion, with victories in the CDGA Senior Amateur in 2018 and CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball in 2019 alongside Gerber.
Donald Langland (Cary / Randall Oaks GC) is a newcomer in the CDGA Senior Am field after earning medalist honors at the Makray Memorial Golf Club qualifier with a 73.
Opened in 1992, Merit Club sits on the former Stonehenge Farm outside of Libertyville. Bert Getz Sr., the club’s founder, wanted to ensure the Bob Lohmann-designed track was enjoyed by true golfers. The outward nine holes play away from the rising sun in the mornings, and the inward nine turn to the east to prevent sun glare on those important final shots. The course will play to 6,704 yards, with a par of 72 for the championship.
The golf-only facility hosted the 2000 U.S. Women’s Open, which was won by Australian Karrie Webb, the first of her two consecutive U.S. Women’s Open titles. Merit Club also played host to the 2016 International Crown, a biennial match play event organized by the LPGA. Featuring teams of four players from eight countries, the United States team of Lexi Thompson, Stacy Lewis, Gerina Piller and Cristie Kerr emerged victorious.
|Chicago District Golf Association|
The Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) is authorized by the United States Golf Association (USGA) as the governing body for amateur golf in our region. The CDGA is a membership organization consisting of nearly 90,000 individual golfers and 400 clubs in Illinois and parts of Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. Golfers receive member offers, a Handicap Index® from the USGA® and competitive playing opportunities, while clubs receive USGA rating and measuring services, turfgrass diagnostics and educational seminars. Midwest Golf House and the Bob Berry Sunshine Course are home to the CDGA Foundation, which annually serves more than 1,000 individuals with special needs and wounded veterans while also bringing playing opportunities to youth golfers. Founded on March 18, 1914, the CDGA is one of the largest and oldest golf associations in the United States.
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