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CHICAGO DISTRICT GOLF ASSOCIATION

For Everyone Who Plays the Game

Midwest Golf House Contact: Casey Richards
11855 Archer Avenue (630) 685-2324
Lemont, IL 60439 crichards@cdga.org
Contact: Tim Merrick
(630) 685-2302
tmerrick@cdga.org
Contact: Jacob Bomeli
(630) 685-2345
jbomeli@cdga.org
 
For Immediate ReleaseSeptember 10, 2021
 
SHEPPARD SEEKS SECOND STRAIGHT STATE SENIOR AT THE PRESERVE AT OAK MEADOWS 
 
Friday, September 10, 2021 -

LEMONT, Ill. - The state’s top amateur golfers age 55 and up will descend upon Addison’s The Preserve at Oak Meadows for the 35th Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship Sept. 13-15. The Earl R. Liff Trophy will be awarded to the victor of the event, which was first contested at Pine Meadow Golf Course in 1987.

FORMAT

The entire 75-golfer field will play 18 holes of stroke play on both Monday, Sept. 13 and Tuesday, Sept. 14. Low super senior honors (65 and older) will be awarded following Tuesday’s second round. The low 35 and ties will then advance to the 18-hole finale on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

ABOUT THE FIELD

A total of 203 individuals registered for the event, which was open to Illinois residents age 55 and up with an official USGA Handicap Index® of 10.4 or below. The field for The Preserve at Oak Meadows was determined through 24 exemptions and three qualifiers held at Effingham Country Club, Glenwoodie Golf Club and Midlane Country Club in August.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Brad Kay is a two-time CDGA-administered event champion, winning the 2018 CDGA Senior Amateur and 2019 CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championships. A model of consistency on the senior circuit in the Chicago District, Kay has finished in the top seven in each of the last three State Senior Championships.

Tom Kearfott is a regular within the winner’s circle at CDGA-administered senior events. The now 60-year-old emerged victoriously in the 2017 playing of this event as well as three CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championships (2016, ‘18 and ‘20).

Jeff Ott won the 2019 Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship at Westmoreland Country Club. Defending his title a year ago, Ott finished T6 at Peoria’s Mt. Hawley Country Club.

Tim Sheppard is a two-time and reigning champion of the Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship, having also won in 2018. A stalwart among the Chicago District’s senior golfers, Sheppard has won seven of 13 CDGA-administered senior events he has participated in including the 2016, 2018 and 2020 CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championships and the 2019 and 2021 CDGA Senior Amateurs.

Mark Small comes to The Preserve at Oak Meadows fresh off reaching match play in the 2021 U.S. Senior Amateur Championship at Country Club of Detroit. The 1996 Illinois State Amateur champion also finished as a semifinalist in the 2021 CDGA Senior Am.

John Vernasco is a relative newcomer to CDGA-administered events. The Libertyville native enters his first Illinois State Senior Am in great form, however, after finishing runner-up to Sheppard in the 2021 CDGA Senior Amateur Championship.

OTHERS TO WATCH

Vance Antoniou won the 2016 CDGA Senior Amateur Championship at The Club at Wynstone in North Barrington.

Mark Esposito is a two-time Illinois State Mid-Am champion with wins in 1999 and 2006.

David Feder played with Sheppard in the final group at the 2020 Illinois State Senior Am and finished as just one of three players under par.

Scott Immekus finished as the medalist in the Aug. 27 qualifier at Glenwoodie GC with a 1-over round of 73.

Mike Karney has made deep runs in back-to-back CDGA four-ball events, finishing as a semifinalist in the 2021 CDGA Amateur Four-Ball Championship and runner-up in the 2020 CDGA Senior Amateur Four-Ball Championship.

Michael McNeely finished the Aug. 17 qualifier at Effingham CC as a co-medalist following a 2-over round of 74.

Ted Pecora was the overall gross champion in the 2020 CDGA Super Senior Championship at Glenview Park Golf Club.

Alan Pondel earned medalist honors at the Aug. 31 qualifier at Midlane CC following an even-par 71.

Tom Portner was a co-medalist at the Effingham Country Club qualifier on Aug. 17.

Ed Whitaker won the 2014 Illinois State Senior Amateur Championship at The Grove Country Club.

THE PRESERVE AT OAK MEADOWS

After its initial opening in 1923 under the name Elmhurst Country Club, The Preserve at Oak Meadows underwent extensive renovations by golf course architect Greg Martin from 2015-2017 to mitigate the course’s flooding issues and transform the 27-hole layout into an 18-hole championship track. Since fully re-opening in 2018, the course has received rave reviews including “Renovation of the Year” from Golf Inc. Now, set to host its first CDGA-administered championship, The Preserve at Oak Meadows will play to a par of 72 at 6,611 yards.

LAST YEAR’S CHAMPIONSHIP

Host to seven Illinois State Amateur Championships, Peoria’s Mt. Hawley Country Club welcomed the state’s top seniors to its track a year ago. Staying close to home, East Peoria’s Tim Sheppard emerged victoriously for the second time in the last three years. Entering the day three strokes ahead of the field, Sheppard’s final-round 70 was more than enough for the then 59-year-old to stave off the talented group of seniors. Four-time event champion Dave Ryan finished in second at three-under par.

 
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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