Royersford, Pa. – On Tuesday, June 13, Spring Ford Country Club played host to the Jack Jolly / Golf Pride Championship, the season’s seventh point’s event in the race for the Omega Player of the Year presented by Haverford Trust. The Jack Jolly / Golf Pride Championship was played as an individual stroke play event and featured a field of 83 PGA Professionals which included 28 players from the Philadelphia Assistants’ Organization (PAO) who were competing in the PAO event which was held in conjunction with today’s Championship. As a note some PAO members were competing in both of the day’s tournaments.
Players competing in today’s tournament had to deal with more than the challenging Spring Ford layout as temperatures crept into the mid-90s proving that summer is truly less than a week away. However, playing in the tournament’s first pairing, Brett Melton (Radley Run Country Club) showed that good scores were available in spite of the difficult conditions. Melton posted four birdies through 14 holes before adding a fifth on the par 4, 17th but bogeys on holes 15, 16 and 18 dropped Melton to 2-under (70) for the day and he would be forced to watch the leaderboard.
Unfortunately, not far behind Melton, Jordan Gibbs (Gulph Mills Golf Club) would end the wait for Melton after just three groups, by finishing at 3-under (69). Gibbs carded one birdie on his outward nine to make the turn at 1-under but a bogey on the par 4, 10th, his lone blemish on the day, quickly dropped him back to even par. Gibbs would post three additional birdies as he made his way back into the clubhouse to take the 1-shot lead. Needing to head back to work at Gulph Mills, Gibbs would also keep a close watch on the tournament leaderboard.
It looked as though Gibbs lead would hold as players came close but faded as they came down the stretch. However, one player who was up to the challenge was seasoned tournament veteran Stu Ingraham (M Golf Range). Fresh off of qualifying for the US Senior Open, Ingraham played a near perfect round of golf carding three birdies along the way to finish tied with Gibbs at 3-under (69). At the end of the day it came down to a sudden-death playoff between Ingraham and Gibbs. Gibbs went first hitting it far right, while Ingraham’s drive found the end of the fairway. Both Gibbs and Ingraham found the green with their second shot giving both a look at birdie. Putting first, Ingraham was able to make his 13’ putt forcing Gibbs to do the same with his 10 footer. Despite his best effort, Gibbs’ putt just missed giving Ingraham the win.
“This win means so much to me especially this year,” said Ingraham on his win. “I met Dennis McGugan in 1991 and he was always a great friend to me. To capture the title after we lost such a great person is something I will never forget.”
All was not lost for Gibbs as he did take home the top prize in the PAO Jack Jolly / Golf Pride Championship, his first PAO win of the 2017 season. Ingraham would also clinch a win in the senior division posting a 2-shot win over Dave Quinn (Philmont Country Club) who finished with a 1-under (71).
Special congratulations go out to Joe Kogelman (GolfTEC – Moorestown) who carded his first hole-in-one in tournament play. Kogelman used an 8-iron on the par 3, 170 yards long 14th hole to accomplish the feat.
The Section would like to thank our tournament sponsors, Jack Jolly & Son and Golf Pride Grips who came out to today’s event. The Philadelphia PGA will return to action on Monday, June 26 at Biderman Country Club in Wilmington, Delaware for the Connelly Club / Head Pro Championship.