Kennedy Captures Callaway Golf TPD Championship

On a sun-splashed spring day the Philadelphia PGA held their season-opening event, The Callaway Golf TPD Championship. The tournament serves as the first event in the chase for the Omega Player of the Year presented by The Haverford Trust Company.

More than 120 Philadelphia PGA Professionals, all members of the Section’s Tournament Players Division (TPD), traveled to Commonwealth National Golf Club for today’s event. The TPD Championship was played as a modified stableford tournament with players earning 1 point for any par, 3 points for birdies, 6 points for eagles, 9 points for double eagles, and -1 point for any bogey or worse.

Playing in the tournament’s morning wave, one competitor proved too much for the competition. Eric Kennedy (Overbrook Golf Club) made his way around the 6700 yards long golf course without a blemish adding three birdies along the way to finish in solo first place with a total of 24-points. Kennedy finished two shots clear of second place finisher Bill Sautter (Philadelphia Cricket Club) and four shots ahead of third place finisher and Section newcomer Rick LeBeau (Gulph Mills Golf Club) who totaled 20 points. With this being the season’s first points event Kennedy will begin the year in first place on the Omega Player of the Year presented by Haverford Trust Co standings with his win.

“It is an honor to win this tournament for the second time (2012). In fact this is the only Philadelphia PGA event I’ve won,” said tournament champion Kennedy. “I want to thank Patrick Shine and the members of Commonwealth National for hosting us at such an outstanding facility. I also want to thank Laura Manchester and Kevin Martin from Callaway Golf for supporting this great event.’

Despite falling two points short to Eric Kennedy, Bill Sautter did manage to claim the low senior honors with his 22 points. Sautter carded four birdies (3 points each) against two bogeys (-1 point) while carding pars on the remaining holes to finish 4-shots clear of second place finisher Bob Fritz (Manufacturers G&CC). Like Kennedy, Sautter will take the early lead on the Robert “Skee” Riegel Senior Player of the Year points list.

The Philadelphia Section would like to thank our Title sponsor Callaway Golf and our Section representative Laura Manchester and Kevin Martin as well as our presenting sponsor the PGA Tour. The next event on the tournament schedule is the Connelly Cup – Head Pro Championship being held on May 2nd at Fieldstone Golf Club.

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1    Eric Kennedy        35-33--68 24  
2    Bill Sautter        33-36--69 22  
3    Rick LeBeau         34-36--70 20  
T4   Eric McNamee        38-34--72 18  
T4   Michael Little      36-35--71 18  
T4   Bob Fritz           37-34--71 18  
7    Dave McNabb         37-35--72 17  
T8   Eddie Perrino       36-36--72 16  
T8   George Forster      36-36--72 16  
T8   Carson Solien       38-34--72 16  
T8   Rich Steinmetz      34-38--72 16  
T8   Dave Pagett         38-34--72 16  
T8   Steve Swartz        37-35--72 16  
T8   Kevin Kraft         35-37--72 16  
T8   Curtis Kirkpatrick  35-37--72 16  
T8   Bertus Wessels      35-37--72 16

Spring Meeting to Feature Keynote Speaker Rear Admiral Brad Williamson


Rear Adm. Brad Williamson is a native of Levittown, Pennsylvania. He is a 1985 graduate of the United States Naval Academy. He received a Master of Science degree in National Security Strategy from the National War College in 2001.

His career as a surface warfare officer includes assignments on USS Estocin (FFG 15), USS Vandegrift (FFG 48), and as executive officer on USS Vicksburg (CG 69). He commanded USS Thunderbolt (PC 12), USS Porter (DDG 78), and Destroyer Squadron 2. He also served as chief of staff, Carrier Strike Group 2/Theodore Roosevelt Strike Group; and as chief of staff, Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO. His most recent deployment was as the Commander, Standing NATO Maritime Group 2.

Ashore, he served as graduate education and service college placement officer; as future schedules officer on the staff of Commander, Naval Surface Forces Atlantic; as lead staff analyst in the Office of Program Analysis and Evaluation (PA&E) for the Cost of War (COW) Supplemental on the staff of the Secretary of Defense; as an executive assistant in OPNAV N81 (Naval Assessments) and OPNAV N86 (Surface Warfare), and as executive assistant to the Deputy Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command.

Williamson participated in Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm, and has conducted numerous operational exercises and missions in Europe, Africa, and South America.

His decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit (5 awards), Defense Meritorious Service Medal, Meritorious Service Medal (2 awards), Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal (4 awards), Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, and various campaign, unit, and service awards.

Williamson has served as the Commandant, Joint Forces Staff College since July 2015.  Continue reading

Philadelphia PGA Spring Meeting

The Philadelphia PGA will kick-off their 2016 campaign with the annual Spring Meeting and Pro-Pro Scramble. The meeting will be held at Whitemarsh Valley Country Club. In addition to conducting the business at hand, special keynote speaker Rear Admiral, Brad Williamson will present on the topic of Leadership and Selfless Service.

More Information

Mental Game

Mike Dynda, PGA – Blue Bell Country Club

This tip is for those of you who are typically having trouble breaking 100 or even 90 and have not seen improvement in your scores in recent seasons, and are probably not going to invest in professional instruction.
First thing, even if you have limited time and/or resources for professional instruction, contact your local PGA Professional and schedule a 9 hole course management session.  Maybe a young assistant who is a good player will be more accessible to a busy successful teacher.
It is my observation that most bogey golfers and higher could shoot a much lower score just by simply making better decisions.  Most golfers in this category make on course decisions based on their best ever shot with the club in hand, not taking into account the risk/reward associated with the shot.
Second thing, if you are not going to seek professional instruction, I’d recommend you do most everything the opposite of what you are currently doing.  What I mean by that is:  golf is counter-intuitive, it’s a game of opposites…………Remember the Seinfeld episode where George said  ” If everyone one of my normal instincts is wrong, I’ll do just the opposite”  So do yourself a favor and DO THE OPPOSITE!
NO, do yourself a favor and schedule at least 1 hour of professional instruction from your local PGA Professional.

Enjoy the Challenge!!!!!!!!!

Mike Dynda
PGA Teaching Professional
Blue Bell Country Club
2005 Philadelphia Section PGA Teacher of the Year
Head Golf Coach
Drexel University
drexeldragons.comCell (610)


Bob Thatcher, PGA – Olde Masters Golf Club

Keeping students interested and taking more lessons.
In order to keep and maintain a constant flow of lessons the instructor must provide enthusiasm for the student and their progress. He must show genuine understanding for their unique problems in the learning process. Student feedback is required for a team effort approach to be effective. Keep track of each student’s progress from day one. Give them a “strategy for improvement” road map so they have an idea of where they are going and how you can plan to help them get there. Establish realistic goals both long and short term. Getting them to buy into the idea of setting aside time to practice may be the most important item for their ultimate success.

In order to keep my students coming back I have instituted several stratagem that have proved effective:

  1. I offer a buy six lessons and pay for five package
  2. I offer a practice ball plan that encourages the students to practice.
  3. I always work around the green for sand, chipping, putting and other greenside areas as a positive reinforcing of the scoring aspect of the game.
  4. Using video enhances the process and shows the student that you are able to offer the needed training tools to make them better.
  5. I have a tickler file on all students to follow up on their progress even in the off season via email and phone if needed.
  6.  I have each student called in early spring in order to get them back in the swing of golf by promoting fresher lessons.


“The Sand Shot” – Bob Thatcher, PGA – Olde Master’s Golf Club

The basic sand shot requires rhythm, timing, balance, and proper technique. It is broken down in three main areas: address, takeaway and downswing/follow through.


  1. Open stance aimed well left of the intended target – approximately 10 to 15 degrees. The hips should be slightly open.
  2. The ball is played at the left instep.
  3. Weight is placed toward the left foot- distributions about 65/35.
  4. The club face is open aiming along the intended target line.
  5. Anchor feet to prevent slipping.
  6. Hands are forward of the ball.


  1. The club is taken back along the intended target line (on an inside path).
  2. The hands hinge or cock early.
  3. You must take a fall, evenly paced, backswing.
  4. Your head and eyes must remain over the ball. Your eyes focused on the spot just behind the ball.
  5. No appreciable weight shift should take place.
  6. At the top of the swing, your hands should be relaxed and motionless – ready for the downswing.


  1. Your weight should be toward the left foot.
  2. Hands and arm should be relaxed.
  3. A sensation of your hands falling or pulling should be felt. This pulling should be along the foot line thus allowing the open club face to slide under and across the ball.
  4. Remain focused on the spot of impact just behind the ball (1 to 2 inches)
  5. Try to maintain an even tempo.
  6. Permit the body to turn and face the target in an even and flowing manner. (Do no help the club) (7) This even movement of the body to the ball should help to eliminate deceleration.

This secret of good sand play is sound technique, good instruction, lots of practice, and a real desire to improve. Should you need more help I suggest you contact your local PGA Professional.

Compliments of Bob Thatcher and Staff at Olde Masters Golf Club.