Steve Swartz Defends Delaware Valley Open Title With Win at Deerwood
Westhampton, N.J. – Nearly four months after it’s originally scheduled date, the Delaware Valley Open (DVO) was finally contested at Deerwood Country Club on Tuesday, September 11. With a field consisting of nearly 80 players from across the Philadelphia PGA everyone playing in today’s event was happy to have a long enough break from the rainy weather to play golf.
Playing in the tournament’s first group, Mike Little (Lookaway Golf Club) got things started quickly after posting a score of 5-under (65). Little’s round got off to a slow start with a bogey in his opening hole but recovered quickly to post three birdies, making the turn at 2-under. As he played his way back to the clubhouse Little added four additional birdies against only one bogey to reach the 5-under number.
However, Little’s lead did not last long. Playing only four groups behind Little, Andrew Turner (Sunnybrook Golf Club) also carded a 5-under (65). Like Little, Turner got off to a slow start with bogeys on his first two holes. Fortunately for Turner that is where his troubles ended. Over his last sixteen holes, Turner posted seven birdies bringing his score to 5-under and joining Little at the top of the leaderboard.
Unfortunately for Little and Turner defending champion Steve Swartz (Out Door Country Club) has his sights set on another DVO title. After pars on his first three holes Swartz notched a birdie on the par-3 4th hole. Swartz added two more birdies on the outward nine to make the turn at 3-under. Swartz also added three birdies on the back nine for a total of six, and was also one of only two players (Mike Wheeler) to play bogey-free, giving him an 18-hole score of 6-under (64). Not only did Swartz grab a one shot lead he also managed to tie the competitive course record at Deerwood Country Club at the same time.
Playing just behind Swartz, Eric Kennedy (Overbrook Golf Club) made a charge at the top spot but a late bogey proved too much to overcome. Kennedy was 5-under on the day as played Deerwood’s par-5 17th hole. Kennedy had no blemishes on his card up to that point but an untimely bogey dropped him back to 4-under and despite a birdie on the closing hole he was still one shot short of Swartz’ 6-under score.
After Kennedy, no player in the field managed to get closer than two shots to Swartz and in the end he walked away with his second consecutive Delaware Valley Open crown. The first player to accomplish that feat since Dave Quinn did so in 2011-2012.
“I have been practicing my irons the last couple of weeks in preparation for next week’s Championship”, said Swartz on his round. “It is always nice to get a win considering the caliber of players we have in our Section. This will definitely give me some confidence heading into Concord CC and the Championship. I want to thank all of the sponsors for their support of today’s event.”
A pair of players shared the top spot in the tournament’s senior division. Dave McNabb (Applebrook Golf Club) and Greg Farrow (Deerwood Country Club) both carded scores of 4-under (66). Both players paired five birdies against one bogey en route to a shared senior title. The pair finished two shots ahead of Don Allen (Burlington Country Club) and Brian Kelly (Bucknell Golf Club) who finished with scores of 2-under (68).
Host Professional Greg Farrow also finished in the top spot in the tournament’s super senior division. Farrow’s 4-under number was one shot better than the 3-under (67) put up by Don DeAngelis (Center Square Golf Club).
The Section would like to thank our tournament sponsors Jack Jolly & Son, Golf Pride Grips, Morell Studios as well as the membership and staff of Deerwood Country Club. The Philadelphia PGA returns to action on Monday, September 17 with the Mariniello Tournament of Champions Pro-Am followed by the 97th Philadelphia PGA Professional Championship September 18-20.