Bob Lennon, Zac Oakley Lead 102nd Philadelphia PGA Professional Championship Following Opening Round
Clarks Summit, Pa.. (September 11, 2023) — As the Country Club of Scranton and Elmhurst Country Club both host their first-ever Philadelphia PGA Professional Championship, PGA Members Bob Lennon of Wilmington (Del.) Country Club and Zac Oakley of Bidermann Golf Club in Wilmington, Del., lead the championship entering the second round.
Both Lennon and Oakley finished with 5-under-par 65s at Elmhurst C.C., and lead two-time (2019, 2020) Philadelphia PGA Professional Champion Alex Knoll, Glen Brook G.C., and Rob Shuey, Colonial Golf & Tennis Club, by one stroke. The trio of Steve Sanderson, Saucon Valley C.C.; 2018 Champion Billy Stewart, Union League Liberty Hill; and Michael Meisenzahl, Little Mill C.C.; round out the top five at 3-under-par. Defending champion Brian Bergstol, Shawnee Inn & Golf Resort, is tied for 18th at even par.
“I made a bunch of birdies during the day,” Lennon said discussing his first round. “I putted realtoday, and I kept the ball out of the heavy rough.”
Oakley said that while he hit a lot of greens, the putting surfaces were tricky, claiming to have focused a lot on speed.
“I know there’s no flat putts [at C.C. of Scranton], so I hope to hit a lot of greens, and will practice five and six-foot putts headed into the second round,” said Oakley.
Scranton played significantly more difficult than Elmhurst in the opening round, with their scoring averages finishing at 77.93 and 75.30, respectively. Scranton’s course is longer than Elmhurst, and seemingly played even longer due to damp conditions from recent storms. Furthermore, Scranton’s fabled and undulating Walter Travis-designed greens proved to be a great test for the field during the first round.
Lennon earned his first-ever Philadelphia PGA Section victory earlier this summer at the Conestoga Classic, while Oakley, who is no stranger to the Section’s winner’s circle, won his first title of the season at the 2023 Philadelphia Assistant PGA Professional Championship.
One-hundred-thirty of the Philadelphia PGA Section’s best players are competing for the William B. Packer Trophy and a berth into the 2024 PGA Professional Championship, April 25-27, at Fields Ranch at PGA Frisco in Texas. From there, PGA Members from the 41 PGA Sections will compete to join the Corebridge Financial PGA Team and earn a berth into the 2024 PGA Championship on May 13-19, at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Ky.
The second round continues tomorrow, Tuesday, September 12 at 8:00 a.m. at both the C.C. of Scranton and Elmhurst C.C. The low 60 players and ties will advance to the final round on Wednesday, September 13 at the C.C. of Scranton. Follow the action via our live scoring by visiting golfgenius.com/pages/4010280. For more information on the championship, including the week’s schedule, pairings, and more, visit the championship’s official e-publication. Members of the media are welcome onsite to cover the championship.
To view the full 102nd Philadelphia PGA Professional Championship leaderboard, click here.
The 102nd Philadelphia PGA Professional Championship is presented by Club Car, Corebridge Financial, and Rolex, and is supported by Golf Channel, Gallagher, the PGA Tour, Titleist, FootJoy, Callaway, Nike, TaylorMade Golf, and SCNS Sports Foods. The Philadelphia PGA Section and its PGA Professionals thank our hosts, the Country Club of Scranton and Elmhurst Country Club, its members, management, host PGA Professionals, and staff, as well as our partners, as the event would not have been possible without their support.
About the Philadelphia PGA Section
The Philadelphia PGA Section, covering eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and Delaware, is one of 41 geographical managing entities of the PGA of America. This Section manages nearly 900 PGA Members and Associates who are employed at over 590 golf facilities in our region.
Contact: Matt Frey, PGA, Communications Director, firstname.lastname@example.org