Westchester has been an inspiring place for Mark Reilly ever since he was eight and watched his father Mike, a Long Island club pro, play in the 2003 Buick Classic at Westchester Country Club in Harrison. This past week, at the nearby Apawamis Club in Rye, Mark used that inspiration to win the Metropolitan Junior PGA Championship.
The younger Reilly, having just finished a championship career at St. John the Baptist High School, shot 5 over through two rounds. He and Rachel Corry of Ridgefield, Ct., the girls division winner, qualified for the National Junior PGA championship at Trump National in Potomac Falls, Va. July 30.
Mike was proud to reverse roles: watching his son play in Westchester. He remembered that Ben Hogan once called Apawamis "the toughest short course I have ever played." This fall, Mark will play for the University of Richmond.
PGA office in New York The PGA of America is opening an office in the New York area, reinforcing its roots as it prepares to celebrate its centennial in 2016. The association, which represents teaching professionals and hosts the PGA Championship, was formed at the Hotel Martinique in Manhattan (now the Radisson Martinique) on April 10, 1916. The organization is based in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., but will establish additional headquarters in Elmsford, in the same building that houses the Met PGA and Metropolitan Golf Association offices.
"I think it speaks well to the dynamics of our area golf associations and the fact that we are together, sharing offices and resources in some cases, and a commitment to serve the game," said Charlie Robson, executive director of the Met PGA. "Their presence can only add to that."
The Met PGA's big event, the New York State Open, will be at Bethpage Black July 23-25. It is open to the public and admission is free.
One hole, two aces
There is nothing easy about the third hole at the Woodmere Club. As Dave Goldman, the assistant pro shop manager, said it requires a carry over water. And there is no magical bowl or slope in the green's contour that makes a ball roll in one specific direction. It was just one of those things when two golfers had holes-in-one on that same hole on the same day recently (from separate tees). Jason Eisenman, playing from 136 yards, aced it with a 9-iron. Merik Aaron, playing from the 112-yard markers, also used a 9-iron for a 1.
People who attended the U.S. Women's Open in Southampton last week generally raved about the overall ambience. They agreed on the course's character and the players' skill. Some spectators did point out that, with the extremely wide fairways, fans were sometimes far from the action, which is something that can be worked on for the next major at Sebonack, whenever that is.