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May 26, 2016

Matt Finger (left) of DuPont Country Club and Michael R. Brown, Jr. of Philadelphia Publinks GA
tied for second in the 33rd Middle-Amateur Championship.

SVCC’s Matt Mattare wins Middle-Amateur in playoff

  PAOLI, Pa.–Matthew Mattare’s quest for a Major trophy finally ended at the pot of gold the Notre Dame alum has longingly sought. Mattare, of Saucon Valley Country Club, outlasted Michael R. Brown, Jr. of Philadelphia Publinks GA and Matt Finger of DuPont Country Club in a four-hole aggregate playoff for the 33rd Middle-Amateur Championship presented by Callaway Golf on Thursday at Waynesborough Country Club (par 71, 6,859 yards). Mattare finished the playoff with 14 strokes; Brown had 15 and Finger had 16.

| Scorecards | History | Notebook | Notebook | Day 2 photos | Day 1 recap |
Matthew Mattare interview | Michael R. Brown, Jr. interview | Matt Finger interview |

  “Finally. As excited as I am, I am more relieved than anything,” said Mattare, 30, of Jersey City, N.J. “It’s been eight years since the Patterson [Cup] where I came close and Glenn [Smeraglio] edged me out in the end. It’s been a long trip to get here. And I’m glad I arrived.”

  Mattare finished second to Smeraglio in the 2008 Joseph H. Patterson Cup when the 36-hole event was split between St. Davids Golf Club and Waynesborough. Mattare fired a first-round 67 at Waynesborough that year.

  “It was good to be back here,” said Mattare, who works in wealth management for Morgan Stanley.

  The leaderboard was a revolving door all day, but looked closed with Finger holding a one-stroke edge standing on the reachable 18th (par 5, 527 yards) tee. Brown and Mattare had already posted their 1-over-par 143 totals for the two days and Finger, the co-first-round leader, needed just a par to secure the win. His drive caught the right rough though, and his third shot, an 8-iron from 151 yards, landed 60 feet short and right of the hole.

  “I didn’t really know where I stood going to 18 but I thought I had a one-shot lead,” said Finger, 38, of Woolwich Township, N.J. “I took 3-wood off the tee and put it in the right rough. I hit a 5-iron out. And then I hit an 8-iron into the green, which I thought was good, but it kind of shot up and just got stuck in the wind. I had four feet left. I played it a left edge putt and pulled it. I didn’t finish. I don’t know what else to say. That one is going to hurt.”

  The playoff rotation was Nos. 1-4-8-9.

  All three players parred No. 1 (par 4, 367 yards) in good order before Finger resuscitated his shocked system with a birdie on No. 4 (par 3, 189 yards). He ripped a 6-iron to 12 feet and drained the putt. His two opponents made par to fall a shot back.

  On No. 8 (par 4, 371 yards), Finger, who placed a premium on driving accuracy all week, strayed into trouble off the tee similar to the closing hole. His 2-iron tee shot found the left rough, obscured from the green by a tree. His second shot then rolled into a greenside bunker. He eventually made five. Mattare, on the other hand, stated his title intentions loudly. His 108-yard lob wedge cozied up to three feet.

  “As soon as it left the club I knew it was perfect,” said Mattare.

  Brown, 43, of Maple Shade, N.J., made a miraculous up-and-down after missing the green left, draining a 30-foot putt for par. Mattare sank his short birdie and now headed to No. 9 (par 4, 438 yards) one stroke clear.

  Needing one more timely swing, Mattare rocketed a drive center-cut.

  “On every shot I was saying ‘Be decisive. Don’t be tentative.’ Yesterday, on the first nine it was just tentative strokes. I kept trying to steer it with my irons. Steer it with the driver. I got up on No. 2, which was my 11th hole, and I had a five-footer for birdie and just waved at it. I said ‘Start being decisive,’” said Mattare. “From that point forward before every single shot I said ‘Be decisive.’ And that’s exactly what I did.”

  Mattare, left with 138 yards to the hole, launched a pitching wedge to the green that rolled out to 25 feet. Brown, in the right rough, smacked a fantastic 9-iron from 151 yards to 30 feet on the same line as Mattare. Finger missed his approach left and then chipped long. Brown’s birdie scooted by leaving Mattare needing only a two-putt for the win, which he did.

  “Philly is my home. These are the most important tournaments of the year to me,” said Mattare, who was the medalist in the 2013 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship. “I have a great group of friends down here. It means everything. You look at all the guys who have won over the last couple of years, a bunch of friends like Jeff Osberg, Michael McDermott and John Brennan, it’s great to join their little club.”

  It is Mattare’s first Golf Association of Philadelphia Major victory.

  “I had no expectations there would be a playoff,” said Brown. “I was pretty confident the number would be even. I needed three or four things to happen for 1 over to be the number and they did. I backed into that playoff for sure. I was happy to have another chance.”

  Defending champion Scott McNeil of Bala Golf Club carded rounds of 78 and 77 to tie for 44th place.

  At various points throughout the day, seven different players held the lead. A bit of a breeze and championship greens kept the field compact.

Callaway Golf
Callaway Golf was founded in 1982 by the late Ely Callaway, a visionary entrepreneur who operated under a simple but profound business promise: Deliver Demonstrably Superior, Pleasingly Different products and services. That philosophy turned what was originally a boutique manufacturer of high-quality wedges and putters into the world's largest maker of premium, performance golf products. The Callaway mission and vision has remained the same; we passionately pursue advanced, innovative technologies that help golfers of all abilities find more enjoyment from the game. Under the Callaway and Odyssey brands, Callaway manufactures and sells golf clubs and golf balls, and sells golf apparel, footwear and accessories in more than 110 countries worldwide.

Golf Association of Philadelphia
Founded in 1897, the Golf Association of Philadelphia (GAP) is the oldest regional golf association in the United States and serves as the principal ruling body of amateur golf in its region. Its 151 Member Clubs and 57,000 individual members are spread across parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland. As Philadelphia’s Most Trusted Source of Golf Information, the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.

Name, club

R1-R2–Total

*Matthew Mattare, Saucon Valley Country Club

71-72–143

Michael R. Brown, Jr., Philadelphia Publinks GA

73-70–143

Matthew Finger, DuPont Country Club

69-74–143

Jeff Osberg, Huntingdon Valley Country Club

71-73–144

Scott McLaughlin, Lu Lu Country Club

74-70–144

Gregor Orlando, Philadelphia Cricket Club

70-74–144

John Brennan, Philadelphia Cricket Club

72-73–145

Michael McDermott, Merion Golf Club

76-70–146

Christopher Ault, Yardley Country Club

75-71–146

Ben Feld, Green Valley Country Club

71-76–147

Michael Hyland, Little Mill Country Club

72-75–147

Benjamin Smith, Huntingdon Valley Country Club

70-77–147

Dan Bernard, Aronimink Golf Club

70-77–147

Dan Rudershausen, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club

73-74–147

Peter Barron, III, Stone Harbor Golf Club

74-74–148

Brian McDermott, Llanerch Country Club

73-75–148

Nathan Sutherland, Heidelberg Country Club

71-77–148

Conrad Von Borsig, Philadelphia Cricket Club

76-72–148

Chris Lange, Jr., Overbrook Golf Club

75-74–149

Matthew Gaffney, Running Deer Golf Club

75-75–150

John Murphy, II, Stone Harbor Golf Club

78-72–150

David Liotta, Whitemarsh Valley Country Club

74-76–150

Stephen Dressel, St. Davids Golf Club

72-78–150

Chip Lutz, LedgeRock Golf Club

69-81–150

Jack Wallace, Philadelphia Cricket Club

77-73–150

William Jeremiah, Bidermann Golf Club

73-77–150

Dan Arison, Applebrook Golf Club

71-79–150

Geoffrey Cooper, North Hills Country Club

76-75–151

Jamie Slonis, Tavistock Country Club

73-78–151

Paul Bickford, Little Mill Country Club

77-74–151

Brian Gillespie, St. Davids Golf Club

78-74–152

Raymond Thompson, Overbrook Golf Club

72-80–152

Christopher Thude, Union League Golf Club at Torresdale

76-76–152

Chris Storck, LedgeRock Golf Club

75-77–152

Sean Seese, Huntingdon Valley Country Club

78-74–152

Tom Grady, Radley Run Country Club

75-77–152

Rodney James, Heidelberg Country Club

74-79–153

James Kania, Jr., Overbrook Golf Club

76-77–153

Ryan Gelrod, Philadelphia Cricket Club

72-81–153

John Robinson, Lu Lu Country Club

71-82–153

Daniel Pinciotti, Jr., Huntingdon Valley Country Club

73-80–153

Thomas Timby, Jr., Mercer Oaks Golf Course

74-80–154

Brendan Borst, Philadelphia Cricket Club

77-77–154

Sean Coyle, Llanerch Country Club

77-78–155

G. Patrick Dougherty, Philadelphia Cricket Club

76-79–155

Scott McNeil, Bala Golf Club

78-77–155

Kevin Haag, Makefield Highlands Golf Club

77-78–155

Michael Tash, Tavistock Country Club

78-78–156

Roc Irey, Lookaway Golf Club

78-78–156

Brian Winters, Spring Ford Country Club

78-78–156

Christopher Clauson, Lu Lu Country Club

75-81–156

Joe Kerrigan, Jr., Llanerch Country Club

77-79–156

Oscar Mestre, Overbrook Golf Club

77-80–157

Thomas Gramigna, Tavistock Country Club

77-80–157

Adam Warner, Tavistock Country Club

77-80–157

Tyler Rae, Bidermann Golf Club

76-81–157

Ari Flaisher, McCall Golf & Country Club

75-83–158

James Gillespie, Little Mill Country Club

76-83–159

Kevin Koch, Spring Ford Country Club

77-82–159

Michael DiMeglio, Mercer Oaks Golf Course

76-83–159

Eddie Johnson, Llanerch Country Club

78-81–159

Paul Liebezeit, Aronimink Golf Club

78-82–160

John Cyb, Makefield Highlands Golf Club

78-82–160

Edward Kelly, Jr., Old York Road Country Club

78-83–161

James O'Connor, Penn Oaks Golf Club

78-83–161

Joe Perese, Philmont Country Club

78-83–161

Patrick Welsh, Makefield Highlands Golf Club

78-84–162

Jeffrey Huntzinger, Philmont Country Club

76-87–163

Perry Landis, Moselem Springs Golf Club

74-90–164

Joseph Dulka, Bellewood Country Club

77-NC–NC

 

*-determined in four-hole playoff

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