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Amateur Chris Lange takes 100th Open Championship

  GLADWYNE, Pa-Chris Lange’s resume is as impressive as any current or former player in the Golf Association of Philadelphia. The 49-year-old is a three-time Amateur and a three-time Patterson Cup (the Association’s stroke play competition) champion. The longtime Overbrook GC member also has finished as the Low Amateur in the Philadelphia Open Championship twice – a second- and third-place showing.

  On Wednesday, Lange bettered those two notable prior Open placings in grand style, taking the 100th Open Championship as administered by the Golf Association of Philadelphia at the extremely difficult and challenging Philadelphia CC (par 70, 6,956 yards). Lange posted a 1-over-par total (141), the low golfer in the field of 60 players – 45 professionals from the Philadelphia Section of the PGA and 15 amateurs.

  The Open is a 36-hole, one-day event.

   "This is very special," said Lange, the first amateur to take the Open since Michael Brown did so in 1997. "I’ve been close a couple, but I was never able to finish the job."

  Dave Quinn, the golf professional at Links Golf Club, placed second with a 143 total (71-72) and Michael McDermott, the reigning Golf Association Player of the Year from Llanerch CC, finished third with scores of 73-71 for a 144 finish.

  Defending champion Brian Kelly placed seventh with rounds of 76-71 and 147 total (7-over par).

  Kim Verrecchio, a teaching professional at Waynesborough CC, who made history by becoming the first woman to ever compete in the Open, carded rounds of 92 and 87 for a 179 total.

  "I’m glad I played. Everyone involved was very supportive," said Verrecchio, 35, of Havertown, Pa. "The golf course was much more difficult than I could have ever prepared for."

  Lange’s victory marked the 11th time an amateur has captured the Open Championship. Only amateur’s James B. McHale, Jr. (1948), William Hyndman, III (1968-69), R. Jay Sigel (1975, 77-78, 80, 86-87) and Brown (1997) have ever captured Open titles.

  With Philadelphia CC playing long and difficult, Lange proved a model of consistency – at least as close as one could on this day. He made four bogeys and four birdies in the first round. On the final 18 holes, he registered four bogeys and three birdies.

  Lange never strayed too far from a fairway or green all day. And on his final nine, he separated himself from the rest of the field with two fantastic birdies. On No. 1 (par 4, 325 yards), his 28th hole the Bryn Mawr, Pa. resident dropped a Lob Wedge to three feet. On No. 2 (par 4, 353 yards), Lange landed a 52-degree wedge 15 feet from the hole before making the putt for another birdie.

  "That separated me from everyone else," said Lange. "I knew that."

  Lange kept the round together after that with four pars and three bogeys.

  He bogeyed the last two holes with the result well in hand.

  "I knew at the 34th hole I had a three or four-shot lead," said Lange, "but I still felt pretty nervous."

  Quinn posted a 71 in the morning trailing only Lange. His position never changed the rest of the day. The 38-year-old Marlton, N.J. resident posted a 72 in his final round, never seriously making a run at the leader.

  "I couldn’t get the speed of the greens in the afternoon," said Quinn, who did take home the top professional prize of $4,400. Amateurs are not eligible for prize money. "I was parring everything and then I made a couple of bad swings coming in. I could never really challenge him."

  Quinn surprised himself with the top finish. He just missed qualifying for the PGA Championship by a stroke after a strong push at the recent Club Professional’s Championship.

  Being so close, Quinn assessed his game and made some swing changes, for what he called the long run. Today, he finally witnessed some positive results.

  NOTES-The total purse for the Open Championship was $23,250. The top 15 professionals received prize money … Verrecchio played from the same set of tees as the male competitors. She qualified at the Philadelphia Section of the PGA Open Qualifier at Downingtown CC. There, under section standards, she played from 82 percent of the golf course.

Pos

Name

Club

Rd. 1

Rd. 2

Total

1

(a) Chris Lange

Overbrook GC

70

71

141

2

David W. Quinn

Links Golf Club

71

72

143

3

(a) Michael P. McDermott

Llanerch Country Club

73

71

144

4

William J. Sautter

Talamore at Oak Terrace

73

72

145

T5

Stuart Ingraham

Overbrook Golf Club

74

72

146

T5

Steve A. Madsen

Wilmington Country Club

74

72

146

7

Brian Kelly

Bucknell Golf Club

76

71

147

T8

(a) P. Chet Walsh

Philadelphia Country Club

74

74

148

T8

Terry Hertzog

Bent Creek Country Club

74

74

148

T10

William Walker

Talamore at Oak Terrace

75

74

149

T10

Dave Roberts

Cedarbrook Country Club

76

73

149

T12

Travis W. Deibert

Lehigh Country Club

75

75

150

T12

Bobby Kershner

Spring Ford Country Club

73

77

150

T12

Hugh P. Reilly

Twining Valley Golf Club

75

75

150

T12

Orist G. Wells, Jr.

Pitman Golf Club

73

77

150

T12

Tom Ryan

Phoenixville Country Club

76

74

150

17

George Frake, II

Little Mill Country Club

77

74

151

T18

(a) Oscar L. Mestre, Jr.

Overbrook Golf Club

76

76

152

T18

(a) Jamie Slonis

Tavistock Country Club

76

76

152

T18

John D. Allen

Sunnybrook Golf Club

78

74

152

T18

Graham Dendler

Merion Golf Club

77

75

152

T18

Paul Galczyk

Westover Inn Golf Club

76

76

152

T18

Paul A. Oglesby

Merion Golf Club

76

76

152

T18

Greg Farrow

Deerwood Country Club

77

75

152

T18

Mark Parisi

Christiana Country Club

79

73

152

T18

Rob Shuey

Golf Club at Felicita

75

77

152

T27

(a) Lynn T. Kilduff

Huntsville Golf Club

76

77

153

T27

(a) Brian Gillespie

St. Davids Golf Club

80

73

153

T27

John Cooper

Meadowlands Country Club

79

74

153

T27

George Forster

Radnor Valley Country Club

75

78

153

T31

(a) Anthony M. Apostolico

Deerfield Golf & Tennis Club

81

74

155

T31

John DiMarco

Laurel Creek Country Club

79

76

155

T31

John Spina

Talamore at Oak Terrace

78

77

155

T34

(a) Steve J. Owens

Wildwood Golf & Country Club

79

77

156

T34

(a) John M. Pelet

Wyncote Golf Club

79

77

156

T36

Craig Frank

The Hills at Perkiomen

83

74

157

T36

Peter S. Kowalinski

Ledgerock Golf Club

79

78

157

T36

Ralph Viola

Golf Edu Incorporated

76

81

157

T39

(a) Chris Gallagher

Penn Oaks Golf Club

80

78

158

T39

Steve Hudson

Philadelphia Cricket Club

79

79

158

T39

Sean P. Smyth

Blue Ridge Country Club

81

77

158

T42

(a) Scott Ehrlich

Meadowlands Country Club

82

77

159

T42

Sean M. Riley

Philadelphia Cricket Club

78

81

159

T44

David L. Fields

Brookside Country Club

79

81

160

T44

David A. Eaton

Philadelphia Country Club

78

82

160

T46

(a) Sean Seese

Huntingdon Valley Country

79

82

161

T46

Andrew Barbin

Chesapeake Bay Golf Club

83

78

161

T48

Doug M. Delaney

Sand Barrens Golf Course

80

82

162

T48

Tom P. Gilbert

Gulph Mills Golf Club

85

77

162

50

J.R. Delich

Philadelphia PGA

80

83

163

T51

Barry W. Dear

South Jersey Golf Center

77

87

164

T51

Jim J. Smith Jr.

Talamore at Oak Terrace

78

86

164

53

(a) Michael A. Tash

Tavistock Country Club

82

83

165

T54

(a) Geoff Forcino

Waynesborough Country Club

82

85

167

T54

Robert M. Lennon

Blue Herron Pines Golf Club

82

85

167

56

Daniel J. Ayars

Links Golf Club

84

84

168

57

Kimberly A. Verrecchio

Waynesborough Country Club

92

87

179

T58

John Appleget

Blue Herron Pines Golf Club

79

NC

NC

T58

Rick Osberg

Logo Osberg

83

WD

WD

 

WD-withdrawal; NC-no card

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