*97.5 The Fanatic Preview
Team Philadelphia regains Compher Cup; defeats NJSGAThe Golf Association of Philadelphia defeated the New Jersey State Golf Association, 11.5-6.5, to regain the prestigious Compher Cup on a breezy and chilly Wednesday at Gulph Mills Golf Club.
The victory improved the Golf Association of Philadelphiaâ€™s record to 32-12 with four ties in the annual Compher Cup Matches between the neighboring associations. Last year, Team New Jersey cruised to a 13.5-4.5 win at Hollywood Golf Club in Deal, N.J.
"We needed 9.5 points to win and I thought the key to the victory was the great job our team did in the better-ball matches, winning four and tying one. Getting those 4.5 points was huge,â€ť said Team Philadelphia captain Doug Zelner of Coatesville CC. â€śThe weather conditions were definitely a factor, especially on those holes into the wind. I wish we got to play Gulph Mills more often -- it is a fantastic course, in outstanding shape and it was perfect for the Compher Cup.â€ť
The decisive points, as it turned out, came from Team Philadelphiaâ€™s fifth group. Chris Lange of Overbrook Golf Club scored a 4&2 decision over New Jersey co-captain Jay Blumenfeld of Mountain Ridge Golf Club in singles action and then partnered with Anthony Martire of Seaview Resort & Spa for a 4&3 better-ball victory. Those two points gave Team Philadelphia the 9.5 points required to regain the Cup.
Langeâ€™s better-ball win improved his record to a remarkable 19-2 with three ties in Compher Cup four-ball competitions.
The recently turned 55-yearÂ¬-old has competed in 24 of the 48 Compher Cups.
â€śItâ€™s an honor to play in the Matches,â€ť said Lange. â€śIt is always at great golf courses, under challenging conditions and is always a fun day, win or lose. We are lucky Mr. Compher had the idea.â€ť
In addition to Lange, other singles winners for Team Philadelphia were Chris Ault of Yardley CC; Tom Borsello of White Clay Creek CC; Michael Brown of Lookaway GC; Brian Gillespie of St. Davids GC; Michael Hyland of Little Mill CC and Glenn Smeraglio of Mercer Oaks GC.
The teams of Ault and Smeraglio; Borsello and Sean Leonard of Tavistock CC; and Brown and Jeff Griest of Waynesborough CC also each earned a point in the better-ball portion. Hyland and Zelner scored a half point.
In the Compher Cup, each association fields a 12-man team with players simultaneously competing in a singles match and four-ball match. There are a total of 18 possible points. Matches that end in a tie result in a half point for the team.
Fred Compher, a former New Jersey State Golf Association president, conceived the neighborhood matches after leaving his post in 1959. Compher donated a silver trophy that year earmarked for such a rivalry.
In 1961, association representatives Bob Jacobson of New Jersey and Richard Ollmah of GAP completed the details. In 1962, the first Compher Cup matches took place. That year, the NJSGA side forged a 5â€“1 lead in the morning foursomesâ€™ competitions and held serve in the afternoon singles matches for an 11.5-6.5 victory.
After the New Jersey victory, Compher himself, who was known at the time as the most successful NJSGA president in its history, presented the trophy â€śto promote golf between the groups.â€ť