Chris Hoyer, Golf Course Superintendent
The final round of the Southern California PGA Professional Championship concluded at Bermuda Dunes Country Club with Michael Block of Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club being crowned as the 92nd Section Champion!
After two days and 36 holes of golf in the desert heat, the field was cut to the top 60 plus ties, with the cut line falling at 151, seven-over par, and 64 players making it into the final round. In the final grouping of the day was Paul Devine (-5) of Pauma Valley Country Club, Brian Smock (-5) of Coronado Golf Course, and Arroyo Trabuco’s Michael Block three strokes behind at (-2). With some ground to pick up, Block had a tough break early on the second hole when a putt ricocheted off the hole liner, costing an early stroke. Using this hiccup as pure motivation, Block rose to the occasion and carded four birdies to finish out the front nine. Making the turn, Devine had a two shot lead over Block, but this didn’t shake the steady hand of Michael, going on to mark two more birdies on his card heading to the 18th tee box.
Simultaneously, Alan Scheer of Steele Canyon Golf Club made a late charge up the leaderboard, carding a final round of four-under, placing him in second place at the finish with a five-under 54-hole total of 211. That meant Block carried a one-shot lead staring down the fairway on the par five number 18. Rising to the occasion, and finishing in true champion fashion, Block birdied the hole with a gallery of spectators looking on and etched his name into the record books as the 2017 Champion. An all around class act, Michael Block commented on his rounds saying, “I played well and I knew that today I needed to go out and have a great round. I had to reach deep to catch Brian (Smock) and Paul (Devine), especially because they are such great players and they had a three shot lead on me. I also knew I needed birdies in order to make it happen.”
Low round of the day went to Alison Curdt of Wood Ranch Golf Club posting a six-under, 66, earning her one of ten spots into the 2018 PGA Professional Championship in Seaside, California. She will be the first female to represent the Southern California PGA at this prestigious Championship. Alison recently qualified for the 2019 KPMG Women’s PGA Championship.
The Southern California PGA is extremely proud to announce Michael Block as a first-time victor of the Southern California PGA Professional Championship! The top 10 players advancing to the PGA Professional Championship, June 17-20, 2018 at Bayonet Black Horse in Seaside, CA are Alan Scheer, Alison Curdt, Paul Devine, Barry Mahlberg, Grant Strobel, Greg Casagranda, Thomas Chu, Mike Mitchell, Chris Starkjohann and Rick Garboski.
In addition, Block, winner of the 2015 PGA Professional Championship, Smock, and 2016 Section Champion Kenny Pigman – due to their top 20 finishes in the PGA Professional Championship last year, had already earned an exemption into the 2018 PGA Professional Championship, making 13 the number of SCPGA Professionals to represent the section.
The second round of the 93rd Southern California PGA Professional Championship concluded this afternoon at Bermuda Dunes Country Club. With temperatures scorching past 100 degrees for the second day in a row, the course played extremely tough for the impressive field of 146 Class A PGA Professionals, with only 16 players posting rounds under par.
The second round “Moving Day” saw impressive rounds of 68 from Thomas Chu of Valencia Country Club and Ryan Kennedy of Rustic Canyon Golf Club, both posting day two low rounds of four-under par. However, this was not enough to find their names atop the leaderboard.
After sharing the round one lead at four-under par, Brian Smock of Coronado Golf Course and Paul Devine of Pauma Valley Country Club both posted rounds of 71 in the morning wave, holding onto a three shot lead over the field. At the conclusion of round two play a cut was made to low 60 and ties, with the cut line at +7, seeing 64 competitors into tomorrow’s final round aiming to claim the title of Southern California PGA Professional Champion.
The final round begins tomorrow at 7:00am. Follow the action on social media @scpga and #SCPGASectionChamp.
The 93rd Annual Southern California PGA Professional Championship began the first round of play today at the magnificent Bermuda Dunes Country Club. This championship tournament features 146 elite PGA professionals, each of whom are vying to join a prestigious list of past champions dating back to 1924. In addition to etching their names into history, the competition is fierce to capture a portion of the $80,000 combined purse.
After round one, Brian Smock of Coronado Golf Course and Paul Devine of Pauma Valley Country Club sit atop the leaderboard, each carding an opening round of four-under par, 68. Three players are one shot back of the lead at three-under par, 69: Steve Holmes of Westlake Village Golf Club, Greg Casagranda of The Hodges Golf Learning Center, and Richard Valenzuela of Blythe Golf Course.
Upon the conclusion of round two, a cut will be made to low 60 and ties.
Round two begins tomorrow at 7:00am. Follow the action on social media @scpga and #SCPGASectionChamp.