When it comes to the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s Senior Four-Man Team Championship, the hard part can be putting the team together.
Philadelphia Country Club’s Michael Nilon, who played on the winning team when the event was held at The Springhaven Club in 2007, enlisted fellow Philly member John LeBoeuf and Buck Jones of the Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association, with whom Nilon has frequently teamed up with in better-ball events.
As for a fourth, well Jones had an idea and called Jim Yenser, who plays out of Ravens Claw Golf Club and with whom Jones has also partnered with in better-ball events.
And so the winning 2016 Senior Four-Man Team was born. The foursome put together a two-best-balls-of-foursome total of 9-under 131 over the 6,189-yard, par-70 Philmont Country Club layout Friday.
Their score was matched by the Wilmington Country Club quartet of Brett Koelle, Donald MacKelcan, Robert Hackett Jr. and Steven Walczak and Team Nilon-LeBouef-Jones-Yenser was awarded the title on a match of cards. The teams tied on a back-nine match of cards, so it became the last six holes and Team Nilon-LeBouef-Jones-Yenser had a 34-36 margin there for the win.
Nilon saved his best for last, going 1-under 34 on the front nine at Philmont, the second nine as the winners started on the back nine. LeBouef was solid all day, carding a 2-over 72 on his ball. And Jones and Yenser both made birdies on 15 and 18 in what turned out to be the stretch from which the matching of cards would come.
And Yenser was seeing the course for the first time.
“The approach shots are difficult, the greens are difficult,” Yenser told the GAP website. “I know about it through some people telling me about the course – it’s a classic Philadelphia course – but the greens ended up playing harder than what people have said.”
Thomas Hyland of Little Mill Country Club, James Muller of Manufacturers Golf & Country Club, Bryan Marvin of Old York Road Country Club and Bob Arthur of Tavistock Country Club finished third at 8-under 132.
Two teams – Christopher Clauson of LuLu Country Club, Michael Quinn of the Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association, Steven Lucas of White Manor Country Club and the father-in-law of and former PGA Tour caddy for Sean O’Hair, and Gregory Bulga of Yardley Country Club and the Merion Golf Club foursome of Bill Charpek, Gordon Jameson, J. Kirk Lumley and Robert Wagner – shared fourth place at 5-under 135.
The ringer team of Neil McDermott of Llanerch Country Club, Carl Everett of Merion, Michael Rose of Talamore Country Club and three-time reigning GAP Super-Senior Player of the Year Don Donatoni of White Manor finished alone in sixth place at 4-under 136.
Bob Majczan of Lookaway Golf Club, Tom Dicinti of Old York Country Club at Chesterfield, Robert Amen of the Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association and Thomas Bartolacci Jr. of Saucon Valley Country Club finished seventh at 1-under 139.
Alan Lazzarino and Robert Walters of DuPont Country Club and Rocky Dare and Thomas Alestock of Running Deer Golf Club finished eighth at even-par 140.