When Huntingdon Valley Country Club’s Jeff Osberg rolled in his four-foot birdie putt on the ninth hole at The Ridge at Back Brook Tuesday, he joined his father Rick as a winner of the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s Open Championship.
Osberg, a 32-year-old Bryn Mawr resident, had finished in a tie with Spring Mill Country Club’s Christopher Crawford at even-par 142 at the end of the regulation 36 holes Monday. An hour-and-40-minute rain delay Monday meant that the four-hole playoff had to be pushed to Tuesday morning.
The playoff started on the sixth hole with Osberg seizing the advantage early with a par, but Crawford evening things up on the par-3 eighth when Osberg’s tee shot found the water and he took a double bogey.
So they arrived at the 410-yard, par-4 ninth hole still tied. Crawford had made double bogey on the ninth at the end of regulation to fall back into the playoff with Osberg.
Crawford, who finished the finest career in the history of Drexel golf this spring, again drove in the right rough and could do no better than muscle an 8-iron to 30 feet. Osberg blasted a driver into short rough on the left side and lifted a 56-degree wedge shot four feet away. After a miss by Crawford, Osberg dropped in his birdie putt to claim the title.
His father Rick, the former longtime head pro at Waynesborough Country Club, won the 1999 Philadelphia Open at Waynesborough.
“It’s awesome,” Osberg, a standout at Owen J. Roberts and a member of Guilford College’s 2005 NCAA Division III championship team, told the GAP website. “I grew up idolizing my dad. Obviously, he was one of the better players in the Philadelphia Section for a long time. To have my name on the same trophy as him is pretty incredible.”
It marked the seventh straight time that an amateur has won the Philadelphia Open title. And it probably made up a little for Osberg’s heartbreaking loss in the BMW Philadelphia Amateur to his friend Michael McDermott in the match-play final at Merion Golf Club’s historic East Course last month.