Playing in the final group of the day on Philadelphia Cricket Club’s Militia Hill Course, Philadelphia Country Club head pro Scott Reilly fired a 6-under 66 to grab a one-shot lead at the end of the first round of the Philadelphia Section PGA Championship Tuesday.
Reilly didn’t have a bogey on his card and three birdies on each side on the par-72 Militia Hill Course.
The day’s most impressive round might have belonged to Applebrook Golf Club head pro Dave McNabb, playing in the first group of the day at the Wissahickon Course, the classic A.W. Tillinghast design. McNabb had an eagle and three birdies against one bogey over the par-70 Wissahickon Course for a 4-under 66 that leaves him in a tie for third.
Players will switch courses for Wednesday’s second round after which the field will be cut to the low 60 and ties for Thursday’s final round at the Wissahickon course. The top 12 finishers will earn a trip to the PGA Professional Championship next summer at the Sunriver Resort in Oregon.
The Cricket Club played host to that national event for club professionals in 2015. The top senior players tested the Wissahickon Course earlier this summer for the Senior Players Championship won by Bernhard Langer.
Gulph Mills Golf Club pro Jordan Gibbs is alone in second place, a shot back of Reilly, after a 5-under 67 at the Militia Hill Course. Gibbs had six birdies against one bogey.
Sharing third place with McNabb at 4-under is Alex Knoll of Bethlehem Country Club, who had a 68 at the Militia Hill Course.
The second-best round of the day at the Wissahickon Course belonged to Stu Ingraham, the head of instruction at the M Golf Range in Newtown Square. Ingraham, who claimed the Section’s senior championship last month at St. Davids Golf Club, fired a 3-under 67 and is tied for fifth.
Also at 3-under is Mike Molino of The Country Club of Scranton, who posted a 69 at the Militia Hill Course.
Two of the three players tied for seventh at 2-under – Radnor Valley Country Club head pro George Forster and Ryan Shaughnessy of Wedgewood Golf Course – posted 68s at the Wissahickon Course. Also at 2-under with a 70 at the Militia Hill Course is Don Allan of Burlington Country Club.
Tony Perla, an assistant pro at the host Philadelphia Cricket Club, and Stonewall head pro Ryan Lagergren both carded 1-under 69s at the Wissahickon Course and are two of the six players tied for 10th at 1-under. Lagergren joined Reilly as one of two players in the field to go bogey-free in their rounds.
Also at 1-under, after 71s at the Militia Hill Course, were John DiMarco of Laurel Creek Country Club, Concord Country Club head pro Mike Moses, Adam Brigham of Waynesborough Country Club and Bill Walker of Riverton Country Club.