A few weeks ago, Tavistock Country Club assistant pro Greg Matthias didn’t have a Philadelphia Section PGA victory to his credit.
But after emerging from a five-man playoff to capture the William Hyndman III Memorial Classic Monday at Huntingdon Valley Country, Matthias suddenly owns wins in two Omega Player of the Year points events presented by the Haverford Trust Company.
Matthias cruised to a four-shot victory in the Conestoga Classic June 25 at Conestoga Country Club for his initial Philadelphia Section PGA win.
Playing late in the day Monday, Matthias started on the back nine and when he made birdies on two, three and five, he was 3-under, a shot better than four players who had posted 2-under 68 over the tough 6,780-yard, par-70 William Flynn design at Huntingdon Valley.
But a bogey at the par-5 seventh dropped him back into a tie with Overbrook Golf Club head pro Eric Kennedy, Lookaway Golf Club assistant pro Michael Little, Bethlehem Golf Club assistant pro Alex Knoll and Waynesborough Country Club assistant pro Zac Oakley.
The fivesome headed for the first playoff hole, No. 18 at Huntingdon Valley, and Matthias, Knoll and Oakley continued on after they made pars with Kennedy and Little being eliminated. Matthias and Oakley nearly drove the second hole of the playoff, the par-4 first, and both made birdie to eliminate Knoll and turn into a one-on-one battle.
The third playoff hole was the par-3 17th at Huntingdon Valley and Matthias and Oakley both missed the green. Matthias, however, got it up-and-down for a par that gave him back-to-back victories in Omega Player of the Year points events presented by the Haverford Trust Company.
“Getting my first win at Conestoga definitely gave me a lot of confidence,” Matthias told the Philadelphia Section PGA website. “We have so many good players in our Section, so to walk away with consecutive wins is a great experience. The playoff had so many good players, so it means a lot to walk away the winner.”
Dave McNabb, the head pro at Applebrook Golf Club, Billy Stewart, an assistant pro at The ACE Club, and Jordan Shuey from the West Shore Country Club finished a shot out of the playoff in a tie for sixth at 1-under 69. Knoll, McNabb and Stewart are three of the five Philadelphia Section pros who played all four rounds in last month’s PGA Professional Championship, presented by Club Car and Omega, at the Bayonet Black Horse Resort on northern California’s Monterey Peninsula.
Rounding out the top 10 were Sunnybrook Golf Club assistant pro Andrew Turner and Mike Tobiason out of the Deerfield Golf Club pro shop, both of whom matched par at 70 and finished tied for ninth.
The William Hyndman III Memorial Classic was simultaneously a points event for the Philadelphia Assistants’ Organization (PAO) and Matthias’ playoff win gave him that victory as well. Only Kennedy of the five involved in the playoff is not an assistant pro, so Little, Knoll and Oakley shared second place in the PAO standings.
McNabb topped the always competitive senior division with his 1-under 69. Radnor Valley Country Club head pro George Forster was the runnerup with a 1-over 71 and Greg Farrow, the head man at Deerwood Country Club, was third with a 72.
Don DeAngelis of Center Square Golf Club topped the super-senior division with a 3-over 73.