Headline: Rees-Jones Designed TGC at Sacconnesset - A True "Modern Classic" Golf Course - Set to Host 108th Massachusetts Open Championship on June 12-14

For Immediate Release: June 9, 2017

Will Jason Thesher defend his MGA Open title? The answer will be determined next week - June 12-14 - at TGC at Sacconnesset.

Norton, MA — The 108th Massachusetts Open Championship will kick off next week at Falmouth’s TGC at Sacconnesset.

This prestigious Championship Proper - to be contested on June 12-14 - is the only MGA event that includes a field of professional and amateur competitors and features one of the largest professional purses - $75,000 - in New England.

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108th MGA Open Quick Links

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Eyeing the Clarence G. Cochrane Memorial Trophy will be an impressive field that includes exempt competitors as well as those who advanced through sectional qualifying which was held from May 15 through May 24 at six sites located across the state.

The Massachusetts Open Championship is one of the "true" open events as amateur and professionals from any state or country are eligible to enter.

"The Mass Open is one of the most unique opens in the area because amateur and professionals from any state or country are eligible to enter," said Kevin Eldridge, the MGA’s Director of Rules & Competition. "Entries opened in early February and we ended up with more than 500 entries."

The 91 professional players in the field will also be seeking a share of the $75,000 purse which will be distributed to the low 50 professional finishers and ties. The winner will receive a check for $15,000.

The low amateur honor - which one year ago was won by Matt Hutchins (Naples, FL) - will be awarded the The Commonwealth Cup at the completion of play on Wednesday.

“We received applications from across the country and even internationally from Canada,” said Eldridge. “More than 20 states are represented including competitors from Colorado, Arizona, California, Georgia and Kentucky to name just a few.”

This year's host site of TGC at Sacconnesset will be hosting its fifth MGA Championship Proper in 10 years (see complete list below). The club most recently played host to the 2016 Massachusetts Mid-Amateur Championship, an event won by three-time MGA Player of the Year Matt Parziale (Thorny Lea GC), who will be also be competing in this year Massachusetts Open Championship.  

“TGC at Sacconnesset has been a tremendous partner with the MGA,” said Jesse Menachem, the MGA's Executive Director. “For a club celebrating 10 years and hosting five MGA championships, it’s a true testament to their commitment to amateur golf. TGC is nothing but a first-class operation.”

Considered a "modern classic", the Rees Jones designed course first opened for play on June 3, 2007 and is recognized as the last new course to be built on raw land on Cape Cod. The course will play at just over 7,000 yards for the Massachusetts Open Championship.

“The layout of the golf course will provide a true test of golf and will give our championship staff an opportunity to provide a different course set up every day,” said Eldridge. “From the long par 4 that plays over 460 yards to the driveable par 4 2nd hole, we can vary course set up every day. The ever-present changing Cape Cod wind will come into effect and will help dictate the test that these players will face.”

During Massachusetts Open Media Day held on May 25, Jones was asked about what he thought about the region’s top talent coming to East Falmouth to play his TGC at Sacconnesset layout.

“They are probably thinking it’s going to be a pushover looking at the yardage, and some of them are going to be surprised,” said Jones, who spoke at length during an MGA Open Media Day held on May 25. “You’re going to have 65s and 66s and you want to have a couple of those, [but] they are not going to have a 65 or a 66 every day.”

SPECTATOR AMENITIES

  • Admission throughout the three-day event is free of charge for the general public.
  • Parking will be limited at TGC at Sacconnesset. Overflow parking will be available along the club’s driveway and the back portion of The Cape Club parking lot (125 Falmouth Woods Road).
  • To help spectators plan ahead, starting times for Round 1 and Round 2 are now available (see links to the right) as well as a special TGC at Sacconnesset Program Guide that includes a course map and an official MGA scorecard.
  • A scoreboard area will be set up outside of the clubhouse so that all spectators and players can follow all of the action. There will also be an electronic scoreboard set up inside the clubhouse.
  • Food and beverage will be available in the clubhouse and at the Halfway House located at Tees 11&13. Credit only be accepted at both locations.
  • Restrooms are available in the clubhouse, between holes 4 & 5, and the Halfway House located at Tees 11&13
  • Golf carts are available for rules officials only. If you need transportation or require special attention, please see the MGA's Mobility Impaired Spectator Cart Policy
  • Here is a summary of the ways you can keep track of all the action throughout the three-day event.

ABOUT THE MASSACHUSTTS OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

The Massachusetts Open Championship is the Massachusetts State Open Championship, open to both amateur and professional golfers. It has been played annually since 1905 (except for war years) at Bay State courses and was even considered a PGA Tour event from 1916 to 1937. Former winners include World Golf Hall of Fame players Donald Ross, Walter Hagen, Leo Diegel, Francis Ouimet, Gene Sarazen, Byron Nelson, Horton Smith, and Julius Boros.

Eligibility - Entries are open to professional golfers and amateur golfers with an active USGA GHIN Handicap Index not exceeding 2.4 (as determined by the April 15, 2017 Handicap Revision), or who have completed their handicap certification.

Par & Yardage - TGC at Sacconnesset will play around 7,047 yards and a par of 36-36—72. The front nine will play around 3,471 yards while the back nine will measure at approximately 3,576 yards.

TGC at Sacconnesset Previously Hosted MGA Championships:

  • 2007 - MGA Senior Amateur Championship - won by Doug Crawford
  • 2011 MGA Senior Four-Ball Championship – won by Kevin Carey and Ray Richard
  • 2013 MGA Father & Daughter Championship – won by John/Mary Mulhacy (Senior Division) and Paul/Danielle Lapierre (Junior Division).
  • 2016 MGA Mid-Amateur Championship – won by Matt Parziale

PAST CHAMPIONS IN THE FIELD

The following players have been victorious at this event, which dates back to 1905, and will be competing in the 2017 Championship Proper.

  • 2016 - Jason Thresher (West Suffield, CT)
  • 2015 - Joe Harney (Granite Links GC)
  • 2014 - Ian Thimble (George Wright GC)
  • 2011 - Kyle Gallo (Manchester, CT)
  • 1995, 1997, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2007 - Geoffrey Sisk (Marshfield CC)
  • 1990 - Fran Quinn (Wachusett CC)
  • 1989, 1992 - Andrew Morse (William J. Devine GC)
  • 1986 - Kevin Johnson (CC of Halifax)

BREAKING DOWN THE FIELD

Here are some interesting facts about this year's Championship Proper field

  • Average Age: 29.6
  • Most Common Name in the Field : John (10)
  • Youngest Player: Michael Thorbjornsen (15)
  • Oldest Player: Kevin Carey (62)
  • Total Number of MGA Member Clubs Represented: 64
  • Most Represented MGA Member Clubs: Concord CC (4), Bass Rocks GC (3), GreatHorse (3), Marlborough CC (3), Thorny Lea GC (3)
  • Number of Amateurs in the Field – 58
  • Number of Professionals in the Field – 91
  • Number of Amateurs Awaiting Reinstatement-1

KEEPING UP WITH THE MASSACHUSETTS OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP

Complete coverage of the 2017 Massachusetts Open Championship will be available online (MGAlinks.org) and via social media.

Join the conversation and share your photos, memories and thoughts by following us on Twitter (@mgalinks #MassOpen), Facebook (@ Massachusetts-Golf-Association) and Instagram @mgalinks #MassOpen).

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