PGA Tournament Series: Polland, Sweeney tied after first-round 67s

By Craig Dolch
Published on

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Ben Polland birdied four of the last five holes Monday for a 5-under 67 to tie Michael Sweeney for the first-round lead in Event 1 of the PGA Tournament Series at PGA Golf Club.

Polland, the runner-up to Matt Dobyns in the PGA Professional National Championship, was 1-over after five holes, but made two birdies to turn at 1-under 35. His late birdie barrage on the Wanamaker Course enabled Polland to catch Sweeney.

“I didn’t get off to a good start, but I was able to battle back,” said Polland, the PGA Assistant Professional at Deepdale Golf Club in Manhasset, N.Y. “I’m surprised the scores weren’t lower. When I played in the Assistants Championship here, somebody was shooting 8-under every day.”

Sweeney, the Director of Instruction at The Bridge in Bridgehampton, N.Y. and also a teacher at the Jim McLean School in Miami, opened with a bogey but got that shot back when he chipped in for birdie at the difficult par-3 11th hole. He added five more birdies against a lone bogey for the 67.

“I hit it pretty good. I only missed two greens,” Sweeney said. “I didn’t make a lot of putts, but I made enough.”

Marshall Talkington, a PGA Assistant Professional at Jackson (Tenn.) National Golf Club, is alone in third place at 68. He didn’t make a bogey.
“I kept the ball in front of me and didn’t make any mistakes,” Talkington said. “I’ll need more of the same (Tuesday). Maybe a couple shots better.”

Dobyns, who is alone in fourth at 69, is playing in the PGA Tournament Series for the first time in many years because he leads the Omega PGA Professional Player of the Year Standings with 1,025 points. He played the par-5s in three under and was even the rest of his round.

“I’m trying to go out and finish off a great year by winning enough points to lock up national Player of the Year,” said Dobyns, the Head PGA Professional at Fresh Meadow Golf Club in Lake Success, N.Y. “It would be a great honor to do that.”

Bob Sowards, who is tied for second in the Player of the Year standings with Alan Morin, was among nine players tied for fifth at 70.

The PGA Tournament Series is presented by GOLF ADVISOR.

Monday’s scores from the first round of Event No. 1 of the PGA Tournament Series played on the par-72 Wanamaker Course at PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Fla.:

Michael Sweeney, Floral Park, N.Y. 33-34–67
Ben Polland, Manhasset, N.Y. 35-32–67
Marshall Talkington, Jackson, Tenn. 34-34–68
Matt Dobyns, Lake Success, N.Y. 35-34–69
Scott Berliner, Queensbury, N.Y. 35-35–70
Troy Pare, Seekonk, Mass. 35-35–70
Mark Brown, Glen Head, N.Y. 33-37–70
Marc Issler, Jupiter, Fla. 34-36–70
Bob Sowards, Dublin, Ohio 35-35–70
Mike Vance, Jackson, Tenn. 34-36–70
Omar Uresti, Austin, Texas 35-35–70
Rob Labritz, Pound Ridge, N.Y. 36-34–70
Frank Bensel, Jupiter, Fla. 35-35–70
Brett Melton, Washington, Ind. 33-38–71
Josh Webb, Ooltewah, Tenn. 34-37–71
Mark Anderson, St. Simons Island, Ga. 36-35–71
Rod Perry, Port Orange, Fla. 35-36–71
Jeff Sorenson, Blaine, Minn. 34-37–71
Lon Nielsen, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. 34-37–71
Jeffrey Schmid, Columbia, Mo. 37-35–72
Micah Rudosky, Cortez, Colo. 38-34–72
Joshua Rackley, Jupiter, Fla. 39-33–72
Shane Kowal, Woodstock, Ga. 36-36–72
Dakun Chang, Long Grove, Ill. 37-35–72
JC Anderson, O'Fallon, Mo. 36-36–72
Brian Norman, The Colony, Texas 36-37–73
Ari Papadopoulos, Avon, Colo. 37-36–73
Andrew Shiflet, Asheboro, N.C. 35-38–73
Michael Meisenzahl, Medford, N.J. 37-36–73
Zachary Brady, Jupiter, Fla. 35-38–73
Yong Joo, Bristow, Va. 35-38–73
Mario Guerra, Scarsdale, N.Y. 36-37–73
Eric Smith, Plano, Texas 38-35–73
Frank Dully, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. 38-35–73
Shawn Warren, Cape Elizabeth, Maine 34-39–73
Shaun Powers, Greenwich, Conn. 37-36–73
Blake Brookman, Seaford, Va. 36-38–74
Gregg Richbourg, Orlando, Fla. 34-40–74
Mike Midgette, Plainview, N.Y. 37-37–74
Ryan Kalista, Greenwich, Conn. 36-38–74
John Connelly, Maumee, Ohio 35-39–74
Carl Cooper, Humble, Texas 36-38–74
Anthony Aruta, Staten Island, N.Y. 37-38–75
Kirk Stauffer, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. 38-37–75
Rich Berberian, Derry, N.H. 34-41–75
Gerry James, Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. 41-34–75
Tim Weinhart, Johns Creek, Ga. 36-39–75
Kent St. Charles, Mount Vernon, N.Y. 38-37–75
Steve Parker, Houston, Texas 36-40–76
Nicholas Beddow, Shirley, N.Y. 39-37–76
Wyatt Worthington, Reynoldsburg, Ohio 37-39–76
Gregory McClimans, Clearwater, Fla. 38-38–76
Roy Vucinich, Moon Township, Pa. 38-38–76
Pete Catanzaro, Stamford, Conn. 38-38–76
Bill Murchison, Canton, Ga. 38-38–76
Austin Gaugert, Lake Geneva, Wis. 37-39–76
Scott Schulte, Harrison Township, Mich. 40-37–77
Matthew Sheperd, Nantucket, Mass. 39-38–77
Daniel Urban, Howell, Mich. 37-40–77
Matt Noel, Huntington, N.Y. 37-40–77
Patrick Massi, Greenwich, Conn. 41-36–77
Peter Kampmann, Riverside, Conn. 38-39–77
Kyle Higgins, Massapequa, N.Y. 38-39–77
Danny Lewis, Morrow, Ohio 38-40–78
Daniel Augustine, Castle Pines, Colo. 37-41–78
Brandon Myers, Danube, Minn. 38-40–78
Andrew Bostrom, North Caldwell, N.J. 41-37–78
James Giampaolo, Torrington, Conn. 37-41–78
Dwayne Randall, Clymer, N.Y. 44-35–79
Adam Larkin, North Bellmore, N.Y. 41-38–79
Mike Diffley, Pelham, N.Y. 41-38–79
Mark Faulkner, Marion, Ill. 40-39–79
Benjamin Engle, Indianapolis, Ind. 42-38–80
Patrick Rada, Palm Beach Gardens, Fla. 38-42–80
John Lynch, Vero Beach, Fla. 40-41–81
Mark Braziller, Brooklyn, N.Y. 39-42–81
Fred Blumenstock, Boonton, N.J. 41-40–81
Joe Gothmann, Tarrytown, N.Y. 42-40–82
Sherri Pla, West Palm Beach, Fla. 45-37–82
Zac Bennardo, Port St. Lucie, Fla. 43-39–82
Michael Adkins, West Palm Beach, Fla. 41-42–83
Mike Larkin, Harrison, N.Y. 40-44–84
Mike Demakos, Port St. Lucie, Fla. 42-42–84
Tony Frabizzio, Fairfield, Conn. 44-45–89
Willie Brooks, Port St. Lucie, Fla. 45-47–92