Category - Major Events

12 PGA of America Golf Professionals Make Cut at 84th KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship

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Jason Caron, PGA.

Twelve PGA of America Golf Professionals a part of the Corebridge Financial Team are playing the weekend at the 84th KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship.
Entering the third round, Jeffrey Schmid, a PGA Teaching Professional at Brown Deer Golf Club in Coralville, Iowa, was T13 at 5-under par after carding rounds of 66-71. As of noon ET on May 25, he's currently T-16.
“I mean, after 36 holes if you asked me yesterday, I would've been really happy with this,” said Schmid on Friday, “but I let a lot get away today.”
His four birdies in the second round, including a 33-foot putt he holed on the par-three 17th (his 8th hole of the day), were counteracted by two bogies and a double on the card.
Jeff Schmid, PGA.
Jeff Schmid, PGA.
The amount of text messages and Facebook notifications Schmid had following his first-round 66, where he sat tied for 3rd with defending champion Steve Stricker, provided a little extra motivation going forward.
“It was kind of cool. A lot of good texts, it's kind of nice,” he said. “I'm still in a good position. I think I can have a good finish if I play well. If I can get a couple good rounds, who knows."
In 1991, Schmid began his career as a tour professional where he remained until 2008. During this time he played on tours in Asia, South America and Canada as well as tournaments throughout the United States on the PGA and Nationwide Tours. His career as a PGA of America Golf Professional has led him to golf facilities in Florida, Montana and then back to his roots in Iowa. He’s been a Teaching Professional at Brown Deer Golf Club since 2018.
Trailing close behind Schmid in the Low PGA of America Golf Professional race is Jason Caron, PGA Head Golf Professional at Mill River Club in Oyster Bay, N.Y., who finished his second round in near darkness, and Frank Esposito Jr., PGA, the Teaching Professional at Mountain Ridge Country Club in West Caldwell, N.J. Both sit at 3-under, T20.
As of noon ET on May 25, Caron is playing lights out with an eagle hole-out and four birdies to move into T7.
Esposito, acknowledging this opportunity isn’t an every-week ordeal like it is for the Strickers, Langers and DiMarcos, is taking this Major one round at a time.
“I played with Langer in the practice round, these guys go about it like it's just another week,” Esposito explained. “To me, it means more. I don’t do it often. I have a real job. I just try to do what I do when I'm playing at home in Section tournaments and not try to get overwhelmed with everything.”
Frank Esposito, PGA.
Frank Esposito, PGA.
Esposito reached the top-five early Friday morning after birdies on holes three and six, but each birdie for the day was matched with bogies. Currently sitting T20, he’ll play the weekend in the KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship for the first time in 10 years
“I was counting the holes coming in figuring out when I can bogey every hole and finish even,” Esposito said. “When I got to the 17th tee I told my wife, I had a tear in my eye. Means a lot. It really does. These things are hard to make cuts in. These guys are really, really, really good. I’m very excited for the weekend.”
Esposito is a New Jersey Golf Hall of Fame Member competing in his eighth KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship. He has played in two PGA Championships (2008, ‘14) and 23 PGA Tour Champions events. He played in 12 events in 2015 with one top 10, a T7 at the Boeing Classic. He was a Teaching Professional at Forsgate Country Club in Monroe Township, N.J., from 2016-2021 and has been at Mountain Ridge Country Club since 2022.
Rain suspended play for about 90 minutes mid-afternoon on Friday, meaning the completion of the second round – and cut to low 70 and ties – was pushed to Saturday morning with just two players left to finish their rounds. 
Five PGA of America Golf Professionals sit at 3-over, T70 and will play the weekend. 
PGA Professional Bob Sowards, champion of the 2023 Senior PGA Professional Championship at PGA Golf Club in Florida, finished birdie-birdie on his final two holes Friday – the par-4 8th and par-5 9th – to move from 4-over to 2-over to make the cut for the fifth time in as many KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship starts. He tied for fifth in the championship three years ago at Southern Hills.
Corebridge Financial Team playing the weekend
Jeffrey Schmid, PGA - Iowa City, Iowa - Brown Deer Golf Club, Iowa Section
Frank Esposito Jr., PGA - Florham Park, N.J. - Mountain Ridge Country Club, New Jersey Section
Jason Caron, PGA - Greenlawn, N.Y. - Mill River Club Inc., Metropolitan Section
Tracy Phillips, PGA - Tulsa, Okla. - Cedar Ridge Country Club, South Central Section
Mick Smith, PGA - Summit, Wis. - Mick Smith Golf, Wisconsin Section
Rod Perry, PGA - Port Orange, Fla. - Crane Lakes Golf & Country Club, North Florida Section
Bob Sowards, PGA - Dublin, Ohio - Kinsale Golf and Fitness Club, Southern Ohio Section
Don Berry, PGA - Rogers, Minn. - Edinburgh USA Golf Club, Minnesota Section
Eric Bogar, PGA - Houston, Texas - Golfcrest Country Club, Southern Texas Section
Jim Carter, PGA - Scottsdale, Ariz. - Southwest PGA Life Member, Southwest Section
Raymond Franz Jr., PGA - Mount Pleasant, S.C. - Daniel Island Club, Carolinas Section
Mike Stone, PGA - Toledo, Ohio - Belmont Country Club, Northern Ohio Section