Sheridan Hangs on to Win at Matterhorn
24 Sep 2021 at 16:36 | Published by: PatPenguin | Views: 1789 | News search
Top 8 of the Pro Division (Photo by The Putting Penguin)
Canton, Connecticut - In the 5th year of his organization, The Putting Penguin, running the Matterhorn International Pro-Am, Pat Sheridan pushed his way up the leaderboard, outlasted the competition and grabbed his first win at the tournament. It was a beautiful September day as 18 pros and 20 amateurs teed up for the tournament looking to see if they could best a course known for its scant aces and handful of daunting holes. This year the pro division had been reduced from five rounds to three rounds and everyone knew this meant scores would be tight and every mistake would stand out. » Final Results
Sheridan was up against some formidable competition that day as two of the past winners, Mark "Highlighter" Novicki and Justin Seymour, who was also coming off wins in Maine and Maryland, as well as local young-gun Jonah Hurley all were in the field. Seymour, Hurley and Sheridan would all come off the tee box strong, carding 38s in the first round. Dave Vayda, new to the tournament in 2021, also carded a 38 in the first round. The scores remained hot as the weather warmed up with Matt Liles joining the 38 club in the 2nd round while Hurley and Sheridan matched. This set up an intense final round with Sheridan and Hurley matched at 76, Seymour at 77 and Liles at 78. Randy Rice and Jacob Yale weren't far behind with 79s. In the 3rd round, Sheridan would sneak out to a 2 stroke lead at one point having gotten through the front nine with all twos. Seymour had slipped leaving a showdown between Sheridan, Hurley and Liles. Two bad mistakes left Hurley and Sheridan tied going into the 18th hole, a long and tough par 3 that Hurley had gotten a two on in the previous two rounds. It wouldn't be third time's a charm as he recorded a three and Sheridan just barely missed final hole glory as his second putt from 20 feet away had a bit too much pace on it and rimmed out. His tap in three meant it was playoff time. Liles would end up in third place.
Hurley and Sheridan are no strangers to playoffs at Matterhorn. In the first year of the tournament, Hurley, as a 11 year old, took 3rd place from Sheridan, then 37, with an aggressive ace on the first hole. Just earlier in the week this year, they had a 15 hole playoff for second place in the weekly league. Prior to that though, Sheridan had to take a few minutes to get the amateur prizes awarded.
This year the amateur division was dominated by Caleb Smith who at 15 set an amateur record of 120 for the 3 rounds along with a record low round score for an amateur of a 38. Caleb's dad Darren came in second with a 128 and Josh Hayes would hang on to finish on the podium by one stroke over Elizabeth Marsh with Hayes shooting a 133. The amateur division were awarded a variety of prizes and paid down to 8th place.
Amateur Division Top 8
With that out of the way, the question was what the playoff for the top spot in the pros would bring. This time around Hurley played more conservatively on the first hole and he and Sheridan matched 2s for the first two holes. On hole three, Hurley caught a crack in the bricks on his first shot leaving a tough second shot which he missed. Sheridan's tee shot fared much better, leaving him a tap in 2 for the win. It was a bit apt that Sheridan won on the hole named "Holey Moley" after his time on Season 1 of the popular American minigolf show.
Sheridan on Hole 11
Sheridan had this to say about this year's tournament, "First I'm very happy that Mandy [Ranslow] forgoed playing in the tournament to help administer the tournament. That helped me focus a bit more on the putting and overall made sure we had another successful tournament. This year saw the most pros we had playing, which is exciting and I hope we can grow on that in 2022.
"As far as my play went, I was a bit surprised I started off as strong as I did. Normally it takes me a bit to get into the groove after the administrative parts, so I was happy it was a hot start. That final round was super stressful with really any of the four of us in that group having a chance to win. When I messed up on 17, I thought I had blown my chance because Jonah was playing really well, especially on hole 18. I really thought I had won it with my second shot on 18 and then needed to reset for that playoff. My goal there was just no mistakes and it played out well for me. I'm very happy to get this trophy on my shelf."
This year The Putting Penguin also sponsored a skins match after the tournament where 4 pros were randomly selected to play a skins round for $10 a hole. Seymour was selected, along with Rice, Vayda and John O'Leary. O'Leary would end up the big winner netting skins of $80 and $20, with Seymour earning a $70 skin and Vayda a $10 skin.