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Patinella Leads Charge In Match Play Prelims

July 22, 2008

By John Stewart

Jack MacDonald (left), a medalist winner in Baltimore Municipal Golf's match play championship, with Mark Paolini, head pro at Clifton Park Golf Course.  (Tom Pierce)
Three first-time entries were among those working their way through two rounds of the 11th annual Match Play Championship of the Baltimore Municipal Golf Corporation at Forest Park July 20.

John Patinella, a 24-year-old Cornell University graduate, may have had the toughest road, as he went 20 holes in the morning to subdue veteran Joe Gittings, then took out Jack MacDonald, another newcomer, who was the medalist, 2 and 1. Patinella had birdied No. 18 to force overtime with Gittings, then won with a par on the second extra hole. In the afternoon, he was never down against MacDonald, who hung tough.

Another who hung tough through two rounds was defending champion Al Medlin. The 24-year-old defeated John Flynn in the morning, 4 and 3, before losing to newcomer Matt Simone, 3 and 2.

Andy Krstanovic, a 23-year-old from Thurmont, was 3-down in the morning after 10 holes, but rallied to birdie the 18th for a 1-up triumph over Neil Shannon, another Frederick County resident. Krstanovic beat Blair Laubach, 2 and 1, in the afternoon. Laubach had been 7-under par in his qualifying round at Clifton Park and his first round, but putts did not drop for him during the next round.

Among the other winners were former champion Tim Osgood, who birdied the 18th for a 1-up afternoon victory over Doug McIlvain, and Rusty McCready, who was 3-down with three to play in the morning, birdied the last three to tie, then parred the first extra hole to oust Kenny Dotter.

Completing the round of eight were Dale Williams, with a pair of 5-and-4 wins, and Kevin McGarvey against another solid veteran in the afternoon, Bob Lentz,
Quarterfinal and semifinal matches will be July 26 at Pine Ridge, and the final will be July 27 at Mount Pleasant.


Chip Sullivan, from Dalesville, Va., broke away from a tie in the middle of his round and went on to a three-stroke victory in the 87th annual Maryland Open Championship at Fountain Head Country Club in Hagerstown July 16.

The pro from Ashley Plantation ended with 69 and a 54-hole total of 3-under-par 207. In the process, he continued his string of winning this event in even-numbered years (2002, 2004, 2006 and 2008) and became the third player in tournament history to collect at least four titles. The others were Al Houghton with four in the 1930s and Charlie Bassler with six in the 1950s and '60s.

"Nine and 10 were the only holes I hit driver and after that I put it back in the bag," Sullivan said of part of his strategy for the Donald Ross-designed gem, which was probably just as deceptive when it was built in 1924 as it is today.

"It is so deceiving," Sullivan said. "I looked up the course details, saw 6,300 yards and was licking my chops. However, it has a lot of subtleties and I learned more each time I played."

Sullivan was making his first start in three weeks. He had injured his left wrist in defending his National Club Pro title, and it was diagnosed as tendinitis.

"I didn't touch a club for two weeks, then did a little practicing," Sullivan said. "I really didn't know what to expect.

 "This course can grab you. There were some tough pins and, if you're not careful, bad things can happen."

Issue 3.30: July 24, 2008