FLOURTOWN, Pa. — Grant Sturgeon of Port Chester, New York, made a 15-foot par-saving putt on the 18th hole for a 1-under-par 69, catching struggling Ben Polland of Manhasset, New York, and force a tie Tuesday after three rounds of the 48th PGA Professional National Championship.
The showcase event for PGA Professionals was interrupted for 92 minutes at The Philadelphia Cricket Club due to severe weather in the area. Once play resumed, a Metropolitan PGA Section duel evolved on the Wissahickon Course. Sturgeon, a PGA Assistant Professional at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York, chased down Polland, a PGA Assistant Professional at Deepdale Golf Club in Manhasset, who hit only eight fairways on his way to a 73.
The twosome had faced each other before in last year’s PGA Assistant Championship, with Sturgeon rallying for the title. They are deadlocked at 4-under-par 208 after 54 holes, and a stroke ahead of 2012 PGA Professional National Champion Matt Dobyns of Glen Head, New York, who closed with a 68 and 209 total.
The three Oklahoma PGA pros in the tournament all missed the 54-hole cut. Mark Fuller of The Golf Club at Surrey Hills was a shot back of the cut line after rounds of 78-67-76. Pat Bates of Gaillardia Country Club shot a 78 in the third round to miss the cut by four, while Michael Boyd of The Club at Indian Springs struggled to an 81 to miss by five.
The field was trimmed to the low 70 scorers and ties, with 78 making the 54-hole cut of 8-over-par 220, and will compete for a total purse of $550,000 in a Championship presented by Club Car, Mercedes-Benz and OMEGA. The low 20 will earn spots in the PGA Championship in August at Whistling Straights in Kohler, Wisconsin.