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Thursday, June 8, 2017

Jordan Spieth to make first appearance at Travelers Championship.

Jordan Spieth watches his tee shot on the second hole during the second round of the Memorial golf tournament last Friday. Spieth committed to play in the Travelers Championship Thursday.
Courtesy of the Associated Press

Jordan Spieth, the world’s sixth-ranked player, committed to the tournament Thursday morning for the first time. That’s three in the top six, joining No. 2 Rory McIlroy, also committed for the first time, and No. 3 Jason Day.

The tournament will be held June 22-25 at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell.

Spieth is only 23, but has already won nine times on the PGA Tour, including the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am in February. He won his two majors, the Masters and U.S. Open, in 2015, when he also won the Tour Championship, the FedExCup title and was the top-ranked player in the world.

Travelers also boasts Justin Thomas, a three-time winner on Tour this year and the 13th-ranked player, and No. 18 Patrick Reed, along with two-time champion Bubba Watson, Jim Furyk and former winners Marc Leishman and defending champion Russell Knox.


Thursday, May 25, 2017

Reed, Snedeker, Leishman all returning to Travelers

Three more golfers committed to play in the Travelers Championship next month: Patrick Reed, Brandt Snedeker and Marc Leishman.

Reed, ranked 15th in the world, becomes the fourth player in the top 15 to commit to play, joining Rory McIlroy (2), Jason Day (3) and Justin Thomas (11). Reed has five PGA Tour wins, including the Barclays in last year’s FedExCup playoffs. But he is probably best known for beating McIlroy in Ryder Cup singles play last fall to help the United States win back the Cup.

Reed tied for 11th last year at the Travelers, his best finish in five starts.

Snedeker also has played TPC River Highlands five previous times, his best finish a tie for 10th place in 2015. The 2012 winner of the FedExCup championship, Snedeker has eight PGA Tour wins to his credit and is ranked 32nd in the world.

Leishman, ranked 36th, won the Travelers in 2012, his first tour victory. His second came at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March.


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Evanier, Rainaud advance to U.S. Open sectional qualifying

Jeff Evanier of Clinton shot a 4-under-par 66 at Wintonbury Hills Golf Course Tuesday to earn medalist laurels at local qualifying for the 117th U.S. Open Championship.

Evanier was one of five golfers who advanced to sectional qualifying on June 5.

Adam Rainaud of Chester shot a 3-under 67. Rainaud, formerly an assistant pro at the Black Hall Club in Old Lyme, is now an assistant at Winged Foot in Mamaroneck, New York.

The other three spots came out of a six-man playoff. Advancing were Eric Dietrich of Cheshire, Cody Paladino of Kensington and Evan Russell of Stowe, Vermont. All shot 68.

Brent Paladino, Cody’s older brother, is the first alternate and Kevin Riley (New City, N.Y.) is the second alternate. Jordan Gosler of Manchester was also eliminated in the sudden-death playoff.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Gettings relished chance to play in first Challenge Cup; Section pros beat Amateurs again

HAMDEN >> For almost two full decades, Steve Gettings has been a top-flight amateur golfer playing out of Orange Hills Country Club, where he has won multiple club championships.

Although he has played in his share of Connecticut State Golf Association events throughout that time, Gettings didn’t have his best season until last year. Among those results was a third-place finish in the State Public Links event.

“I want to win a tournament,” Gettings said. “I’ve played with a lot of the kids now. Now I know I can play with them at any given tournament.”

Maybe that victory will come this season for Gettings. Last year’s results got him into the 46th edition of the Julius Boros Challenge Cup matches played Thursday at New Haven CC. Gettings lost his singles match to James Giampaolo as the Connecticut Section pros defeated the CSGA Amateurs 37.5-22.5 for their sixth straight win in the series.

“I’ve hit balls every day into my net always dreaming about making a team like this,” said Gettings, 40. “This is the culmination of the entire last year. You have to earn your spot, it’s not who knows who. There’s also the prestige of being on the team.”

CT Section pros defeat CSGA Amateurs 37.5-22.5
(at New Haven CC)

Match 1: Bill Hermanson (Black Hall Club) def. Fran Marrello (Canaan CC); Dave Szewczul (Tunxis Plantation CC) def. Dave Dell (Springfield CC), Hermanson-Szewczul def. Marrello-Dell

Match 2: Kevin Giancola (Golf Quest) def. Kevin Josephson (Indian Hill CC); Brian Ahern (Wampanoag CC) def. Frank Leja (Crestview CC); Giancola-Leja halved best ball match with Josephson-Ahern.

Match 3: Jordan Gosler (Manchester CC) def. Jason Jaworski (Shorehaven CC); Billy Downes (Great Horse) def. Shep Stevens (New Haven CC); Gosler-Downes def. Jaworski-Stevens.

Match 4: Mike Martin (Clubs to Go) def. Monte Mullen (TPC River Highlands); Kyle Nolin (Tallwood CC) def. Donny Kirkpatrick (Wampanoag CC) Mullen-Nolin def. Martin-Kirkpatrick.

Match 5: James Giampaolo (Hawks Landing CC) def. Steve Gettings (Orange Hills CC); Tony Kelley (Wyckoff CC) def. David Giulietti (GC of Avon); Giampaolo-Kelley def. Gettings-Giuletti.

Match 6: Bill Wallis (New Haven CC) def. Chet Hrostek (Oxford Greens GC); Brent Dietz (Cedar Knob GC) def. William Street (Whitney Farms CC); Hrostek-Dietz def. Wallis-Street.

Match 7: Chris Maxwell (CC of Farmington) def. Marc Bayram (Timberlin GC); Ian Marshall (Watertown GC) def. John Sawka (Ellington Ridge CC); Bayram-Marshall def. Maxwell-Sawka.

Jason Day returning to play in Travelers Championship

Jason Day tees off the eight HOLE during the second round of the PGA Zurich Classic golf tournament last week. Day will play in the Travelers Championship in June.

The good news just keeps on coming in what is shaping up to be the best field the Travelers Championship has ever had.
Jason Day is the latest big name to commit to playing in the Travelers Championship in June. Day, the former PGA Championship winner, is ranked No. 3 in the world golf rankings.
Nathan Grube, the Travelers Championship tournament director, said Day’s commitment came “around lunch time” on Wednesday.
“We knew it was coming. We’ve had really good conversations with Jason,” Grube said Thursday morning.
That now makes three players from the top 10 in the latest world golf rankings in the field: Rory McIlroy at No. 2, Day at No. 3 and Justin Thoma at No. 10.

Day, who has spent a lot of time ranked No. 1, won the PGA Championship back in 2015. He’s played the TPC River Highlands course in Cromwell twice, finishing tied for 18th in 2014 and tied for 27th in 2008.


Monday, March 27, 2017

Thomas, Johnson added to list of Travelers commitments

The Travelers Championship has added its second player in the top 10 of the current world rankings when the tournament announced Monday that Justin Thomas has committed to play the event in June.

Thomas has already won three times on the PGA Tour this season, including both the SBS Tournament of Champions and Sony Open in January. At Sony, he opened with a 59. Thomas currently stands third in the FedExCup standings, is eighth in the world rankings and tied for third in last year’s Travelers after a final round 8-under-par 62.

Zach Johnson also committed to play the Travelers June 22-25 at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell. Johnson, currently 50th in the world rankings, has two major championships among his 12 PGA Tour victories: the 2007 Masters and the 2015 British Open. His best finish at Travelers is a tie for third.

Thomas and Johnson already joining second-ranked Rory McIlroy and former Travelers winners Bubba Watson (ranked 18th) and Russell Knox (23rd), the defending champion.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Watson, Knox returning to play Travelers Championship

Exactly two weeks after announcing Rory McIlroy would play for the first time, the Travelers Championship announced Friday that former champions Bubba Watson and Russell Knox have joined him.

Watson won the event in 2010, his first victory on the PGA Tour, and in 2015. He was ranked as high as No. 4 last year but now the former two-time Masters champion is 16th in the world rankings.

Knox, currently 21st in the world rankings, birdied the 18th hole last year to win the championship at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell. It was Knox’s second victory on Tour.

Tickets for this year’s event, to be held June 22-25, go on sale Wednesday. For more information on this year’s tournament, visit

Friday, February 24, 2017

McIlroy coming to play the Travelers Championship

FILE - In this Oct. 27, 2016 file photo, Rory McIlroy, of Northern Ireland, hits a tee shot during the WGC-HSBC Champions golf tournament at the Sheshan International Golf Club in Shanghai, China. McIlroy is targeting the Mexico Championship in March as his return to tournament action from injury.  McIlroy aggravated a rib stress fracture while finishing runner-up at the SA Open in Gauteng two weekends ago. Those injuries typically take about six weeks to heal, and he believes he’ll be ready to play again in the first World Golf Championship of the year, from March 2-5. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan, File)
The Travelers Championship announced Friday morning that Rory McIlroy, the world’s third-ranked golfer, will be playing in the Travelers Championship in June.

The news was first reported by Brian Wacker from Golf Digest early this morning.

This is the first time McIlroy, 27, will play in the Travelers. He has won four major championships, including two PGA Championships.

“I’m delighted that the Travelers Championship is part of my schedule this year. It’ll be such a great experience,” McIlroy said in a statement released by the Travelers. “The course should really set up well for my game and I’m really looking forward to teeing it up there in June against some of the tour’s best players.

Travelers Championship tournament director Nathan Grube said the first time he had an inkling that McIlory may be interested in coming was last spring at the Players Championship.

I’m incredibly excited,” Grube said. “We’ve been talking to (McIlroy’s agent) enough the last six, seven, eight months. Going back to June gave us a chance (to get him). We’re thrilled to see it come together.”

The Travelers was held in August last year when the entire PGA Tour summer schedule was altered due to the 2016 Summer Olympics. This year's tournament will be held

McIlroy is currently recuperating from a rib fracture he suffered in January. He is scheduled to return at next week’s WGC-Mexico Championship.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Gleeton, Hedden entering Connecticut Golf Hall of Fame Thursday

Tom Gleeton and Jeff Hedden will be inducted into the Connecticut Golf Hall of Fame Thursday at Manchester Country Club.

Gleeton, a Cheshire native and resident, played full time on the PGA Tour in 1986 and has won more than 70 professional events, including the Connecticut Section PGA Stroke Play Championship five times, The Section’s Match Play and the Connecticut PGA Championship. He’s also been named the Section’s Player of the Year.

Gleeton just completed a quarter century as the head professional at Country Club of Waterbury. He is a past president of the Connecticut Section, has spent many years directing mentor programs for assistant golf pros and was inducted into the Connecticut Section Hall of Fame in 2014.

Hedden, a stellar amateur player formerly out of the Black Hall Club in Old Lyme was the CSGA Player of the Year for three straight years (2008-10), won the Connecticut Open (2008), the New England Amateur (2011), the Connecticut Amateur (2002), the Connecticut Mid-Amateur (2002, 2005-06 and 2009) and the Connecticut Junior Amateur (1980-81).

Hedden also qualified for the U.S. Amateur twice (2002-03) and the U.S. Mid-Amateur six times (2002-05, 2007, 2009). He now lives in Hilton Head, South Carolina.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Travelers Championship raises record $2.8 million towards charity

The Travelers Championship announced Tuesday it generated more than $2.8 million for charity at this year’s event held last August.

It’s the highest amount in the history of the tournament, which began in 1952. The record-setting number was boosted by the Bruce Edwards Foundation Benefit Dinner, held on Aug. 5, which raised more than $1.3 million.

According to a release put out by Travelers, this year’s fund-raising effort brings the total money distributed since Travelers became title sponsor in 2007 to nearly $13 million. More than 600 charities have received funds from the tournament over that time.

This year’s primary beneficiary was the ALS Clinic at the Hospital for Special Care in New Britain. ALS-specific causes was the focus this year after the 2015 announcement that Jay Fishman, the former executive chairman and chief executive officer of Travelers, had been diagnosed with the disease.

The dinner attracted more than 800 people to the Connecticut Convention Center, with all proceeds going toward ALS research. Fishman died on Aug. 19.