The Metropolitan Amateur Golf Association tournament tees off this month, but before hitting those figurative links, let’s revisit last year’s top MAGA players, shall we?
For the second year straight, Sam Midgal of Ballwin earned the association’s Men’s Player of the Year honor. He also numbered among MAGA’s 2017 Players of the Year in a ceremony at Ladue’s Old Warson Country Club.
Migdal continued his 2016 season by commencing ’17 with a victory in the 2017 Old Warson Cup in May. His hot start to the season continued at the U.S. Open Qualifying, where he advanced to sectionals. He thereafter finished runner-up at the Missouri State Amateur, vying for back-to-back titles.
Migdal qualified for his second USGA championship last July at Alton, Illinois’ Spencer T. Olin Golf Course in the U.S. Amateur Qualifier. His 2017 campaign continued with the title in the Missouri Stroke Play Championship. In Migdal’s last event to earn points, the Metropolitan Amateur Championship, he survived the cut to ensure inclusion among the 2017 Players of the Year.
Jeff Johnson, meanwhile, earned his fourth Senior Player of the Year Award, having previously landed it in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Johnson’s strong play began at the Normandie Amateur, where he was second low senior. He tied for low senior at the East Side Amateur and made match play at the Missouri State Amateur. Johnson also numbered among the three seniors to survive the cut at the Metropolitan Amateur Championship and finished tied for 13th place at the Metropolitan Senior.
A ninth-place finish in the St. Louis District Golf Association’s Senior Championship set Johnson up to make a run at the Senior Player of the Year title going into the Missouri Senior Championship. A tie-for-fourth finish on his home course, St. Charles’ Bogey Hills Country Club, in the MGA Senior locked up the 2017 Senior Player of the Year race.
Elsewhere, St. Albans’ Kathy Glennon has enjoyed a few great years on the links, having won the Missouri Women’s Golf Association’s Senior Player of the Year in 2016. This season, Glennon captured the MWGA Mid-Amateur title, qualified for the U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur and was chosen to represent Missouri on the USGA Women’s State Team Championship. She tied for 18th in the MWGA Amateur Championship at the Algonquin Golf Club and, after leading the first round of the Metropolitan Women’s, finished tied for fourth for the championship. Glennon completed her summer by winning the St. Louis Women’s District Invitational title.
The MAGA’s highest honor in 2017 went to Bob Phillips, who earned the Meritorious Service Award for his 24-plus years of service and commitment to the association and amateur golf in the area. Phillips began volunteering with MAGA when, as president of north St. Louis County’s Norwood Hills Country Club, he sought a USGA championship for the club. Phillips went to Tom O’Toole Jr. (an area golf supporter and a founding member of the law firm of Mickes O’Toole, LLC) and started securing the 2001 USGA Senior Amateur Championship. He’s best-known for his position at the first tee as a starter for a majority of these years.
MAGA 2018 Tournaments
For its 2018 championship schedule, the MAGA features another solid slate of venues.
In 2017, the association moved the Metropolitan Open Championship to June, where it remains this year. The Country Club of St. Albans, the annual host for 12 years, will welcome golf professionals nationwide to again compete for a $25,000 first prize June 6 to 8.
In August, the top amateurs from the region will tackle the Lewis and Clark Course, as St. Albans will play host to the 28th Metropolitan Amateur Championship. St. Albans hosted the championship once previously, in 1994, when Jim Holtgrieve captured his amateur title. Shawn Jasper will defend his title where he twice hoisted the James Manion Trophy as the open champion.
The ladies will visit Sunset Country Club June 20 and 21 to compete in the 26th Women’s Amateur Championship. McKenna Montgomery, the defending champion, won the title at Sunset Hills Country Club in 2017.
Area juniors will visit Forest Hills Country Club July 16 and 17 to compete in the 19th Junior Amateur Championship. Max Kreikemeier and Claire Solovic captured the boys and girls championships, respectively, in 2017.
St. Louis area seniors will compete at Weldon Spring’s Persimmon Woods Golf Club Aug. 27 and 28 in the 26th Senior Amateur Championship. Jim Holtgrieve won the 2017 title at St. Louis County’s Westborough Country Club.
The Four-Ball Championship will make its way to St. Charles’ Old Hickory Golf Club Oct. 12. Michael Fowler and Nick Profancik earned the open title at the Algonquin in 2017, while Larry Laramie and Doug Williams captured the net title in a playoff.
The 32nd Normandie Amateur will take place in its annual slot the weekend before Memorial Day weekend, May 19 and 20, while the East Side Amateur will move to July (with the open staying in June) – specifically, July 14 and 15 at the Spencer T. Olin.