HAMILTON, Mass. – Shawn Warren won the 2019 New England PGA Championship in dramatic, come-from-behind, fashion. If he defends his title in 2020, there will be no comeback to speak of.
Warren will bring a six-stroke lead into the final round of the 100th NEPGA Championship at Myopia Hunt Club on Wednesday after a 4-under par round of 68 on Tuesday. Warren’s 68 was the lowest round of the day, backing up his 1-under par performance at Tedesco Country Club in Round 1 that left him one-stroke behind the 18-hole lead.
Sticking to his game-plan, Warren pieced together a disciplined round at Myopia that included 14 pars. He birdied the par-5 second hole, short par-4 6th and the par-4 13th. His lone bogey of the day came at the 235-yard par-3 3rd hole, but he more than made up for it with an eagle at the par-5 15th.
“I tried to just keep the ball in front of me,” he said. “It definitely is not the type of golf course that normally I feel I have an advantage on, this is more of a position golf course. I thought I just did a nice job today of staying disciplined and taking what the golf course gives you. Maybe not playing as aggressive as I normally would but laying it back more into position golf.”
Warren trailed by three shots on the 16th tee of the final round of the NEPGA Championship last year before making birdie on his final two holes to win by a stroke. Winning Wednesday would make Warren the seventh 3-time Champion in the tournament’s 100-year history.
Scott Johnson, PGA (Oakley CC) shot 1-under par 69 at Tedesco on Tuesday and is in second, trailing Warren by six at 1-over par. Johnson made two birdies and had just one bogey in round two to play his way into the final group.
Steven Daly, PGA (Cape Club of Sharon) sits in a tie for third place at 3-over par after shooting 75 at Myopia on Tuesday, and will join Johnson and Warren in the final group. Daly got off to a hot start with birdies on his first two holes and added another on the 11th to help offset six bogeys on the day.
“It was difficult, but I was able to scramble a little bit and hit a couple of important shots really well that kind of kept it going,” Daly said after his round. “I made a few bogeys but followed them up with a couple birdies which can right the ship a little bit.”
Sixty-six players made the 36-hole cut to advance to the final round on Wednesday. Ten players will earn exemptions into the 2021 PGA Professional National Championship. Rich Berberian, PGA (Vesper CC) and Seul-Ki Hawley, PGA (Winchester CC) already hold exemptions and will not count among the Section’s 10 qualifiers.
Seven players will pocket an extra hundred dollars with the Centennial Skins pool. The Section-sponsored pool paid $100 for any living skin to celebrate the 100th NEPGA Section Championship. Five players won a centennial skin at Myopia, with Matt Arvanitis, Greg Farland and Warren collected with eagles while Greg Yeomans made a birdie on Myopia’s second hole and Mike Haas-Zanghi birdied the 8th to earn a skin. Sean McTernan and Frank Leja each won a centennial skin at Tedesco.
The NEPGA Section Championship would not be possible without the support of presenting partners Omega and Club Car, and Supporting Partners Titleist, Footjoy, TaylorMade, Nike, Mohegan Sun, Avidia Bank and the PGA TOUR.
Thank you to Myopia Hunt Club, which is hosting the centennial championship after staging the inaugural championship back in 1921, and Tedesco Country Club for serving as the gracious hosts for the tournament.