College of Golf June 2017 Events

Keiser University College of Golf Students Participate in Historic Hickory Open Putting Championship

Keiser University’s College of Golf (COG) History of Golf class students recently had the unique opportunity to participate in a putting competition using hickory-shafted putters and golf balls from different historical eras, beginning in the early 1800’s and progressing through modern day.

Organized by professor Ken Martin along with College of Golf Executive Director of Golf Operations Dr. Eric Wilson the event began at the Outdoor Putting Green as Martin and Wilson explained each of the six different putting stations. It culminated as an 18-hole competition with students putting three-hole segments using each of the following:

· Long nose putter and featherie golf ball (pre-1848)
· Kempshall Pyraline putter and smooth gutta percha golf ball (1848-1850)
· Wry-neck blade putter and hand-hammered gutta percha golf ball (1850-1865)
· Brown-Vardon semi-mallet head putter and bramble pattern gutta percha golf ball (1865-1900)
· Spalding Hollow-Back putter and balata covered golf ball (1900-1960)
· Personal putter and Pro V-1 golf balls (1960-modern day)

Par for the course was 36, and the first Champion Putter of the Historic Open Putting Championship was student Ian Yee, who scored 40, which included the first hole-in-one of the competition on the Hollow-Back/balata station. Finishing second by a single stroke were students David Johnson and Chris Rooney. The remainder of the field results follow: Clark Ditzhazy (42), Professor Brian Hughes (42), Charlie Wych (43), Professor David Wixson (44), Timothy Childrose (45), Daniel Ruhlin (46), and D’Andre Kinney (47). Timothy Childrose provided additional excitement when he made a hole-in-one on the Long nose/featherie station. Champion Yee claimed pictures with the Open Claret Jug replica and American flag belt for his victory.

Future History of Golf class students will continue to enjoy the competition, and they too will have their plaques added to the base of the Open Claret Jug replica to commemorate their victories.

History of Golf Hickory Putting Open Class Group Photo

L-R: Dr. Wilson, Clark Dithazy, Charlie Wych, Left: Ian Yee, D’AndreKinney, Tim Childrose, Chris Rooney, David Johnson, Dan Ruhlin, Professor Martin

Ian Yee holding Long Nose Putter, featherie golf ball, Claret Jug Replica, and wearing the American flag champion's belt. Right: Dr Eric Wilson representing the trophy.

Ian Yee holding Long Nose Putter, featherie golf ball, Claret Jug Replica, and wearing the American flag champion’s belt. Right: Dr Eric Wilson representing the trophy.

Ian Yee Kissing Trophy

Champion Ian Yee kissing the Claret Jug

Ken Martin and Tim Childrose photo

Left: Professor Ken Martin, Right: Tim Childrose holding Long-nose Putter and featherie golf ball

Keiser University College of Golf Students
Volunteer for Drive, Chip and Putt Qualifying Event

Students of Keiser University’s College of Golf Short Game class led by professor Frank Longabucco and Mental Game class led by professor David Wixson recently volunteered for the local qualifying event of the Drive, Chip and Putt Competition at the PGA Center for Golf Learning and Performance located in Port Saint Lucie, Florida.

The Keiser University volunteer group was involved in all aspects of the competition from set-up and scoring to station management and break-down. “Students gained real-world, practical experience in running a high-profile event and enjoyed the experience, especially working with the kids,” said Professor Longabucco.

Eighty boys and girls between the ages of 7 and 15 competed in five divisions, with the top three finishers in each division advancing to the Sub-Regional Qualifying event to be held later this month in Orlando.

The Drive, Chip and Putt Championship is a joint initiative founded by the PGA of America, the United States Golf Association, and the Masters Tournament. The Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals will be held April 1, 2018 at Augusta National Golf Club.

Vasquez Johnson Scott Wych photo

L-R: Students Noel Vasquez, David Johnson, Willie Scott, and Charlie Wych

Wych photo

Student Charlie Wych scoring the event

Rooney photo

Student Chris Rooney

Keiser University COG History of Golf Students Enjoy Hickory Golf Lesson
Ten first semester History of Golf students at Keiser University’s College of Golf recently enjoyed a round of Hickory Golf using hickory shafted golf clubs along with professors and PGA Professionals Brian Hughes, David Wixson, Frank Longabucco, and John Callahan. Professor Ken Martin had the students and PGA Professionals dress in period clothing, and they all used mid-irons, mashies, niblicks, and putters with hickory shafts to play the par-72 Champ Course at the PGA National Resort and Spa.
Playing in a “Scramble” format, the team of PGA Master Professional Brian Hughes and students Charlie Wych, Willie Scott, and Clark Ditzhazy, fired a record score of 9-under par 63 to win the competition. Keiser University Flagship Campus Golf Coach Brandon Miller donated a “gold” cup for the winner’s prize, and the team will have their names engraved on a plaque affixed to its base.
PGA Professional John Callahan, Ian Yee, and Daniel Ruhlin finished second with a score of 7-under par 65; PGA Master Professional David Wixson, D’Andre Kinney, and Noel Vazquez were third with a 3-under par 69; and PGA Professional Frank Longabucco, Chris Rooney, David Johnson, and Sophia Merriam finished at 1-under par 71.
The opportunity to use replica golf clubs from the 1920’s provided the students an appreciation for the skills and abilities of golf’s greats of the era. Champions such as Walter Hagen, Bobby Jones, Gene Sarazen, and Long Jim Barnes all shot incredible scores and won major championships using hickory shafted golf clubs. Overall, the experience was enlightening and fun!
Hickory Group photo 6 14 17

L-R: Noel Vazquez, Brian Hughes, Clark Ditzhazy, D’Andre Kinney, Chris Rooney, Willie Scott, Ken Martin, David Wixson, Ian Yee, Charlie Wych, John Callahan, Sophia Merriam, David Johnson, Daniel Ruhlin, Frank Longabucco

Hickory Winners 6 14 17

L-R: Winners Charlie Wych, Willie Scott, Clark Ditzhazy, Brian Hughes

Hickory Bear Trap Plaque 6 14 17

PGA National Resort & Spa “Bear Trap” Plaque

Hickory Bear Trap Wixson 6 14 17

L-R: Charlie Wych, Clark Ditzhazy, Willie Scott, Brian
Hughes at “The Bear Trap”

Hickory Bear Trap Callahan 6 14 17

L-R: John Callahan, Daniel Ruhlin, Ian Yee at “The Bear Trap”

Hickory Bear Trap Longabucco 6 14 17

L-R: Chris Rooney, Frank Longabucco, Sophia Merriam at “The Bear Trap”


Hickory Bear Trap Wixson 6 14 17

L-R: Noel Vazquez, D’Andre Kinney, David Wixson at “The Bear Trap”






Keiser University College of Golf Tournament Supports Cystic Fibrosis

Keiser University professors and PGA professionals Frank Longabucco and David Wixson recently hosted a golf tournament in which 11 of their Short Game Fundamentals and Mental Approach to Golf class students participated.
Held to benefit Cystic Fibrosis, the tournament was played at the PGA National Resort and Spa Fazio Golf Course.
The winner of the Stableford event was Chris Rooney with a sterling score of 33 points. PGA Professional Frank Longabucco, who organized the tournament, stated, “These tournaments give the students some needed experience playing golf where every shot counts and will help prepare them for their PGA Playing Ability Test.”
Longabucco plans to conduct more events moving forward. The tournament brought the College of Golf total donations for Cystic Fibrosis to over $250 so far this year.

Rooney photo

Student Chris Rooney

If you would like to participate in events like these, consider attending College of Golf for a golf management degree.