Bethpage Black to Host the 95th N.Y.S Men's Amateur Championship
SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- For the first time in fifty years, the New York State Men’s Amateur Championship is headed back to Long Island. The world-renowned Bethpage State Park Black Course will host this year’s championship from August 8-10.
It will be the 95th edition of the venerable amateur golf championship which has recently been held at a few noteworthy upstate courses including Schenectady’s Mohawk Golf Club in 2016, Kaluhyat Golf Club at Turning Stone Resort in 2015, and Syracuse’s Bellevue Country Club in 2014.
The enthusiasm among tournament players and association staff is at an all-time high as this will be the first time the Men’s Amateur will make its way to Bethpage since the tournament’s humble beginnings in 1923. “It’s been a goal of mine since I started at the NYSGA to bring the Men’s Amateur back to Long Island and find a course that would generate a high level of excitement,” said Andrew Hickey, Assistant Executive Director of the NYSGA. “This will be an incredible championship not only because of the venue, Bethpage Black, but also because of our partnership with the management team at the Bethpage State Park.”
Each year, hundreds of amateur male golfers attempt to qualify for the championship. After the process of holding a dozen sectional qualifiers throughout the early summer and exempting a small group of qualified individuals, the field is eventually narrowed to 156 players. The tournament format is 72 holes of stroke play throughout three days, with 36 holes on the final day of competition.
The last time this championship was held in Long Island was in 1967 at Nassau Country Club, won by local and distinguished amateur golfer John Baldwin. Over the years, quite a few other prominent Long Island amateur golfers have claimed the title when the tournament was held in the region. This year’s championship will present a great opportunity for the many talented amateur golfers in New York’s Metropolitan area to compete on an impressive, close-to-home venue.
Entries are still open to male amateur golfers who are members of the NYSGA with an up-to-date Handicap Index not exceeding 7.4, issued by a golf club which is licensed to use the USGA Handicap System. All players must submit their entry prior to the tournament’s entry deadline on Friday, June 16, 2017. Players may register online through the NYSGA website (www.nysga.org). Entries submitted via mail, email or fax will not be accepted. Please call the NYSGA offices with any questions at (315) 471-1372.
About Bethpage State Park’s Black Course
A.W. Tillinghast’s legendary design boasts a tough, 7,465-yard track complete with tight fairways, high rough, well-placed bunkers and small, fast greens. It is the most difficult of the five park courses and known as one of the longer and more challenging courses in the country. In recent years, it has become a popular choice among many of the most acclaimed professional golf tournaments around. The trend began in 2002 when the USGA hosted the first US Open on a public venue (won by Tiger Woods) and then returned for a second time in 2009 (won by Lucas Glover). The Barclays was played there in 2012, 2016 and is set to continue its streak on the site in 2021 and 2027. In 2019, the course will host the PGA Championship and the Ryder Cup in 2024, both for the first time.
NYS Men’s Amateur Championships in Long Island
The inaugural NYS Men’s Amateur Championship took place in Long Island area when Garden City Golf Club volunteered to host the event almost a century ago. On October 24, 1923, sixty-one competitors teed off for a chance to be the first name etched onto the prestigious Ganson Depew Cup, that now proudly displays 94 New York state men’s amateur champions. The eventual winner of that first championship, in a match play format, was Edmund Driggs. Jr. Over the 95-year history, the NYS Men’s Amateur Championship has been held in Long Island on five occasions including Garden City CC in ’23 and ‘33, Lido CC in ‘25, Lakeville CC in 30’, Siwanoy CC in ‘39 and Nassau CC in ’67.