In one of his most superior performances of the year, Rob Labritz dominated the field in the Metropolitan Professional Championship this week at Fairview CC and the Golf Club of Purchase. His seven-stroke margin of victory capped three days of exemplary play marked by laser-accurate irons and a near-perfect putter.
Quaker Ridge GC’s Brian Gaffney made a solid run during the final round, posting a bogey-free tournament-low 65 to bring him solidly into second place. Labritz’s 68-66-68 was far out of reach by then, however. Ben Polland of Deepdale placed third while James Ondo of Apawamis and Anthony Casalino from Innis Arden tied for fourth.
The win is the fourth of the season for Labritz, who is the 45-year-old director of golf at GlenArbor CC in Bedford Hills. He also topped the fields in the Westchester PGA Championship, the Westchester Open, and the New York State Open.
More than just the $8,500 winner’s check was at stake in this tournament. The top 12 players gained entry into the 2017 PGA Professional Championship, which in turn is a chance to qualify for the 2017 PGA Championship at Quail Hollow. Labritz, Gaffney, Polland, and Tam O’Shanter’s Mark Brown were exempt from qualifying due to their top-20 finishes in the 2016 PGA Professional Championship.
In addition to Ondo, other Westchester players qualifying were Kent St. Charles of Willow Ridge CC, Carl Alexander and Patrick Langan of Golf Club of Purchase, Grant Sturgeon from Winged Foot GC, and Tyler Jaramillo of Saint Andrew’s.