LINCOLNWOOD, Ill. – August 9, 2022 – Roy Biancalana (Blackberry Oaks Golf Club) won the Illinois Senior PGA Professional Championship at Bryn Mawr Country Club on August 9 by four strokes. Biancalana carded rounds of 3-under-par 69 and 2-under-par 70 for a two-day total of 5-under-par 139. He will lead nine Illinois Section PGA Professionals to compete in the 34th Senior PGA Professional Championship at Twin Warriors Golf Club at Hyatt Regency Tamaya Resort and Spa and Santa Ana Golf Club, both in Santa Ana Pueblo, New Mexico on October 13-16, 2022.
“My mindset was to try and stay healthy,” said Biancalana. “I’ve had back spasms the last couple of weeks, and I also sprained my ankle a few months ago. So, I just wanted to stay healthy and I also wanted to stay in the moment and hit the shot that I need to hit. I knew if I just played decently, I would qualify for the National Championship.”
Biancalana started his Championship bid with an impressive first round. The first round featured harsh conditions as rain delayed the start of the Championship twice. Biancalana handled the conditions well and turned in the low score of the day, only carding two bogeys throughout the round.
Biancalana began the final round leading by two strokes. Starting on the back nine, he took advantage of the par-5s making birdies on 13 and 15. He made the turn at 2-under-par for the day, 5-under-par the tournament, and held a three-stroke lead.
In his final nine holes of the Championship, Biancalana capped off a bogey-free round by making nine straight pars on the front side of Bryn Mawr Country Club. Biancalana had good looks throughout his back nine. He had birdie putts on seven of nine holes. Despite not being able to cash in on these opportunities, Biancalana’s short game helped him fend off his fellow Illinois PGA Professionals as he cruised to his victory.
“By about the ninth hole, I was trying to play a round without making any bogeys,” said Biancalana. “I knew par was going to be good for me. My short game saved me today. I did not drive that well, but I was able to get up and down when I had to, and I hit some great lag putts today. This is the first time I’ve ever won this event, and it always feels great to win a Championship.
Biancalana will be joined by Mike Small (University of Illinois), Rich Dukelow (Ridge Country Club), Steve Murray (Forest Hills Country Club) John Varner (Beverly Country Club), Mike Troy (Zigfield Troy), David Paeglow (Kishwaukee Country Club), Danny Mulhearn (Glen Oak Country Club) and David Thompson (Crystal Lake Country Club) at the 34th Senior PGA Professional Championship in October.
Small earned an exemption into the 34th Senior PGA Professional Championship after he finished third in the 33rd Senior PGA Professional Championship.
Dukelow was the only other player this week to break par. He carded rounds of 1-under-par 71 and even-par 72 for a tournament total of 1-under-par 143. Dukelow did his best to challenge Biancalana as he made a strong push on the back nine. After turning at 1-over-par, Dukelow made birdie on the par-5 first hole and on the short par-4 third hole. On the third hole, Dukelow hit his drive to the front of the green and was able to two-putt for birdie to get himself to 2-under-par and three shots off the lead. He left a few shots out there on there and seemed to run out of gas after a bogey on the par-5 fifth hole. He finished with four straight pars, missing birdie putts on six, seven, and eight to finish in solo second place.
Murray finished the Championship in solo third place. He recorded rounds of 1-over-par 73 and 1-under-par 71 for a tournament total of even-par 144. This marked Murray’s best finish at the Illinois Senior PGA Professional Championship.
Varner and Troy finished T4 with tournament totals of 2-over-par 146. In round one, Varner carded an even-par 72 and followed it up with a 2-over-par 74 in round one. Troy fired matching rounds of 1-over-par 73. Varner and Troy both secured the final two qualifying spots that did not need to play off.
Paeglow, Mulhearn, and Thompson were the final three qualifiers for the Illinois PGA, earning their spots in a three-for-six playoff.
The Senior PGA Professional Championship brings together a field of 264 contestants representing the PGA of America’s 41 nationwide Sections and features a total purse of $300,000.
Begun in 1989, the Senior PGA Professional Championship is modeled after the PGA Professional Championship, with a field of 50-and-older senior PGA Professionals who advanced through 41 Section Championships conducted from June through August this year.
The top 35 receive finishers receive exemptions into the 2023 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship, while the top eight also receive exemptions to the 2023 Senior PGA Professional Championship.
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The Illinois Section of the PGA of America is a professional organization serving the men and women golf professionals in northern and central Illinois who are the recognized experts in growing, teaching and managing the game of golf. The Illinois PGA is responsible for the administration of competitive golf tournaments, educational opportunities, support programs and growth of the game initiatives. With over 840 members and apprentices, the Illinois PGA is one of the 41 regional Sections that comprise the PGA of America. The Illinois PGA Foundation focuses its community efforts on promoting the goodwill and growth of the game with an emphasis on activities that benefit youth. Foundation initiatives include: GolfWorks Illinois, Youth-based Scholarship Funds and the Illinois Golf Hall of Fame. For more information about the Illinois PGA and the Illinois PGA Foundation, please visit www.ipga.com and join us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
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Illinois PGA Communications