Men's Golf: Kania Makes History by Winning 107th Joseph H. Patterson Cup

Aug. 15, 2009

 

HAVERTOWN, Pa. -- Finishing the 36-hole tournament at 2-under-par, three shots ahead of the field, Kentucky golf junior James Kania won the 107th Joseph H. Patterson Cup on Friday at the Llanerch Country Club.

Kania, a native of Haverford, Pa., led going into the final round of competition by four strokes and although he didn't [lay his best golf in the final round, the junior would not relinquish the lead. Kania’s opening-round 66 is believed to be the Llanerch’s competitive course record, according to the Golf Association of Philadelphia Web site. The junior posted a 74 on the second day of competition.

The win brings historical value not only because of the impressive low opening round, but the win marks the first time in tournament history a father-son combination has won the tournament which began in 1900. James’ father, James Kania Sr., won the Patterson Cup in 1995. The two also become the first father-son combo to each receive the Silver Cross award in GAP history. The Silver Cross award is given to the player who posts the lowest aggregate score in the qualifying rounds of the Amateur Championship and the Patterson Cup. James Kania Sr., won the Silver Cross in 1992, 1994 and 1995.

“That’s probably the best part of it, just to share it with my dad,” Kania told gapgolf.org after the tournament. “We’ve been working at this game for a long time. He’s always been there to help me. Since I was a little kid he has taught me everything. I’ve never had a lesson from anyone. He’s always been my everything for me in this game. I wanted to join him on the Amateur trophy in June but that didn’t work out. To come out here and do it in this event is definitely sweet.”

The wins also puts Kania into first place in the GAP Player of the Year standings. Currently, Kania stands 150 points better than Conrad Von Borsig, who beat Kania in the Amateur Championship finals earlier this summer.

Earlier in the week, Kania played in the 93rd Pennsylvania Open Championship at famed Oakmont Country Club. The junior finished tied for fourth with a 54-hole total of 222 in the amateur division and tied for 14th overall. Kania started the tournament with a 9-over-par 80 but rebounded well by finishing even-par the final two rounds to claim the top-five amateur finish.

Kania’s teammate and fellow Pennsylvania native Brian Belden had a very impressive outing at the Open, finishing tied for third in the amateur division and eighth overall. Belden, who was a U.S. Public Links Alternate earlier this summer, posted one of the lowest rounds of the tournament on Wednesday with his final round 2-under-par 69. The junior from Emmaus, Pa., ended the tournament with a total score of 219.

Belden played in six rounds last year for the Wildcats, posting a season stroke average of 76.33. Belden’s best round of the year – and of his career – came in the Mason Rudolph Intercollegiate held in Franklin, Tenn., where Belden shot a 69 in the final round to claim a tie for 31st place.