A Retrospective: Important Dates in New Jersey Golf

A Retrospective: Important Dates in New Jersey Golf

Each month, the NJSGA will feature the work of local author Kevin Casey, who has compiled a look back at historical moments in New Jersey golf. 

Here are some notable April dates in New Jersey’s rich golf history:

By Kevin Casey

April 7-10, 1994, marks the thirtieth anniversary of Jim McGovern’s T-5 finish in the 1994 Masters Invitational, six shots behind Jose Maria Olazabal’s splendid 279. McGovern’s consistent 72-70-71-72-285 (-3) narrowly outpaced several major champions, including Ernie Els, Tom Watson and Ray Floyd. McGovern’s Masters finish is the highest of any born-and-raised-in-NJ product ever, eclipsing Rumson-born, Deal Golf & Country Club head professional Vic Ghezzi’s 1941 T-6. McGovern, born in Teaneck, raised in Oradell, and schooled at Bergen Catholic, today serves as the head professional at White Beeches Golf and Country Club in Haworth.

April 17, 1996 – Chet Sanok, a native of Belleville and one of New Jersey golf’s most remarkable players, passed away at age 77. He won five NJSGA Amateur Championships (1947, ’50, ’54, ’74, and ’75) and the New Jersey Open in 1951 and ’56.  In 1974, he became the only golfer to win both the NJSGA Amateur and the NJSGA Senior Amateur in the same year. In 1975, he won both the MGA Ike Championship and his final State Amateur. In an exhibition match in 1953 at Forsgate Country Club with Ben Hogan, Sanok’s 70 was barely short of Hogan’s 69. To remind you, 1953 was the same year Hogan won the Masters, the U.S. Open, and the British Open.

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