Block Party: California pro wins PGA title in a playoff

pga-blockMichael Block of Aliso Viejo, California, sank a three-foot birdie putt on the second extra hole Wednesday to capture the 47th PGA Professional National Championship at The Dunes Golf & Beach Club in Myrtle Beach.

By virtue of the win, Block leads a group of 20 PGA Professionals to the 96th PGA Championship, Aug.7-10, at Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville, Kentucky.

Block, 38, won the National Championship in his first appearance, but needed extra holes to complete his comeback against second- and third-day leader Jim Broce. Block finished with an even-par 72 and a 2-under-par 286 total.

The PGA head professional at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Club in Mission Viejo, Calif., Block will be making his first appearance in the PGA Championship. Block is the second member of the Southern California PGA Section to capture the National Championship, following Jeff Freeman in 1999.

The following PGA Professionals will join Block at the 96th PGA Championship:

– Jamie Broce of Ottawa Hills, Ohio, representing the University of Toledo

– Rob Corcoran of Melbourne, Florida, representing Poxabogue Golf Center in Bridgehampton, New York

– Stuart Deane of Arlington, Texas, representing Golf Center of Arlington

– Frank Esposito Jr. of Monroe Township, New Jersey, representing Brooklake Country Club in Florham Park, N.J.

– Ryan Helminen of Menasha, Wisconsin, representing Ridgeway Country Club in Neenan, Wisconsin

– David Hronek of North Port, Florida, representing Countryside Country Club in Clearwater, Fla.

– Johan Kok of Brentwoood, Tennessee, representing Temple Hills Country Club in Brentwood

– Aaron Krueger of Norwalk, Iowa, representing Wakonda Club in Des Moines, Iowa

– Jim McGovern of Oradell, New Jersey, representing White Beeches Golf & Country Club in Haworth, N.J.

– David McNabb of Newark, Delaware, representing Applebrook Golf Club Malvern, Pa.

– Brian Norman of The Colony, Texas, representing The Lakes at Castle Hills in Lewisville, Texas

– Rod Perry of Port Orange, Florida, representing Crane Lakes Golf & Country Club in Port Orange

– Matt Pesta of Wixom, Michigan, representing Lincoln Hills Golf Course in Birmingham, Mich.

– Steve Schneiter of Sandy, Utah, representing Schneiter’s Pebble Brook in Sandy

– Jerry Smith of Scottsdale, Arizona, representing Backtee Sports Inc. in Garden Grove, California

– Bob Sowards of Dublin, Ohio, representing New Albany (Ohio) Country Club

– David Tentis of Woodbury, Minnesota, representing Troy Burne Golf Club in Hudson, Wisconsin

– Dustin Volk of Layton, Utah, representing Valley View Golf Course in Layton

– Eric Williamson of Shoal Creek, Alabama, representing Shoal Creek Country Club in Alabama

Photo by Montana Pritchard, PGA

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