By John Dever
PGA of America
Ryan Vermeer of Omaha, Nebraska, who won the 2018 PGA Professional Championship on Wednesday (June 20), will lead a contingent of 20 PGA Professionals to the 100th PGA Championship, August 9-12, at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis.
A 40-year-old Director of Instruction at Happy Hollow Club in Omaha, Vermeer will be playing in his second consecutive PGA Championship.
Bob Sowards of Dublin, Ohio, will be the most experienced of the 20 PGA Professionals in St. Louis, as he will be participating in his 10th career PGA Championship, but his first since 2015.
Danny Balin of Rockville, Maryland; Michael Block of Aliso Viejo, California; Craig Bowden of Bloomington, Indiana; Omar Uresti of Austin, Texas; and Shawn Warren of Cape Elizabeth, Maine, earned the final five PGA Championship exemptions available this week, as they emerged from a tense nine-player playoff that lasted seven holes.
Uresti and Matt Dobyns of Glen Head, New York are tied the longest active streak among PGA Professionals. Both will be playing in their fourth straight PGA Championship at Bellerive.
Seven of the 20 PGA Club Professionals at Bellerive in August will be making their PGA Championship debuts, while six others return after playing in last year’s PGA Championship at Quail Hollow.
|PLAYER||HOMETOWN||CLUB/FACILITY||PGA SECTION||PGA CHAMPIONSHIP EXPERIENCE|
|Danny Balin||Rockville, Md.||Westchester C.C.||Metropolitan||2010-13|
|Rich Berberian Jr.||Hooksett, N.H.||Vesper C.C.||New England||2016-17|
|Michael Block||Aliso Viejo, Calif.||Arroyo Trabuco G.C.||Southern California||2014, '16|
|Matt Borchert||Windermere, Fla.||Isleworth C.C.||North Florida||None|
|Craig Bowden||Bloomington, Ind.||PGA Lifetime Member||Indiana||None|
|Matt Dobyns||Glen Head, N.Y.||Fresh Meadow C.C.||Metropolitan||2012, ‘15-17|
|Jaysen Hansen||Solon, Ohio||Beechmont C.C.||Northern Ohio||2017|
|Craig Hocknull||Gilbert, Ariz.||Saber Sports Trainer & Glenild G.C.||Southwest||None|
|Marty Jertson||Phoenix, Ariz.||Ping Golf, Inc.||Southwest||2011-12|
|Zach Johnson||Farmington, Utah||Davis Park Golf Course||Utah||None|
|Ben Kern||Abilene, Texas||Diamondback G.C.||Northern Texas||None|
|Johan Kok||Nashville, Tenn.||Discovery Land Company||Tennessee||2014-16|
|Sean McCarty||Solon, Iowa||Brown Deer G.C.||Iowa||None|
|David Muttitt||Albuquerque, N.M.||Los Altos Golf Course||Sun Country||2013, '16-17|
|Jason Schmuhl||Windsor, Calif.||Windsor G.C.||Northern California||2010|
|Brian Smock||Coronado, Calif.||Coronado Golf Course||Southern California||2017|
|Bob Sowards||Dublin, Ohio||Kinsale Golf & Fitness Club||Southern Ohio||1997, 2001, '03-04, '11-15|
|Omar Uresti||Austin, Texas||PGA Life Member||Southern Texas||2015-17|
|Ryan Vermeer||Omaha, Neb.||Happy Hollow Club||Nebraska||2017|
|Shawn Warren||Cape Elizabeth, Maine||Falmouth C.C.||New England||None|
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