Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Mccormick's Back in Town

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Mccormick's Back in Town

Article excerpt

The 101st Met Open Championship represents a return home for Ryan McCormick.

The three-day MGA Open starts today and marks the first time the 24-year-old from Middletown will compete for a title in the metropolitan area since he turned pro in May 2014.

And the former New Jersey Amateur titlist is more than a little familiar with the host course, Glen Oaks Club in Old Westbury, N.Y., because he played "more than 100 rounds there" while competing collegiately for St. John's.

"I haven't been this excited, honestly, for an event in a while, just knowing that I've played there so much," McCormick said.

McCormick is among several pros from the Garden State who are eligible for the Met Open, but were not eligible for last month's New Jersey Open because they don't work at a state club and/or they compete on a mini tour.

That list includes fellow 20-somethings Kevin Foley of Neshanic Valley, the 2011 New Jersey Open champ who played on the PGA Tour in 2014 and qualified for this year's U.S. Open; Pat Wilson of Hamilton Farm, McCormick's former St. John's teammate who qualified for the 2015 U.S. Open; and Matt Dubrowski of White Beeches, who this month won the Providence Open and in the fall will return to the PGA Tour Latinoamerica.

McCormick, Foley, Wilson and Dubrowski join 2011 Met Open champion Tyler Hall, 34, the director of instruction at Upper Montclair in Clifton, on the list of pro contenders from New Jersey. Hall is the only Garden State resident to win the title in the 21st century.

"I feel like my game is in the best spot that it's ever been in at this point," said McCormick, who plays out of Suburban GC in Union, where his father, Mark, is the head pro.

McCormick missed the previous two Met Opens because he was competing on the PGA Tour Canada, which is golf's equivalent of baseball's Class AA, below the Tour and PGA Tour.

"I loved it. It was great. Obviously it was a great learning experience right out of college," said McCormick, who graduated from St. John's with a degree in sports management. "You learn how to travel, you learn how to play professionally. There's pro-ams, there's clinics. All that stuff you get exposure to. …

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