Warrensville Heights, Ohio: Randy Dietz and Rob Moss each will attempt to win their second consecutive titles when the 46th Denny Shute Match Play Championships begin Monday at Portage Country Club.
Dietz, a Teaching Golf Professional at Windmill Golf Center, won the Regular Division title in 2019 en route to being named as Player-of-the-Year in the Northern Ohio Section of the Professional Golfers Association of America.
Moss, Head Golf Professional at The Pepper Pike Club, won the Regular Division championship in 2014 and was the Senior Division winner last year.
Competition in the Denny Shute Match Play Championship is held in an Apprentice Division as well. Jordan Paolini, an Assistant Golf Professional at Shaker Heights Country Club, was the Apprentice winner last year but will compete in the Regular Division this year.
The event, named in honor of Herman Densmore (Denny) Shute, a World Golf Hall-of-Famer and long-time professional at Portage and Lake Forest, begins with a field of 32 with two rounds being played on Monday (Oct. 19) and two rounds on Tuesday. A 36-hole final will be played Wednesday.
Dietz, Moss and 2019 Apprentice runner-up Tyler McHugh are the top-seeded players in each division. Dietz defeated two-time winner Jaysen Hansen (Beechmont Country Club) in last year’s finals, 4-and-3. Moss, seeded 12th last year, beat second-seeded Gary Robison (Brookside Country Club), 4-and-3 and Paolini beat McHugh (Fox Den) in a match that went 20 holes.
As defending champs Dietz and Moss will receive first-round byes, as will McHugh. Dietz will play the winner between 17th seed Paolini and 16th seed Adam Stinogle (Beechmont) in the second round (Round of 16).
Moss awaits the winner of the match between 16th seed Andy Santor (The Country Club) and 17th seed Terry Shell (PGA Lifetime Member). McHugh will play either #4 Kyle Kellogg (Mt. Vernon CC) or #5 Mark Scott Jr. (Westfield CC).
Shute, a Cleveland native, was inducted posthumously into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2008 after an illustrious career. In the span of 10 years he won three major championships — the 1933 British Open and back-to-back PGA Championships in 1936-37 – and played on four Ryder Cup teams. Prior to his success on the national stage Shute was a three-time winner of the Ohio Open (1929, 1930 and 1931). He later became the Head Golf Professional at Lake Forest Country Club and was the Head Golf Professional at Portage Country Club for 23 years. He died in his home in Akron on May 13, 1974 at the age of 69.
MONDAY, OCT. 19
9 a.m. Round of 32
11 a.m. Round of 16
TUESDAY, OCT. 20
8 a.m. Round of 8
11 a.m. Semifinals
WEDNESDAY, OCT. 21
8 a.m. Finals
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Tim is a Contributing Writer for the Northern Ohio PGA. Award-winning golf writer and sports reporter for the Plain Dealer, now retired. Contributor to the Akron Beacon Journal, Canton Repository, AP, other national publications.