The Ike Championship: Sudden Death at Somerset Hills

via MGAgolfer
A classic playoff battle on an enchanting golden age golf course. It doesn't get much better than that, and so went the MGA's 56th Ike Championship.

The event took place over two days at Somerset Hills Country Club in the pastoral countryside of Northern New Jersey. The course, built on the site of a former racetrack by A.W.Tillinghast in 1917, features a layout that contrasts open expanses with rolling woodlands, and has often been described as charming. As a spectator it's a delightful stroll, but after 41 holes yesterday, nutmegger Tommy McDonagh was clearly glad to see the 493-yard ninth in his rear view mirror. You see, the Norwalk, CT native has been playing an awful lot of golf lately; just prior to his battle at Somerset Hills McDonagh had played in the grueling Connecticut Amateur Championship… and won it!

The Ike Championship had been on my calendar for months, and I'd been looking forward to getting back to Somerset Hills having fallen in love with the place several years ago when I was there for a fund raiser. In the end, life got in the way and I wasn't able to swing it... but fortunately, the Metropolitian Golf Association has a stellar social media team and they did an amazing job with ultra-timely updates on Facebook, and Twitter, daily photos and videos, and even an exciting live chat animated by the with the always engaging Billy Condon. It was the next best thing to being there.