“His loyalty is unwavering, sure, and it’s hard to find these days,” Daly said of his good friend and fellow. “He stuck with me through thick and thin. He was the first person I called to work with me when I first got the job here. He worked with Bobby [the late long-time head pro Bob Haggerty Jr.] when I did. He’s a great kid. If I didn’t like the guy, I wouldn’t bring him here.
“People love and respect him. He’s doing a good job for me, but also for all the guys we have here. That went unnoticed. He’s a rare breed these days. I’m so grateful to have him. The world needs more Chris Pentrophatus, for sure.”
Petrovato, 42, knows what is expected of him, and he always delivers. He never seeks publicity and is actually a bit shy of the camera.
“My favorite part of the job is customer service,” said the Niskayuna High School graduate. “I always try to make everyone happy and provide great service to everyone – even when we are busy or stressed. I enjoy the camaraderie we have with all the people here. That is what makes it worthwhile.”
Pentrovato’s favorite sport was originally hockey, but by the time he was 14, he had taught himself how to play golf well enough to make the Niskina High School team.
“I was always self-made. I guess [learning golf so easily] Came because of the hockey swing. Hand-eye coordination was natural for me.
“I played a lot with Ben Bates at Niscayona. He was a year younger than me, but I grew up playing a little Ben. We played at Mohawk Golf, of course, and that was always impressive,” said Petrovato with a wide grin, “Ben was beating me up a lot at the time. And even more so these days when we get the chance to play.”
After high school, Bentrovato hone his skills at the American Golf Academy in Orlando, Florida. His first golf job was as a professional assistant to Mike Kuchera at the Country Club of Troy for two years.
“Mike was a great professional to start working with,” said Bentrophatto.
Pentrovato then joined Daly as a professional assistant to legend Bob Hagerty, Jr., a NENY PGA Hall of Famer who served for more than three decades as a lead professional for Mooney.
Two years later, Pintrophatto learned more aspects of the golf business when he took a job at the prestigious Innisbrook Resort in Florida for 4 seasons.
“It was a great experience for me,” he said, “and I met so many good people there.”
Pentrophatto met Daly when he took over as president of Mooney in 2013. The two professionals have been working together ever since, except for a brief period during the pandemic era when Mooney reduced her staff. Pentrovato worked for a short time at Pinehaven CC before returning to Schenectady Muni.
Bentrophatto explained his job priorities: “I try to focus on the day-to-day operations here, I love teaching, and it is very rewarding to get someone to improve their game with lessons, but I really enjoy the day-to-day running stuff and staying on top of that.”
Pentrovato doesn’t play much during the regular golf season in the Northeast. He tries to play once a week with Daly when things aren’t too crowded, and occasionally plays with a few regular Mooneys from time to time. “The best service to the golfers during our season is here now. In the winter, I have a lot of time to play.” “I usually go to Florida to visit some friends in Tampa.”
Petrovato said his lowest run of his career was 68 at Copperhead Stadium in the resort of Innsbruck. “This is the tour I am most proud of in my career,” he said.
He’s scored three holes in one so far – one at Ballston Spa CC when he was 17, one on the 12th hole at Mohawk Golf Club and one on the sixth hole at Schenectady Muni two years ago.
“I really enjoy working here,” said Bentrophatto. “They say the grass is always greener. When I worked at Innisbrook the cost to play was $350 per round, but I don’t think you’ve gotten any better service than we’re trying to give the golfers here.
“Matt was a wonderful teacher and a good friend.”
A strong local group in men’s amateurs in New York
With another “last chance” qualifier remaining on Sunday at Drumlins Country Club, the NYS Men’s Amateur Championships will have at least 24 contenders in the metropolitan area when the elite event begins Tuesday through Thursday at Onondaga Country Club.
The three-day tournament is a 72-hole event, with cut-offs from 36 holes to 40 holes and ties, plus anyone within 10 strokes of the lead. The remaining field will play 36 holes on Thursday.
Local competitors are Will Braxton of Saratoga Springs, Clarky Carroll of Wilton, Anthony Cavuta of Saratoga Springs, Richard Christman of Albany, Nolan Crowley of Saratoga Springs, Dean Keelen of Saratoga Springs, Matthew Ferrari of Croton-on-Hudson, Aidan Fitzgerald of Albany, Gifford of Ballston Lake, Paul Goetz of Clifton Park, David Ewell of Johnstown, Dan Ireland of Winantskill, Thomas Keneally of Lake Ballston, Clinton Lange of Albany, Tom McGinn of Saratoga Springs, Ryan Miller of Queensbury, Jim Mueller of Altamont, Joe Quijano Troy, Ben Robley of Troy, Ben Swartz of Hudson Falls, Brandon Tickler of Clifton Park, Louis Walsh of Ballston Spa, Andrew Wise of Clifton Park, Jim Welch of Valati.
While this area has had a lot of success recently in other NYSGA events for men (NYS Mid-Amateur and NYS Senior Men Amateur), women (NYS Women Amateur and NYS Women’s Senior Amateur) and even juniors, the drought has been long in the amateurs. New York for men. The last local player to win the New York Men’s Amateur title was Jay Gunning in 1986. He was living in Colony at the time and later became a local professional club before moving to Florida.
Other New York area amateur champions include Joe Rosas of Albany (1944), Billy Shields of Albany (1951, 1952, 1955), Rich Sirian of Troy (1977) and Bill Poland of Troy (1983).
Kennedy Swedek of Albany and Keelen Dean Saratoga Springs apply for a playoff match in the Junior PGA Championship at Cog Hill Golf & Country Club in Palos Park, Illinois.
Former Siena College Outstanding Kyle Downey landed one of three qualifying berths in the U.S. men’s amateur home qualifier last week at Mohawk Golf Club.
Glens Falls CC will host the NENY PGA’s Senior Stroke Play Championships on Monday.
Next on the NEWGA schedule is Gail Purdy’s Best Two Ball of Four Championships on August 15 at The Edison Club.
The 36-hole Van Patten Golf Club Championship will be held from August 20-21. An official disability is required. Men will play in white shirts, seniors (50 and over) silver shirts and women will also play silver shirts. There will be total and net divisions. Entry fee is $150 per player ($50 for members) and this fee includes a small bucket and cart. Call 518-877-5400, ext. 36) To register or for more information.
The fifth annual Schoharie County Open Amateur Championships will take place August 27 at Cobleskill G&CC with tee times beginning at 9 a.m. All amateur golfers are eligible to compete, regardless of where they live. The competition will be divided into the Championship Division, Men’s Division, Senior Division and Women’s Division. The cost will be $60 for non-members and $15 plus shopping cart for members. Call the Pro Store at 518-234-4045 to register or for more information.
The Schenectady Municipal Golf Course will host a golf fundraiser to celebrate the life of the late Wendy O’Connor, a former Niskayuna physical education teacher and president of the Craig School Parent-Teacher Organization, on Friday. Entry fee is $125 per person and includes golf, cart, lunch at the turn, and buffet. The shape will be a stampede with a gun starting at 9 am. For more information, call Jacquie (518-573-5480).
Pinehaven CC will be holding the HERO100 Golf Marathon in the Folds of Honor HERO100 on Monday. The event will raise funds that will provide scholarships for children or dependents of veterans who have given their lives or become disabled as a result of their service. Since 2007, Folds of Honor has awarded nearly 35,000 educational scholarships. Last year, Pinehaven CC raised $15,000. Pro Brian Pierroti and assistant pros Tom Mattis and Andrew Kemp will race the marathon with several members of Pinehaven CC. Donations can be made either per hole or in a single lump-sum pledge. To pledge, Pinehaven CC members can scan their donation in several code areas around the course or anyone interested in helping this cause worth can go to this link: http://www.foh.org/Pinehaven.
Mohawk Golf Club will host the ninth annual golf course with the Mission Championship, in memory of Joseph Lazzari Jr., on September 12. Entry fee is $750 for a quad or $195 per person and includes golf, buggy, lunch, and dinner. There will be registration and lunch at 11am, followed by the Venice kick-off at 12:30pm. The Fellowship Hour, Silent Auction, and Awards Dinner/presentation will follow at 5 p.m. For more information, go to citymission.com./golf/.
The first charity skins game for the Schenectady Boys and Girls Clubs is scheduled for August 16th at Mohawk Golf Club. Competing with former World No. 1 player David Duvall, Blaine McAllister, Fred Funk, and first Open Championship champion Darren Clarke. Tickets $40. For more information go to the Schenectady Clubs website for Boys and Girls – bgcschenectady.org.
The Schenectady Municipal Golf Course will host the 14th annual Schenectady City School District Athletic Hall of Fame Golf on September 18. The format will be a modified four-person stampede. Entry fee is $420 per quad and includes golf, cart, buffet, and prizes. This event is named after SCSD Hall of Fame member Pete Famiano. Call Bob Pezzano at 518-346-9297 for more information.
holes in one
Vitto Iuliano got his 141-yard fifth hole with a 4-Hybrid on the golf club’s course.
On the Schenectady Municipal Golf Course, Dean Stringfellow made his first career on the third hole.
James Sackett scored a holeshot at 187 yards 10The tenth An 8-iron hole at Cobleskill Golf & Country Club.
Jamie Hall scored her first holeshot on the 121-yard ninth hole at Pinehaven Country Club.
Also on Pinehaven CC, Ross Testa collected the seventh ace of his career on the same ninth hole.
PJ Riley eagles the 460-yard par-5 fourth hole at Mechanicville Golf Club.
Also at the Mechanicville Golf Club, Shea Bromirski eagle the same fourth hole.
Neil Shapiro was holed up for Eagle-2 on the first hole while competing in the Bugundy League at Schenectady Municipal Golf Course.
Also at Schenectady Municipal, Joe Lazzari eagle par-5 12thThe tenth Puncture by a 9-iron shot during the final round of the Schenectady Senior Classic.
You can reach Bob Weiner at [email protected]
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Categories: Sports, Your Niskayuna