Every stroke counts at the Matterhorn International Pro-Am miniature golf tournament in Canton. On Saturday, two-time champion Justin Seymour of Manchester had a one-stroke with one hole remaining.
Seymour had a four at the 18th hole, opening the door for Simsbury’s David Vayda, who sank a long putt for a three and move into a tie for the lead after three rounds. Both men finished with a three-round score of 116, one stroke off the tournament record.
It took a record five extra holes before Vayda got a hole in one to win the Matterhorn International Pro-Am for the first time on Saturday (Sept. 16). It was Vayda’s four aces of the tournament.
Along with the championship trophy, Vayda also earned an automatic bid to next April’s World Minigolf Sport Federation’s World Adventure Golf Tour final in the Czech Republic.
This is the first year of the World Minigolf Sport Federation tour, which consists of 12 tournaments in 11 countries. The Matterhorn International Pro-Am is the only U.S. stop on the tour.
Vayda started off the tournament with a nine-under-par 36, tying the tournament record for a low score. He followed that with back-to-back scores of 40. Seymour had back-to-back rounds of 38 to tie Vayda after two rounds. The two swapped the lead throughout the third and final round.
Farmington’s Caleb Smith, who won the amateur division in 2021, finished third with a 119. A record 29 professionals participated in the tournament, which paid out a purse of $1,250 to the top eight finishers. There were golfers from eight states in the tournament.
In the amateur division, Patrick Kavanagh from Hackensack, N.J. won the tournament with a one-stroke win over Simsbury’s Jeff Pomeroy, 124-125. Robin Schwartzman from Minneapolis, Minnesota was third with a three-round total of 126.
“I am incredibly happy with the turnout for the tournament and the weather couldn’t have been better,” said tournament organizer Pat Sheridan from the American Minigolf Alliance and the Putting Penguin website. “The players all brought their best games and there were battles for position all over the leaderboard. You couldn’t write a better ending than an ace to win a playoff.
“I’m very happy for Dave to become our sixth tournament champion and to punch his ticket to the WAG Tour Final to play against some of the best miniature golfers in the world,” Sheridan said.
The Matterhorn International Pro-Am is a “blue” level event of the American Minigolf Alliance (AMA), the highest category of competition. The AMA started in 2022 and includes 20 tournaments in the 2023 season. You can find out more about the AMA at www.amaminigolf.com.
More information about the world tour, the rankings and qualifications can be found at www.wmfwagtour.com
2023 Matterhorn International Pro-Am
|x-Dave Vayda, Simsbury, CT, $500||36||40||40||116|
|Justin Seymour, Manchester, CT||38||38||40||116|
|Caleb Smith, Farmington, CT||38||42||39||119|
|y-Mark Novicki, Bethel, CT||38||43||39||120|
|Randy Vale, Cheshire, CT||40||43||37||120|
|Bill Mezier, NY||40||39||42||121|
|Griffin Weiss, NJ||40||39||42||121|
|z-Kyle Courcy, ME||42||41||39||122|
|Matt Liles, CT||41||41||40||122|
|Jeremy Inabinet, IL||39||43||40||122|
|x-won playoff on fifth extra hole
y-won playoff to finish fourth
z-won playoff to finish eighth
29 golfers participated, par 45 for 18 holes
|Patrick Kavanaugh, Hackensack, NJ||41||42||41||124|
|Jeff Pomeroy, Simsbury, CT||42||44||39||125|
|Robin Schwartzman, Minneapolis, MN||45||42||39||126|
|William Lancaster, CT||47||43||41||131|
|Heather Garvin, CT||42||47||43||132|
|Joel Smith, CT||48||44||41||133|
|Dan Fredenburgh, CT||45||42||46||133|
|Trish Weiss, NJ||44||43||47||134|
|David Hudon, CT||48||43||43||134|
|Joseph Lombardi, CT||46||46||46||138|
|18 golfers competed, par 45 for 18 holes|
Previous Matterhorn International Pro-Am champions
2017: Mark Novicki, Danbury, 198
2018: Justin Seymour, East Hartford, 198
2019: Justin Seymour, East Hartford, 196
2020: Dylan Koerner, 201
2021: Pat Sheridan, Berlin, 115**
2022: Matt Liles, Glastonbury 115
2023: Dave Vayda, Simsbury, 116*
*Won in a 5-hole playoff
**Won in a 3-hole playoff
2017: Stephen Langlois, East Granby, 129
2018: Daniel Hurley, Canton, 125*
2019: Brian Hogan, Avon, 127
2020: Chris Mamrosh, 127**
2021: Caleb Smith, Farmington, 120
2022: Darren Smith, Farmington 122
2023: Patrick Kavanaugh, Hackensack NJ, 124
*Won in 3-hole playoff
**Won in a 1-hole playoff