Hale Irwin meets the young golfers during the Tuesday practice round at Salem Country Club.
By ANNE MARIE TOBIN
The U.S. Senior Open at Salem Country Club this summer was by all accounts a resounding success. While 2017 champion Kenny Perry, who shot a record-setting 16-under 264, and runner up Kirk Triplett were battling it down the stretch, there were many stories behind the scenes that made the week memorable.
PEABODY – John Daly has withdrawn from the U.S. Senior Open Championship, the USGA has announced. The reason cited is a shoulder injury.
Fan-favorite Daly, who was fully exempt, will be replaced in the field by Ted Tryba, of Orlando, Fla., the second alternate from the Dunedin, Fla., sectional qualifying site.
Steve Stricker putts during last weekend’s U.S. Open Championship in Wisconsin.
By BILL BROTHERTON
Steve Stricker and Dave Eichelberger have withdrawn from the 2017 U.S. Senior Open Championship at Salem Country Club in Peabody. Stricker cited his playing schedule as the reason, while Eichelberger pulled out because of health reasons.
The championship will be held Thursday, June 29 through Sunday, July 2, at the acclaimed Donald Ross-designed course. Practice rounds will officially begin on Monday, but some players, including Billy Andrade and Rocco Mediate, have already tested out the challenging 6815-yard, par-70 course.
Stricker is coming off a sparkling 3-under final round at the U.S. Open Championship at Erin Hills in his native Wisconsin last weekend. He finished tied for 16th place at 5-under for the tournament. Stricker had played his way into the field of last weekend’s Open, shooting 67-65 at the Tennessee sectional qualifier, after the United States Golf Association had rejected his request for a special exemption.
Stricker was fully exempt and was expected to play in his first year of eligibility for the U.S. Senior Open. He will be replaced in the field by Danny Mulhearn of Wheaton, Ill., the first alternate from the Aurora, Ill. sectional qualifying site.
“In looking at my playing schedule and other obligations for the upcoming months, I feel it is best for me to withdraw from the U.S. Senior Open next week,” said Stricker. “With playing both the PGA Tour and PGA Tour Champions this year and the final push I needed to make these last two months to qualify for the U.S. Open at Erin Hills, has my mind and body telling me that I need to rest and recharge. This was without a doubt a hard decision, but one that I feel is needed in order for me to get ready for the next stretch of events and to play at the level I expect of myself.”
Mulhearn, 50, shot 71 at Aurora Country Club on June 5. He is playing in his first U.S. Senior Open. Mulhearn is the head golf professional at Glen Oak Country Club, in Glen Ellyn, Ill.
Eichelberger, who won the 1999 U.S. Senior Open Championship, was fully exempt. He will be replaced in the field by amateur Steve Fink, of Las Vegas, Nev., the first alternate from the Murrieta, Calif., sectional qualifying site.
Fink, 60, shot 72 at Bear Creek Golf Club on May 22. He is playing in his first U.S. Senior Open.
Eichelberger, 73, has competed in 23 consecutive U.S. Senior Opens, dating back to 1994. It is the third-longest streak in the history of the championship. Dale Douglass and Arnold Palmer played in 26 and 25 consecutive Senior Opens, respectively. Eichelberger has played in 40 USGA championships, including 14 U.S. Opens.
By BILL BROTHERTON
“Is John Daly playing at Salem?” That’s the first question most people ask when they find out I edit North Shore Golf magazine. Bernhard Langer and Fred Couples have made the most money. Billy Andrade, Jerry Kelly and Gene Sauers have the devoted New England following. Tom Watson and Davis Love III are the most recognizable. Nearly every competitor has the skills.
In 2001, everyone was rooting for Danvers’ Steve Swedberg | Photo: Spenser Hasak
By BOB ALBRIGHT
For one momentous week 16 years ago, Steve Swedberg was the story at the 2001 U.S. Senior Open at Salem Country Club. Sure, Nicklaus, Palmer, Player and Trevino were all there too, but everyone on the North Shore was talking about the affable physical therapist from Danvers who improbably went from playing for skins over at Beverly Golf & Tennis Club, to teeing it up with golf royalty just a few miles up the road in the pre-eminent major on the Senior Tour.
By GARY LARRABEE
Forty years after taking over as both Salem Country Club liaison to the United States Golf Association and general chairman of the 1977 USGA Senior Amateur, Ollie Cook is preparing for the upcoming 38th United States Senior Open at his beloved Salem Country Club with mixed emotions.
By ANNE MARIE TOBIN
With the 38th U.S. Senior Open just around the corner, now is the time to plan how to follow the championship action. The tournament, which features some of the world’s best professional and senior golfers age 50 and older, will be held at Salem Country Club in Peabody June 26 to July 3.