KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship

At 2023 KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship, Doan leads a tight race for Low Club Professional

May 27, 2023

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Jeff Babineau

FRISCO, Texas – It has been a busy week for Mark Brown here at the 83rd KitchenAid Senior PGA Championship. The 56-year-old PGA Teaching Professional at the Yacht & Country Club in Hobe Sound, Florida, played a couple of practice rounds on the weekend at PGA Frisco’s Fields Ranch East course, flew to New Jersey to participate in a U.S. Senior Open qualifier on Monday (he shot 70 and made it), then flew back to Texas to get to work at this week’s senior major.

After making the cut, he has one predominant thought as he readies for one last round: “Mama needs a kitchen.”

He laughed. Brown is referring to the full kitchen suite from KitchenAid that is awarded to Sunday’s Low Club Professional. Brown already won a kitchen once, tying Bob Sowards for Low Club Professional honors in 2019 at Oak Hill. He received a beautiful new kitchen for his efforts. One problem: It was installed at his home in New York, which he later sold. He and his wife now reside in Florida.

So ...

“Wife needs a new kitchen,” said Brown, who shot a second consecutive 71 on Saturday after struggling to an opening 76. “I'm playing well enough and giving myself a lot of birdie chances. So it feels great.”

Eleven Club Professionals, who entered the field as part of the Corebridge Financial PGA Team, are playing on the weekend. A handful are within striking distance of local favorite Cameron Doan, 55, longtime Director of Golf at Preston Trail Golf Club in Dallas, for Low Club Professional honors. Doan has been terrific all week, and sits at 1-over 217 through 54 holes, one shot ahead of Brown. Doan shot 72 on Saturday.

“The driver and the putter have both been very good all three days,” Doan said. “Iron game has been good. Wedge game has been kind of hit and miss. Hit three or four really good wedge shots and then hit a couple today that weren't very good. But driver and the putter have been linchpins for sure.

“If you do those two things well and you pay attention you ought to be able to get it around.”

Also right there in the mix are Dave McNabb (75) and Tim Weinhart (74), both at 4-over 220, and Jeffrey Schmid and Jeff Brehaut (both shot 74), who start Sunday four shots behind Doan. McNabb, who represents the Philadelphia PGA Section, owns the low Club Professional round of the tournament, shooting 5-under 67 on Friday to rally to make the cut.

“I mean, anything can happen,” McNabb said. “If I start making a few birdies – and he (Doan) is obviously a great player, so I'm going to have to do something to catch him, but that's kind of the goal in mind right now.”

McNabb already owns a piece of history at Fields Ranch East at PGA Frisco. On Thursday, he was the first player to collect a hole-in-one, holing a 7-iron at the par-3 eighth hole, which measured 161 yards. (Corey Pavin added one at No. 4 later on Thursday, and Stewart Cink aced No. 13 Saturday.)

McNabb birdied No. 8 on Saturday, making a 15-footer. The hole has treated him pretty well. In his three rounds, he has gone 1-2-2.

“I like all the holes out here,” said McNabb, 57, PGA Head Golf Professional at Applebrook Golf Club in Malvern, Pennsylvania, a course that shares the same designer as Fields Ranch East, Gil Hanse.'“That one I might take home with me.”

“That one I might take home with me.”