Dobyns, Small earn invites to PGA Championship


SEASIDE, Calif. - Matt Dobyns completed a runaway victory Wednesday in the PGA Professional National Championship, closing with a 2-under 70 on the Bayonet course for an eight-stroke margin.

The 34-year-old Dobyns, the PGA head professional at Fresh Meadow Country Club in Lake Success, N.Y., finished at 13-under 275. The former University of Texas player shot a 68 at Black Horse on Sunday, and followed with rounds of 68 and 69 at Bayonet to take a six-stroke lead into the final round.

''This is the biggest tournament I've ever won,'' Dobyns said. ''It'll probably be the biggest tournament I ever win. I'm trying to cherish every single second, but it's hard because everything is going so quickly. From a golf standpoint, I really had control of my golf swing and I can't tell you why. For whatever reason, when I showed up here I was in control and the hard shots didn't feel that hard.''

The top 20 earned spots in the PGA Championship in August at Kiawah Island. Dobyns also received $75,000 and six PGA Tour exemptions over a 12-month period.

Rod Perry, the PGA head professional at Crane Lakes Golf Course in Port Orange, Fla., and Kelly Mitchum, a PGA assistant professional at Pinehurst (N.C.) Resort, tied for second. Perry shot a 69, and Mitchum had a 71.

Mike Small, the 46-year-old golf coach at the University of Illinois,finished fourth. Small won the event in 2005, '09 and '10.

Michael Frye, a PGA assistant professional at Oakcreek Country Club in Sedona, Ariz., won an eight-player playoff for the final spot in the PGA Championship. He advanced with a par on the third playoff hole.