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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Kan earns NCAA berth; big finish for Bernard

   Aurora Kan, the 2010 PIAA champion as a senior at Chichester, will tee it up at the NCAA Central Regional next week at the Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla., but I’m fairly certain the Purdue junior isn’t happy about the fact that the rest of the Boilermakers aren’t coming along for the ride.
   Kan has been very consistent throughout her junior season while Purdue, which finished third at the NCAA Tournament a year ago, had the kind of up-and-down season you might expect from a team that lost a couple of very talented seniors in Paula Reto, who is already playing on the LPGA Tour, and Laura Gonzalez Escallon, who is playing on the Symetra Tour, the LPGA’s developmental tour.
Purdue probably lost any chance of making the NCAA Tournament field as a team when it finished eighth at last weekend’s Big Ten Tournament, held on the Pete Dye Course at the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Ind.
   The Boilermakers got off to a rough start with an opening-round 315, improved to a 302 in the second round and fell back to 307 in the final round for a 924 total. Michigan State and Ohio State shared the conference team title at 895 with the Spartans making up an eight-shot deficit to the Buckeyes in the final two rounds.
   Northwestern, which shared the Big Ten title with Purdue a year ago, was third at 905, Penn State was fourth at 912, Illinois was fifth at 913, Wisconsin was sixth at 914, and Minnesota was seventh at 918, six shots clear of the Boilermakers in eighth.
   As she has much of the season, Kan, a qualifier for match at last summer’s U.S. Amateur, was the leading lady for Purdue. She had steady rounds of 79, 75 and 76 for a 230 total that left her in a tie for 18th, a showing that, combined with her season-long consistency landed her an individual invitation to the national regional. Kan was named to the all-Big Ten first team this week.
   The Boilermakers got solid showings from their two Swedes, as sophomore Anna Appert Lund (81-75-75--231) and junior Johanna Tillstrom (78-75-78—231) both finished a shot back of Kan in a tie for 23rd. Sophomore Vinh Hoa Ngo (77-77-78—232) was another shot back of Lund and Tillstrom in a tie for 28th. Freshman August Kim (82-79-79—240) finished 54th and sophomore Brooke Beegle (89-85-78—252) finished 70th.
   But Purdue lacked the kind of go-low players that Ohio St. had as the Buckeyes went 1-2 with Jessica Porvasnik captured the Big Ten title with rounds of 73, 72 and 71 for an even-par 216 total over the 6,017-yard, par-72 Pete Day Course layout and Zoe-Beth Brake finished second with rounds of 74, 71 and 74 for a 3-over 219 total.
   It was nice to see Jackie Calamaro, the 2009 PIAA champion as a senior at Radnor, get a chance to tee it up for Illinois at the Big Ten Tournament. A redshirt junior, Calamaro had not been making many trips for the Illini, so she obviously battled her way onto the team for the trip to French Lick. Calamaro had rounds of 81, 80 and 77 for a 238 total that left her in a tie for 49th.
   And make no mistake about it, the Illini have some talent. Two of Calamaro’s teammates, senior Ember Schuldt and freshman Stephanie Miller were, like Kan, invited as individuals to the Central Region Tournament.
   At the Big Ten tourney, Schuldt (77-73-75—224) finished alone in fifth and Miller (79-73-77—229) finished in a tie for 15th.
   Like Illinois, Penn State will also send two individuals to nationals, with senior Christina Vosters and junior Ellen Ceresko, the reigning two-time Pennsylvania Women’s Amateur champion, headed for Southwood Golf Club in Tallahassee, Fla. for the East Regional hosted by Florida St.
   Vosters (75-75-77—227), of Bethany Beach, Del., finished in a tie for ninth at the Big Ten tourney while Ceresko (80-80-72—232) finished in a tie for 28th.
   Five Big Ten teams did get the call to the NCAA regionals, co-champ Ohio St. and Minnesota are going to Stillwater and the Central Regional while co-champ Michigan St., Northwestern and Wisconsin are headed to the West Regional at the Tumble Creek Club at Suncadia Resort in Cle Elum, Wash.
   I guess there wasn’t room for one more Big Ten entrant at the party, although with two Nittany Lions, two Illini and one Boiler getting individual invitations, there was obviously some measure of respect there.
   The college golf scene is so wide-ranging it’s tough to get a feel for a team’s body of work relative to the rest of the country, but I would think one more Big Ten team out of the trio of Penn State, Purdue and Illinois deserved to go as a team. Based on its fourth-place finish at the Big Ten tourney, that team should probably be Penn State. There is no bracketology for the NCAA women’s golf tournament, but – with apologies to Joe Lunardi -- I’m guessing Penn State, Illinois and Purdue were among the last five out

Bernard’s big finish

   Lauren Bernard, a Notre Dame product and Aronimink Golf Club member, and fellow Bucknell seniors Bridget Wilcox and Kasha Scott finished off their careers with a flourish, leading the Bison to the team title at the Patriot League Tournament.
   Bucknell competed in the tough Big South Conference when Bernard was a freshman and she pulled off a remarkable runnerup finish in her rookie year. Last season the Patriot League added women’s golf and Lehigh won the inaugural team title.
   Boston University joined the party this season and was Bucknell’s chief rival in the bid for the team title at Saucon Valley Country Club in Bethlehem.
   Bernard’s second-round 73 helped Bucknell grab the lead and the Bison then held off a furious BU charge to claim the team title, the first conference crown in the program’s history.
Bucknell posted team scores of 313, 306 and 311 for a 930 total to hold off BU (320-311-302—933) by three shots.
   Bernard, the 2011 Philadelphia Women’s Amateur champion, finished third in the individual chase with an opening-round 79 and a final-round 76 to go with that stellar 73 in the middle for a 228 total. Wilcox (76-75-79—230) finished fourth and Scott (79-79-77—235) finished in a tie for fifth. Sophomore Meghan Garanich came up big with a pair of 79s in the final two rounds for the Bison. Garanich (88-79-79) and Jennifer Lee (79-83-84) finished in a tie for 14th at 246.
   Lehigh’s Crystal Lee captured the individual title with rounds of 75, 73 and 76 for a 224 total.
   Bernard, Wilcox and Lee earned all-Patriot League honors for the second straight year.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Radnor's Kim continues strong play on Junior Tour

   Radnor freshman Gabby Kim had a big weekend, playing well in two different stops on the Philadelphia PGA Junior Tour.
   In Saturday’s stop at Lu Lu Country Club, Kim fired a 5-over 76 to easily take top honors in the 13-to-15 age group. Kim had three birdies on the back nine. Meher Mankikar of Bridgewater, N.J. was a distant second with an 84 and Chichester freshman Caprian Kan was third with an 88.
   Sunday’s stop at Woodcrest Country Club was a qualifier for this weekend’s Hurricane Junior Golf Tour event at Wyncote Golf Club with only the top finisher among boys and girls 13 to 18 earning a ticket to Wyncote. Kim just missed as she lost in a playoff in the 13-to-15 age group to a familiar Junior Tour rival in Esther Park of Wilmington, Del. 
   Park and Kim each fired an 85 to finish in a tie for first and Park parred the first hole of the playoff to get the spot in the Hurricane Junior Tour event.
   Also in that age group at Woodcrest, Agnes Irwin eighth-grader Kaitlyn Lees, who will defend her Inter-Ac League title in a couple of weeks, was fourth with a 91 and Chi’s Kan was sixth with a 99.
Back at Lu Lu Saturday, John Updike of Wayne won the 13-to-15 division with a sparkling 3-over 74. He finished two shots ahead of David Robbins of Holland, who had a 76.
   Also in that age group, Billy Civitella of Berwyn and Aronimink Golf Club finished in a tie for 11th with an 86, Daniel Bullock of Wayne finished in a tie for 17th with an 89, Jack McKnight of  Villanova was 24th with a 95 and William Condran of Radnor finished 26th with a 98.
   Among the nine-holers, Kevin Civitella, Billy’s younger brother, topped the field with a 47. June Kim of Wayne finished fifth with a 50, Joseph Morganti of Havertown was seventh with a 54 and Aidan Lowe of Villanova was eighth with a 58.
   In the 16-to-18 division,  Marple Newtown sophomore Joey Delfranco finished in a tie for sixth with an 84. Richard Vanni took top honors in the age group with an 80. Brandon Dejesse finished 21st with a 104.
   In the girls 16-to-18 division, Radnor sophomore Caitlin Bullock finished fourth with a 117 and Notre Dame sophomore Gabby Morganti finished fifth with a 120. Julia Shinkle took top honors in the age group with a 99.
   In addition to Kim’s strong showing at Woodcrest, Springfield senior Samantha Miller finished third in the 16-to-18 division with a 104. Morgan Frazier of Mechanicsburg won the division with an 88.
   In the boys 16-to-18 division, Cardinal O’Hara junior Andrew Fisher finished in a tie for ninth with a 94 and Nick Andreade of Broomall finished 18th with a 106.
   In the 13-to-15 division, D.J. Colleran of Radnor finished in a tie for seventh with an 88,  Aj Aivazoglou of Glen Mills finished 19th with a 99, Jack McKnight of Villanova finished in a tie for 20th with a 101 and Matthew Barkann of Newtown Square finished 29th with a 118.
   William Mirams of Stroudsburg earned the spot in the field at Wyncote, but he had to fight for it. He finished in a tie with Connor Boham of Collegeville after both shot 82 and the two players went to a sixth hole of sudden death before Mirams finally won with a par.
   Among the nine-holers, Dolan Cox of Newtown Square finished fifth with a 48, James Quinn of Radnor finished sixth with a 49, June Kim of Wayne finished in a tie for eighth with a 51, Jackson Fields of Glen Mills finished 10th with a 52 and Hayden Smith of Havertown finished 11th with a 53.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Kania, Beman teaming up in Compher Cup

   A couple of Haverford School All-Delcos, Michael Kania and 2012-13 Daily Times Player of the Year Cole Berman, will be teaming up when the Golf Association of Philadelphia takes on the New Jersey State Golf Association in the annual Compher Cup matches Wednesday at Aronimink Golf Club.
   The Jersey boys snapped a three-year winning streak for Team GAP when they claimed a 10.5-7.5 victory in the Ryder Cup-style matches a year ago on home turf at Galloway National Golf Club.
Each association fields a 12-man team with players simultaneously competing in singles and four-ball matches. A total of 18 points are available and ties are worth a half-point to each team.
   Berman, who plays out of Philadelphia Cricket Club, is honored to be selected to play in the matches, especially considering he isn’t out of high school yet.
   “I know Juniors are typically not selected, so it was a great surprise,” Berman, who has  been the GAP Junior Player of the Year each of the last two years, told the GAP website.  “It shouldn’t be anything out of my comfort zone. Aronimink should be a great test. I’m looking forward to it.”
   And he’s happy he gets to team up with a fellow Ford in Kania, who comes out of the talented stable of golfers at Overbrook Golf Club. The two joined forces last fall in the Mason-Dixon Matches, a similar style team competition, and won three points in singles and four-ball matches. Berman and Kania are both two-time Inter-Ac League Tournament champions.
    “He’s been one of my role models since we’re both Haverford School guys,” Berman said of Kania. “I grew up caddying for him when he was on the high school team. It’s cool to be able to play with him instead of watch him.”
   There is a third All-Delco on the GAP team in White Manor Country Club’s Conrad Von Borsig, the 2004-05 Daily Times Player of the Year as a senior at Strath Haven.
   The team will also include Merion Golf Club’s Michael McDermott, coming off a 2013 campaign during which he won two GAP majors, the Mid-Amateur and Philadelphia Amateur championships.      
   McDermott is a Haverford High and Saint Joseph’s product who is a five-time winner of the William Hyndman III Player of the Year award.
   McDermott’s 2013 Philly Am victory came at Aronimink, where he also holds a membership. Kania and Von Borsig reached the semifinals at Aronimink and Berman, a few weeks removed from his junior year at The Haverford School, qualified for match play.
   Veteran Glenn Smeraglio of Mercer Oaks Golf Course will serve as the GAP team captain. He is competing in his sixth straight Compher Cup and 13th overall. He too, qualified for match play in the Philly Am at Aronimink last summer and was knocked out of match play by Von Borsig.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Terzian finishes fourth to lead the way for Delaware

   Led by a fourth-place finish from Episcopal Academy product Amanda Terzian, Delaware earned a share of second place at last weekend’s Colonial Athletic Association Tournament, the highest finish at the conference tournament in the three-history of the Blue Hens’ program.
   Terzian capped a breakout junior season with rounds of 77 and 78 for a 155 total over the 6,066-yard, par-72 Reserve Club Course at St. James Plantation in Southport, N.C. The tournament was shortened from 54 holes to 36 holes as rain wiped out play Saturday.
   Terzian’s finish earned her a spot on the CAA all-tournament team and she is the first Delaware player to finish in the top-10 at the conference tournament.
   Terzian helped Delaware put together team scores of 311 and 322 for a 633 total, a score matched by UNC Wilmington. College of Charleston, in its first year in the CAA, had rounds of 302 and 316 for a 618 total that earned it the conference title and a trip to the NCAA regionals.
   College of Charleston was led by individual winner Laura Fuenfstueck, a freshman from Germany, who had rounds of 72 and 76 for a 4-over 148 total that was six shots better than teammate Julia Neumann (79-75) and Lori Beth Adams (76-78) of UNC Wilmington, who shared second place at 154.
   Delaware also got solid showings from sophomore Vimonthip Benjasupawan (77-82—155), who finished in a tie for 12th, redshirt sophomore Andi Slane (87-75—162), who finished in a tie for 17th, freshman Grace Chua (81-87—168), who finished in a tie for 29th, and freshman Vitoria Teixeira (76-94—170), who finished 34th.
   “I am very proud of our ladies’ efforts,” Blue Hens coach Patty Post said on the Delaware website. “Mother Nature was throwing out all her tricks this weekend and it really hurt us not to play round 2. We needed all 54 holes to catch College of Charleston.”

Kan helps Boilermakers finish fourth

   As she has all season, junior Aurora Kan, the 2010 PIAA champion as a senior at Chichester, was the leading lady for Purdue as the young Boilermakers finished fourth against a strong field at the Lady Buckeye Invitational.
   Kan, a three-time Daily Times Player of the Year during her scholastic career with the Eagles, had rounds of 77, 75 and 75 over the tough 6,268-yard, par-72 Scarlet Course at The Ohio State University Golf Club to finish in a tie for sixth at 227.
   Purdue got a big boost from junior Johanna Tillstrom’s final-round 72 that enabled the Boilermakers to post a 297 team score. Tillstrom opened with rounds of 79 and 78 and the even-par final round enabled her to finish in a tie for 13th at 229.
   Sophomore Anna Appert Lund also saved her best for last with a final-round 74. Combined with rounds of 79 and 80, that gave Lund a 233 total that left her in a tie for 24th. Sophomore Brooke Beegle was steady with rounds of 77, 77 and 76 with her 230 total landing her in a tie for 15th. Sophomore Vinh-Hoa Ngo had rounds of 73, 79 and 79 for a 231 total that left her a shot back of Beegle in a tie for 18th at 231. And freshman  Ashley Yarbrough had rounds of 77, 78 and 80 to finish in a tie for 31st at 235.
   It added up to team scores of 304, 308 and that final-round 297 that gave the Boilermakers fourth place at 909.
   Host Ohio State had rounds of 303, 298 and 291 to claim the team title at 892. The Buckeyes were led by  a pair of freshmen, Katja Pogacar (75-75-70—220) and Jessica Porvasnik (73-76-71--220), who finished in a tie for third.
   Michigan State, led by individual runnerup Kelly Grassel (78-71-70—219), and Kent State, led by individual winner Jennifer Ha (72-75-71—218), finished in a tie for second in the team chase at 900.
   Jackie Calamaro, the 2009 PIAA champion as a senior at Radnor, is a redshirt junior at Illinois, but did not make the trip to Columbus, Ohio. The Illini got a nice showing from senior Ember Schuldt, who had rounds of 73, 79 and 74 to finish alone in fifth at 226, a shot better than Kan and two Kansas players, Thanuttra Boonraksasat  (74-78-75) and Yupaporn  Kawinpakorn (76-74-77).
   Kansas finished seven shots behind Purdue in fifth place at 916 and the Illini were another 11 shots back alone in sixth place at 927.
   It was one of Purdue’s stronger showings of the spring and might indicate that the Boilermakers are playing their best golf just as the postseason arrives.
   Purdue will defend the Big Ten title it shared with Northwestern a year ago when the Boilermakers open play in the Big Ten Tournament Friday at the 6,017-yard, par-72 Pete Dye Course at the French Lick Resort in French Lick, Ind.  

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Calamaro settles for second at Morgan Hill

   The Philadelphia Section PGA Junior Tour made a stop at The Club at  Morgan Hill in Easton Saturday and Newtown Square’s Jacob Calamaro fired a 78 to tie Paul Fedele of Easton and Caleb Ryan of Norristown for first place in the 13-to-15 age group.
   Fedele was awarded the top spot in a match of cards, but it was a solid showing for Calamaro over the 6,322-yard, par-71 Morgan Hill layout in windy conditons.
   Also in the 13-to-15 division, Daniel Bullock of Wayne had a 91 to finish 16th and D.J. Colleran of Radnor was two shots  back of Bullock in 17th place with a 93.
   Tommy Lewis of Doylestown had the day’s best score with a 77 that gave him the top spot in the 16-to-18 division.
   Nicholas Alizzi of Havertown and John Lesko of Wayne were two of the three players who shared ninth place with 88s. Nick Andreades of Broomall finished 17th with a 97.
   On the girls side, Radnor High freshman Gabby Kim finished second in the 13-to-15 division with an 86. Top honors in the age group went to Esther Park of Wilmington, Del., with an 81.
Bonner-Prendie senior Anna Haley, a Class AAA East Regional qualifier during the scholastic season last fall, finished sixth in the 16-to-18 division with a 112. Emily Gilbert of Gilbertsville finished first in the age group with a 95.
   Among the nine-holers, Dolan Cox of Newtown Square finished in a tie for second with a 43. Win Thomas of Coatesville was the division winner with a 42. June Kim, who is likely Gabby’s younger sister, finished in a tie for seventh with a 46, James Quinn of Radnor finished in a tie for ninth with 47, Jackson Fields of Glen Mills finished 13th with a 53 and Nicky Scarpone of Havertown finished 14th with a 54.