With the U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship being staged this year at Stonewall, 36 holes of Tom Doak at his best, plenty of the Golf Association’s top mid-amateur players are taking special interest in trying to earn a spot in the field.
The Golf Association of Philadelphia administered the first of two qualifiers for the Mid-Am at Stonewall Tuesday at Philadelphia Cricket Club’s Wissahickon Course and three Cricket Club members took advantage of their local knowledge to earn a trip to Chester County for next month’s event.
Gregor Orlando of the Cricket Club earned medalist honors with a 4-under 66 over the A.W. Tillinghast classic that earned rave reviews earlier this year when the Senior Players Championship was staged there.
Runnerup Andy Latkowski is listed as hailing from San Francisco, but he has been a Cricket Club stalwart. He was a shot back of Orlando with a 3-under 67.
A third Cricket Club member, John Brennan of Audubon, grabbed one of the last two berths, tying for sixth with a 1-over 71. More than 100 players were vying for seven spots at Stonewall.
DuPont Country Club’s Matthew Finger, the runnerup in the GAP Mid-Amateur Championship this spring, and Chris Cassetta of Roanoke, Va., finished in a tie for third at 1-under 69.
Brian Payne of Flossmoor, Ill., finished fifth with an even-par 70.
Sharing sixth place with Brennan at 1-over 71 was Yardley Country Club’s Christopher Ault, another veteran campaigner on the GAP scene.
Jack Wallace of Norristown is the first alternate and Tom Timby of Doylestown is the second alternate. They both came in at 2-over 72.
GAP will administer another local qualifier for the U.S. Mid-Am Monday at Llanerch Country Club. Two of Philadelphia’s top mid-amateur players, Merion Golf Club’s Michael McDermott and Huntingdon Valley Country Club’s Jeff Osberg, are scheduled to tee it up at Llanerch, a course both know well as former members.
The U.S. Mid-Amateur tees off Saturday, Sept. 10 with qualifying at the Old Course and the North Course. The scheduled 36-hole final will also be contested over both courses, which the USGA has not done before.