124th BMW Philadelphia Amateur: Day One Notebook - The Golf Association of Philadelphia

Giovacchini, Curran earn match play spots, will play each other

GLENSIDE, Pa. – If you look back at the GAP Junior-Junior Boys’ Championship history records and the leaderboard of the 124th BMW Philadelphia Amateur Championship, you’d notice a discrepancy.

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Louis Giovi won the 2015 Junior-Junior Boys’ Championship at West Chester Golf & Country Club. Louis Giovacchini resides on the Philadelphia Amateur leaderboard. 

“Giovi is just the shortened version,” Giovacchini, of Mercer Oaks Golf Course, said. “When I was a kid, I didn’t want to write it out. My mom [Beth] signed me up for this tournament so that is why it is spelled out. Nothing crazy about it.”

Giovacchini, a rising senior at Rider University, grew up in more ways than one to secure his first appearance in match play after Day One of the BMW Philadelphia Amateur.


He fired 71s Tuesday at both Whitemarsh Valley Country Club (par 72, 6,843 yards) and North Hills Country Club (par 71, 6,498 yards) to secure the 10 seed. He will take on No. 23 seed Andrew Curran of Philadelphia Cricket Club on Wednesday in the Round of 32 at 7:52 a.m. on starting on No. 10.

“To be honest, the game hasn’t been feeling good,” Giovacchini, 21, of Ewing, N.J., said. “I had a pretty good freshman season but the last two years haven’t been great. But I got a fresh start. I decided to stay up here in New Jersey this summer. Staying up here and seeing my coach Jason Barry has been great for me to get a jump start on my game for this summer of tournaments.”

His 75.41 scoring average in his junior year was fourth on the team but was close to two shots higher from his sophomore year’s average of 73.57.

“I could never really find consistency throughout my game,” Giovacchini said. “When I would improve one part of my game the other parts wouldn’t be there. I couldn’t ever piece a round of golf together. In the past, I couldn’t get a handle on it. Today, I felt like I had my game under control.”

In his second round of the 36-hole qualifying day, he got off to a blazing start. He was 4 under through his first 10 holes at North Hills. The start was highlighted by a birdie at No. 5 (par 4, 363 yards). Giovacchini said it was the only hole he hit a good drive, approach and putt. He stuffed a 54-degree wedge from 107 yards to three feet to convert the red figure.

He limped in with four bogeys in his final seven holes, but that didn’t matter. For the first time, he will have a slot on the Philadelphia Amateur match play bracket.

“It’s pretty awesome for me to make match play in the Philadelphia Amateur,” Giovacchini said. “Especially because I spend most of my time in Florida now. This area is home to me. I love match play. I would love to win this tournament. I am just going to have to play solid for three more days. To be able to put together a solid 36 holes of golf at two difficult golf courses is important and means a lot for my future outlook.”

Curran building momentum 


Finishing out an era in any aspect of life often has a lot of pressure. Andrew Curran found that out the hard way.

After playing in four of the six events for Temple University last fall, he only played in one event this spring in his final semester.

“I feel like I have been playing better since the season ended,” Curran, 23, of Newtown Square, Pa., said. “Coach [Brian] Quinn and Coach [Matt] Teesdale do a great job with us. They want us to learn as much as we can from everyone regardless of whether they are younger or older than us. I feel like I have grown a lot on the course management side of things within the last year.”

Curran, motivated to prove his final semester at Temple was just an aberration, made it through GAP’s longest day with a two-round total of 2-over-par 145. He will play Giovacchini in the Round of 32 Wednesday morning.

“This is the first time I made match play in the Philly Amateur,” Curran, of Philadelphia Cricket Club, said. “I have been close. I circle this event every year. I have been dying to get into match play to give myself a chance at competing on Saturday for the title. I need to keep trusting all of my hard work.”

Each year, Curran’s scoring average at Temple has improved. As a sophomore, his scoring average was 79.5. His final season scoring average as a fifth-year student was 75.8. 

“Now that I am done with school, it gets hard for me to play as much golf as I used to,” Curran said. “But there is always a lot you can do to improve. I know that I am good enough and that I can compete with everyone in the Philly circuit. These events are awesome. There are a ton of guys who have had a lot of success in this event that are members at Philadelphia Cricket. It is nice to test your game against the best. It is the competition that drives me. I am just trying to make the most of the opportunities that I get.”

Jack Homer

Curran is going to begin his first professional job as a financial analyst in the coming months. Until then, he’s going to enjoy whatever competition he can. Curran said that at Whitemarsh Valley, solid and steady golf will be key to advance, not trying to scorch the course with birdies.

“I’ve put so much heart and soul into the game throughout my life and to be able to get this confirmation, it means so much to me,” Curran said. “For me to remain positive in such a hard final college season is something I am proud of. As a result of learning from that challenging time, I have been able to accomplish something I have been wanting to for a long time.”


Wilmington Country Club’s Jack Homer carded a hole-in-one on No. 7 (par 3, 162 yards) at North Hills Country Club. Homer, a rising senior at Tatnall School, jarred a pitching wedge for his first career ace.

Celebrating Amateur Golf since 1897, GAP, also known as the Golf Association of Philadelphia, is the oldest regional or state golf association in the United States. It serves as the principal ruling body of amateur golf in its region. The organization’s 345 Member Clubs and 110,000 individual members are spread across Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and Maryland. The GAP’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.

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