Jul 24, 2023

16th Brewer Cup: Stroke-Play Qualifying

Clauson, Humphrey share Super-Senior medal

LAFAYETTE, HILL, Pa. – Mark Walkush knows what it’s like to start strong but not follow through.

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After finishing one shot off medalist honors in the Senior Division of the Brewer Cup last year at Blue Bell Country Club, Walkush garnered the No. 5 seed. In his first match after 14 holes, he was in his car headed home thanks to a 5&4 lashing by No. 12 seed Mark Czerniakowski of LuLu Country Club.

“I was a bit too relaxed in my first-round match last year and I got beat up,” Walkush, 57, North Wales, Pa., said. “I got down early and I never recovered. I need to come out hot and make some putts to get some momentum.”

Mark Walkush

Walkush, a William Flynn enthusiast based on a 25-plus year stint as a member of Manufacturers’ Golf & Country Club, took medalist honors in the Senior Division of the 16th Brewer Cup at Flynn’s Green Valley Country Club (par 71, 6,433 yards).

“I was at Manufacturers’ for more than 25 years so I have an affinity for William Flynn golf courses,” Walkush said. “Positioning yourself off the tee is important here. Hitting your approaches on the greens is beneficial in relieving stress around the greens. The greens are receptive because of the rain so it was nice throwing darts in there.”

Walkush got started with a dart on No. 4 (par 3, 167 yards). He speared a 8-iron that landed two feet from the cup. After two bogeys to round out the remaining holes on the front, the Sunnybrook Golf Club member got on a roll.

He rolled in a 10-foot downhill slider for birdie on No. 11 (par 5, 504 yards). He chiseled a gap wedge from 110 yards to 10 feet for a birdie on No. 14 (par 4, 351 yards). He closed with an exquisite expose of balance with a 9-iron from 130 yards to 10 feet on the last (par 4, 392 yards) for a birdie.

On a severe downhill lie, Walkush stayed in his posture and pured it. Nothing but the center of the cup on the putt.

“My golf game has been a bit of work lately. I have had a couple lessons recently that have helped turn things around,” Walkush said. “I hit my iron shots much better and more solid than I have been. From that standpoint, it was a good day.”

During his mid-adult years, golf was not a priority. His sons Alex and Derek were rowers. Derek rowed collegiately at Georgetown University.

“I didn’t play a lot in my younger days because my kids were rowers and we were always near the water on the weekends,” Walkush, who works in the pharmaceutical industry, said. “Now that they have finished school, I have got back into competitive golf again. I am enjoying it. There are a great group of guys here and GAP is a great organization. It is a lot of fun.”

Walkush gets No. 16 seed Andrew Sterge of Applebrook Golf Club in the Round of 16 at 7:30 a.m. Sterge got the last spot in match play after a 7-for-6 playoff. The quarterfinals will take place following the conclusion of the Round of 16 matches.

“I love to compete,” Walkush said. “Golf is one of those sports you can still play at my age. I love the challenge of the game. We are spoiled here in Philadelphia with such great golf courses. I work hard at the game to play the best I can.”

Super-Senior Division

Super Seniors Christopher Clauson of LuLu Country Club and Tom Humphrey of Wilmington Country Club are no strangers to GAP Super-Senior success. Today, the seasoned shooters shared medalist honors by carding 2-under 69s in the Super-Senior Division of the Brewer Cup at Green Valley (par 71, 5,993 yards).

“I looked at the leaderboard on the ninth fairway which was my 18th hole and I saw that the medalist was at 69,” Humphrey, 71, of Rockland, Del., said. “I took my 9-iron and I went flag hunting. I hit a good shot and made a good putt, so all and all it was a good day.”

Tom Humphrey

The aforementioned 9-iron traveled 143 yards and stopped six feet from the hole on No. 9 (par 4, 360 yards). He rolled in the downhill putt for his final red figure to grab a share of the medal.

He hunted birdies on four other occasions and mixed in three bogeys to get to the magic number.

On No. 11 (par 5, 477 yards), a hybrid from 220 yards landed just over the green. A chip and a putt resulted in his first red figure. On the No. 3 (par 5, 485 yards), Humphrey holed an easy birdie putt after his 58-degree wedge from 76 yards settled two feet from the hole. Another red number came on No. 5 (par 4, 378 yards) after a pitching wedge landed five feet from the hole. On No. 6 (par 4, 370 yards), Humphrey’s 9-iron landed 10 feet away from the hole. He rolled in the putt for another birdie. 

“I love the Brewer Cup, it’s one of my favorite [events],” Humphrey, who led after Day One of the 2013 Senior Amateur at Huntingdon Valley Country Club, said. “I love GAP events in their entirety.”

Clauson, who captured his share of the medal during the day’s morning wave, found something in his game.  

“I’ve been hitting the ball well, I just haven’t been converting,” Clauson, 66, of Chestnut Hill, Pa., said. “This has been the best ball-striking I’ve had all year. I might have missed one fairway all day.”

Christopher Clauson

An Autoflex shaft in his driver made all the difference.

“For whatever reason it just kicks right where I want it,” Clauson said. 

He carded two birdies on the day. On No. 1 (par 4, 338 yards), a wedge from 78 yards stopped 10 feet from the pin. He drained the putt for his first red figure. On the No. 15 (par 3, 183 yards), a 5-iron Clauson regarded as his “best shot of the day” landed six feet from the hole resulting in another birdie.

In 2018, Clauson won the Senior Amateur Championship. In 2022, he captured the Super-Senior Division of the Frank H. Chapman Memorial Cup.

Quarterfinal matches begin tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. Clauson, the No. 1 seed, will face No. 8 seed John Conway of Little Mill Country Club who grabbed the last match play spot after a 3-for-1 playoff. Humphrey, the No. 2 seed, will face No. 7 seed Tom Bartolacci of LuLu at 8:45 a.m. The semifinals and Final will take place on Wednesday.

The Brewer Cup is named in honor of O. Gordon Brewer, Jr., the former president of Pine Valley Golf Club. He is a two-time U.S. Senior Amateur Champion and veteran of 42 USGA Championships. He’s captured two Golf Association of Philadelphia Amateur Championship titles (1967, 1976), a GAP Senior Amateur Championship crown (1997) and a Senior Player of the Year (1997) as well as countless invitational titles. He is a recipient of the USGA’s Bob Jones Award and a member of the GAP Hall of Fame.

GAP
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 340 Member Clubs and 100,000 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.

Qualifiers
Senior Division
Name, clubScore
Mark Walkush, Sunnybrook Golf Club69
G. Patrick Dougherty, Philadelphia Cricket Club71
Paul Rogowicz, Yardley Country Club71
Bob Gill, Fox Hill Country Club71
John Barry, Lancaster Country Club71
Steve Walczak, Wilmington Country Club71
Bob Beck, Lehigh Country Club72
David West, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association72
Michael Quinn, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association73
Brian Groff, Lancaster Country Club73
*Adam Armagost, Little Mill Country Club74
*Jason Barkley, Moselem Springs Golf Club74
*George Steinmetz, Spring Ford Country Club74
*Gregory Buliga, Yardley Country Club74
*Chris Caba, RiverCrest Golf Club & Preserve74
*Andrew Sterge, Applebrook Golf Club74
Failed to qualify
*Glenn Smeraglio, LuLu Country Club74
Joe Roeder, Merion Golf Club75
Bill Davis, Merion Golf Club75
Rand Mendez, Fieldstone Golf Club75
Joe Coulson, Wedgewood Golf Course75
Byron Whitman, Berkshire Country Club75
Kevin Wall, Old York Road Country Club75
Ron Weaver, Bent Creek Country Club75
Rufino Rosal, DuPont Country Club75
Neil Gordon, Doylestown Country Club76
Ed Kahn, Little Mill Country Club76
John Alterman, Commonwealth National Golf Club76
P. Chet Walsh, Philadelphia Country Club77
Kevin Sartell, Wild Quail Golf & Country Club77
Joe Jasinski, Steel Club78
Andy Lykon, Wedgewood Golf Course78
Jeff Moyher, Merion Golf Club78
Ronan Culligan, Saucon Valley Country Club78
John Gosselin, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club78
Michael Fireman, Philadelphia Cricket Club78
Oscar Mestre, Overbrook Golf Club79
Michael Anderson, Philadelphia Cricket Club79
Barry Cahill, Radley Run Country Club79
Joe Arrante, Newark Country Club79
Doug Fedoryshyn, Concord Country Club79
Mark Hutchinson, Lookaway Golf Club79
Thomas Egolf, Southmoore Golf Center79
Andrew Speaker, Jericho National Golf Club80
Mark Choi, Saucon Valley Country Club81
Gregory Day, Old York Road Country Club81
Michael Tash, Little Mill Country Club81
Carlos Ochoa, Little Mill Country Club82
Brian Corbett, Country Club of Scranton82
Matthew Mingione, The 1912 Club82
Scott Minor, The 1912 Club83
Michael Stanley, Aronimink Golf Club83
Patrick O’Brien, North Hills Country Club83
Mark Kosko, Greate Bay Country Club83
Andy McCormick, Rolling Green Golf Club83
Paul Leddy, Seaview Country Club83
Fred Lening, Green Pond Country Club84
Steven Harris, Hartefeld National87
Alex Campbell, Cedarbrook Country Club87
Jon Thomas, White Clay Creek Country Club89
Bryan McClaskey, Merchantville Country Club90
Scott McIntosh, LuLu Country ClubWD
James P. Gross, Glenmaura National Golf ClubWD
Qualifiers
Super-Senior Division
Name, clubScore
Christopher Clauson, LuLu Country Club69
Tom Humphrey, Wilmington Country Club69
Joseph Russo, Running Deer Golf Club71
Michael Vassil, Country Club of Scranton71
Vince Scarpetta, Jr., Nittany Country Club71
Don Donatoni, White Manor Country Club72
Tom Bartolacci, LuLu Country Club72
*John Conway, Little Mill Country Club73
Failed to qualify
*Scott Carney, Commonwealth National Golf Club73
*Alan Wagenschnur, Newark Country Club73
Gary Daniels, Applebrook Golf Club74
Robin McCool, Saucon Valley Country Club74
Ed Short, Carlisle Country Club74
John Robinson, LuLu Country Club75
Brian Rothaus, Five Ponds Golf Club75
Robert Dietrich, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association76
Joe Cordaro, Saucon Valley Country Club76
Craig Scott, Glen Brook Golf Club76
Frank Corrado, LuLu Country Club76
Jeffrey Allen, Wild Quail Golf & Country Club76
Bob Billings, Rolling Green Golf Club77
Jimmy Muller, Manufacturers’ Golf & Country Club77
Roc Irey, LuLu Country Club77
Elliot Sheftel, Lehigh Country Club77
Tom Hyland, Little Mill Country Club77
Ron Vannelli, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association77
Tom DiCinti, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association78
Mike Farlling, Carlisle Country Club78
Rich Thon, The Springhaven Club79
Robert Schubach, Wedgewood Golf Course79
Drew Panebianco, Five Ponds Golf Club80
Mike Moser, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club80
Vince Yost, Cedarbrook Country Club80
Tom Mallouk, Lookaway Golf Club80
Sheldon Pollack, Bala Golf Club80
Richard Umani, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association81
Chuck Caparo, The 1912 Club81
William Chase, Regents’ Glen Country Club82
Brian Sexton, Seaview Country Club83
Bob Dorsey, Medford Lakes Country Club85
Kit Conner, Carlisle Country Club86
WD – withdraw
* – determined in a playoff

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