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88th Francis B. Warner Cup

Galloway’s Burke wins in Senior debut

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. — Like a biker leaning against a high school locker, Bill Burke plays it cool. He calmly determines a yardage, swings his club of choice, retrieves a lit cigar and casually puffs until the next shot.

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A no-nonsense kind of guy.

“It’s my life attitude actually. I don’t let anything bother me. I just live life,” Burke, 55, of Little Egg Harbor, N.J., said. “Golf is just a game. You focus for 15 seconds, then I go back. Nothing bothers me. I try not to worry about the little stuff.”

Burke certainly bothered the Senior circuit Thursday. The divisional rookie carded a 2-under-par 69 to capture the 88th Francis B. Warner Cup at The 1912 Club (par 71, 6,366 yards).

Little Mill Country Club’s Ed Kahn, LedgeRock Golf Club’s Chris Storck and Philadelphia Publinks GA’s David West shared runner-up honors at 1 under.

“Fabulous,” a smiling Burke said once his victory became official. “I love it. I can’t wait to play in more events.”

Playing in the morning wave, Burke posted his 69 slightly after 11 a.m. Instead of driving 90-plus minutes to his Jersey Shore home, he hung out at the host site. Ate lunch, hit balls, rolled putts, smoked cigars, chilled and almost napped before regulation ended.

“I stuck around because it’s a GAP event. It has more importance to it.

Bill Burke

Oh, and refreshed live scoring presented by NJM Insurance Group “probably 100 times.” Kahn, Storck and West played in the afternoon. Storck, in the day’s last group, emerged as the grandest threat at 3 under with four holes remaining. However, bogeys on Nos. 6 (par 5, 553 yards), 7 (par 3, 160 yards) and 9 (par 4, 362 yards) caused a Burke exhale in the parking lot.

“I stuck around because it’s a GAP event. It has more importance to it,” Burke said “If it wasn’t a GAP event, then I probably would’ve left. It means a lot.”

Starting on the back nine Thursday, Burke registered 10 fairways and 17 greens in regulation, the only miss spearheading the only bogey. Burke left a 7-iron on No. 14 (par 3, 209 yards) short of the putting surface and missed a five-footer to save par.

Back-to-back birdies reset Burke. He stopped a pitching wedge 20 feet flag-high right on the par 3, 135-yard 16th hole. Aimed three feet outside the hole, Burke buried the right-to-left breaker. He reached the No. 17 (par 5, 477 yards) green in two strokes with a 7-iron from 192 yards. A two-putt from 20 feet above a front hole location moved Burke into red figures.

The Galloway National Golf Club member never relinquished said status. On No. 3 (par 5, 495 yards), Burke’s 7-iron from 198 yards settled 10 yards shy of the green. He made a 10-footer for birdie after addressing a front-left hole location with a delicate wedge. Pars therein preserved Burke’s spot atop the leaderboard.

As Burke shook playing partner G. Patrick Dougherty’s hand upon the round’s completion, the latter offered a remark common in these circumstances.

“Great playing, Bill. Hope it holds up for you,” Dougherty said.

And Burke responded on brand.

“It is what it is,” he said.

Competitive golf feels relatively fresh for Burke. He didn’t start in the game until age 28. He, for the most part, only played casual rounds and club championships afterward. Burke did show some competitive mettle by winning 13 club championships overall at Sea Oaks Golf Club. That facility, however, closed in April 2020. Burke soon found a new home in Galloway National. That alone altered his golf trajectory.

“I decided to play more competitive golf only because I play Galloway, which is one of the harder courses to play. It’s sharpened every tool in my game. It’s brought that focus in,” Burke, a field engineering supervisor of 27 years for Comcast, said.

Burke, who saw The 1912 Club for the first time Thursday, intends to fill his competitive schedule this season. Just don’t expect a non-nonsense kind of guy to fill any social media timelines.

“Nobody needs to know what I’m doing. More importantly, nobody cares about what I’m doing,” Burke said.

The Senior circuit cares now.

NOTES
LuLu Country Club’s Christopher Clauson aced No.2 (par 3, 174 yards) with a 6-iron. It marked the sixth ace of his career … Lebanon Country Club’s Craig Kliewer, the event’s defending champion, didn’t compete Thursday.

Francis B. Warner of Philadelphia Cricket Club served as GAP secretary-treasurer for 18 years. After his death in 1933, the Association started the Francis B. Warner Cup as an ongoing tribute in his memory. It is the first Senior Major of the GAP tournament season.

To meet the needs of its members, GAP separated a Super-Senior Division from its traditional Warner Cup counterpart. The Warner Cup – Super Senior, set for May 31 at Bala Golf Club, will feature two divisions: 65 years of age or older (Senior) and 70 years of age or older (Legends). It will be limited to 78 individuals.

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 Association’s 330 Member Clubs and 90,000 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.

Results
Name, clubScore
Bill Burke, Galloway National Golf Club69
Ed Kahn, Little Mill Country Club70
Chris Storck, LedgeRock Golf Club70
David West, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association70
John Alterman, Commonwealth National Golf Club71
Jim Gavaghan, Commonwealth National Golf Club71
Ken Phillips, Lancaster Country Club71
Tom Soares, Lehigh Country Club71
G. Patrick Dougherty, Philadelphia Cricket Club72
Kevin Kelly, Philadelphia Cricket Club72
Rand Mendez, Fieldstone Golf Club72
Joseph Russo, Running Deer Golf Club72
Jeff Shockley, Makefield Highlands Golf Club72
Michael Anderson, Philadelphia Cricket Club73
Adam Armagost, Little Mill Country Club73
Christopher Clauson, LuLu Country Club73
Don Donatoni, White Manor Country Club73
Joe Lebender, Northampton Valley Country Club73
Eric Meyer, Whitford Country Club73
Bob Beck, Lehigh Country Club74
Don Dimoff, Bon Air Country Club74
Brian Dorey, Metedeconk National Golf Club74
Mike Fagan, DuPont Country Club74
Paul Hess, Hartefeld National74
Tom Humphrey, Wilmington Country Club74
Mark Walkush, Sunnybrook Golf Club74
John Barry, Lancaster Country Club75
Mark Choi, Saucon Valley Country Club75
Tom DiCinti, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association75
Buck Jones, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association75
Matthew Kohn, DuPont Country Club75
Paul Rogowicz, Yardley Country Club75
Bill Thornton, LedgeRock Golf Club75
Steve Walczak, Wilmington Country Club75
John Ward, Atlantic City Country Club75
Gregory Buliga, Yardley Country Club76
Richard Colaguori, Spring Ford Country Club76
Jeff Frazier, Carlisle Country Club76
John Gosselin, Aronimink Golf Club76
Mike Hoffman, Coatesville Country Club76
Robin McCool, Saucon Valley Country Club76
Oscar Mestre, Overbrook Golf Club76
Matthew Mingione, The 1912 Club76
Mike Moffat, LuLu Country Club76
Carlos Ochoa, Little Mill Country Club76
Michael Stanley, Aronimink Golf Club76
George Steinmetz, Spring Ford Country Club76
Paul Stewart, Union League Golf Club at Torresdale76
David Strohl, Olde Homestead Golf Club76
James Bell, III, Makefield Highlands Golf Club77
Norman Charlesworth, Wedgwood Country Club77
Jeff Hudson, Olde Homestead Golf Club77
Dennis Konczyk, Union League Golf Club at Torresdale77
Patrick O’Brien, North Hills Country Club77
Michael Vassil, Country Club of Scranton77
Richard Young, Makefield Highlands Golf Club77
David Blichar, Olde Homestead Golf Club78
Tom Borsello, Wyncote Golf Club78
Doug Fedoryshyn, Concord Country Club78
Andrew Lombard, The Springhaven Club78
Larry Martone, Stonewall78
Bill McGuinness, Tavistock Country Club78
Scott McIntosh, LuLu Country Club78
Michael Quinn, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association78
Jeff Rogatz, Wilmington Country Club78
Vince Scarpetta, Jr., Nittany Country Club78
Glenn Smeraglio, LuLu Country Club78
Brian Trymbiski, Doylestown Country Club78
Joe Arrante, Newark Country Club79
Brian Corbett, Country Club of Scranton79
Ronan Culligan, Saucon Valley Country Club79
Tom Finn, DuPont Country Club79
James Gross, Glenmaura National Golf Club79
Drew Harmer, The Springhaven Club79
Jim Prendergast, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association79
Brian Rothaus, Five Ponds Golf Club79
Ron Weaver, Bent Creek Country Club79
John Conway, Little Mill Country Club80
Denis Darragh, Olde Homestead Golf Club80
Mike Farlling, Carlisle Country Club80
Mark Fuessinger, Llanerch Country Club80
Greg Mitchell, Fieldstone Golf Club80
Jules Quinones, Blue Bell Country Club80
P. Chet Walsh, Philadelphia Country Club80
Jim Boburka, Green Pond Country Club81
Gary Dolan, Belles Springs Golf Club81
Fran Hamm, Country Club of Scranton81
Kevin Sartell, Wild Quail Golf & Country Club81
Jim Sherma, Hershey Country Club81
Chip Studer, North Hills Country Club81
Rich Thon, The Springhaven Club81
Don Uhrig, LedgeRock Golf Club81
Gregory Day, Old York Road Country Club82
Robert Harrington, Merion Golf Club82
Edward Kelly, Old York Road Country Club82
Stephen McIntyre, French Creek Golf Club82
Michael Moonan, Trenton Country Club82
John Puskar, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club82
Alan Wagenschnur, Frog Hollow Golf Club82
Byron Whitman, Berkshire Country Club82
Buddy Aiken, St. Davids Golf Club83
J.R. Cattoni, Huntsville Golf Club83
Elliot Sheftel, Lehigh Country Club83
James Witt, Commonwealth National Golf Club83
Gary Daniels, Applebrook Golf Club84
John Nottage, Commonwealth National Golf Club84
Drew Panebianco, Five Ponds Golf Club84
Michael Schoedler, Five Ponds Golf Club84
Matthew Smith, Regents’ Glen Country Club84
Frank Corrado, LuLu Country Club85
Joe Duhack, LuLu Country Club85
John Hughes, Honeybrook Golf Club85
Richard Reed, Downingtown Country Club85
Mark Walker, Laurel Creek Country Club85
Henry Wadsworth, Blue Bell Country Club86
Jeffrey Amrhein, Plantation Lakes Golf & Country Club87
Robert Dietrich, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association87
John Luca, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association87
Kenneth Nestor, Sr., Country Club of Scranton87
Dave Loftus, Five Ponds Golf Club88
Brian Sexton, Greate Bay Country Club88
Steven Cucinotti, Talamore Country Club90
Paul Leddy, Golden Pheasant Golf Course90
Timothy Burden, Cedarbrook Country Club95
Bob Wurtz, Philadelphia Cricket ClubNS
Kenneth Bolcavage, Elkview Country ClubWD
Andrew Sterge, Applebrook Golf ClubWD
NS – no show; WD – withdrawal