Clark, Menon advance to 64th Junior-Junior Boys’ Final - The Golf Association of Philadelphia

Jul 31, 2012

Clark, Menon advance to 64th Junior-Junior Boys’ Final

  PHOENIXVILLE, Pa. — Combine their last names and you have what sounds like a high-profile law firm: Lukas Clark and Nate Menon. Although the two may be a decade away from holding such office, they’re putting the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s 64th Junior-Junior Boys’ Championship on trial. Clark, of Jericho National Golf Club, and Menon, who calls LedgeRock Golf Club home, posted two victories apiece Tuesday to advance to the Championship Flight final, which begins at 8 a.m. tomorrow.

   “It feels pretty good,” Clark, 13, of Holland, Pa., said.”I played pretty good to get here. I’m excited. Hopefully, I can play good tomorrow and pull out the win.”

   “Lukas and I are really good friends,” Menon, 13, of Wyomissing, Pa., said. “He’s a really good player. Even if I don’t win tomorrow, I’ll be happy because he won.”

  Clark and Menon have known each other for three years. The two compete in U.S. Kids Golf events together.

   “Nate’s a good player,” Clark said. “I beat him a couple of times. He beat me a couple of times. It should be a good match tomorrow.”

  Relying on a steady short game, Clark won four consecutive holes to defeat Phoenixville’s Michael Limongelli, 4&3, in the semifinals. He punched a 6-iron onto the No. 3 (par 4, 335 yards) fairway, hit a wedge to 15 feet and two-putted for a 5. Limongelli flew the green with his third shot and failed to get up-and-down. Clark employed a similar strategy on No. 4 (par 4, 326 yards), guiding his second shot into the middle of the fairway, knocking a lob wedge 45 yards and canning a 10-footer for par. He won No. 5 (par 5, 454 yards) with a par after reaching the green in regulation with a 7-iron from 115 yards. Clark secured his finalist status with a 5 on No. 6 (par 3, 181 yards) after Limongelli found trouble off the tee.

   “I’m not hitting many greens, but I’m making up-and-downs,” he said.

  Menon, the tournament’s No. 1 seed, defeated Cory Hunter of Commonwealth National Golf Club, 5&3, before trumping Evan Brown of Hartefeld National, 5&3. He fired consecutive birdies to open his bout against Hunter and never looked back. Menon also gained an early advantage over Brown with a victory on No. 1 (par 4, 342 yards). He missed the No. 3 green with a 7-iron from 140 yards, but eased a downhill chip to a few feet. Brown, also facing a challenging downhill shot, breezed his by the jar and couldn’t convert the par putt. Menon hit a 9-iron 125 yards to 35 feet below the No. 4 flagstick and two-putted for a 4 and a 3-up advantage. A stupendous 3-wood to six inches on No. 6 closed the case.

   “I had that shot in my first match. I felt comfortable over it,” Menon said.

  Clark and Menon finished as the top two scorers in yesterday’s qualifying round.

  Now in its 64th year, the Junior-Junior Boys’ Championship is open to players from Member Clubs who are 10 to 13 years of age. Phoenixville Country Club last hosted the event in 2003.

  Founded in 1897, the Golf Association of Philadelphia (GAP) is the oldest regional golf association in the United States and serves as the principal ruling body of amateur golf in its region. Its 145 Member Clubs and 57,000 individual members are spread across parts of Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware and Maryland. As Philadelphia’s Most Trusted Source of Golf Information, the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.

Championship Flight
Nate Menon, LedgeRock GC d. Cory Hunter, Commonwealth National GC, 5&3
Evan Brown, Hartefeld National d. Matthew Davis, Aronimink GC, 10 holes
Lukas Clark, Jericho National GC d. Dominic Hagy, Philadelphia Publinks GA, 2-up
Michael Limongelli, Phoenixville CC d. Connor Seifried, Laurel Creek CC, 1-up

Menon d. Brown, 4&3
Clark d. Limongelli, 4&3

First Flight
Nick Wert, Merion GC d. Andrew Desjardins, Waynesborough CC, 10 holes
Billy Civitella, Aronimink GC d. Matthew Civitella, Waynesborough CC, 10 holes
James Gillespie, Jr., Concord CC d. Jake Calamaro, Rolling Green GC, 2&1
Ryan Susanin, Overbrook GC d. Christopher Morrison, Merion GC, 1-up

Civitella d. Wert, 3&2
Gillespie d. Susanin, 4&2

Second Flight
Brian Isztwan, Huntingdon Valley CC d. Frankie Gregor, Huntingdon Valley CC, 4&3
Matt Marino, Waynesborough CC d. Matthew Acker, Huntingdon Valley CC, 3&1
Kevin Civitella, Aronimink GC d. Andrew Kotler, Cherry Valley CC, 10 holes
Rees Kirk, Tavistock CC d. Joseph O’Malley, West Chester G&CC, 3&1

Isztwan d. Marino, 11 holes
Kirk d. Civitella, 2&1

Third Flight
Matthew Brennan, Rolling Green GC d. Jimmy Loftus, Phoenixville CC, 2&1

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