#GAPMidAm Day One: Recap

Philadelphia Publinks’ Flanigan plays early, goes low

NEW HOPE, Pa. – His name may be a mystery in GAP circles, but Sean Flanigan’s game needs no Scooby Doo detective agency.

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Flanigan, a reinvigorated talent of Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association, surprised the 39th Middle-Amateur Championship field at Jericho National Golf Club (par 72, 6,813 yards) Tuesday. He carded a 4-under 68 playing in the second group to start on the back nine in the morning to take the first-round lead of the Association’s first Major of the season.

Cole Willcox, the 2008 BMW Philadelphia Amateur runner-up, stands alone in second place at 3 under. Three players – John Barone, Glenmaura National Golf Club; Brandon Dalinka, The Ridge at Back Brook and Troy Vannucci, Little Mill Country Club – sit at 2 under.

All five competitors had a morning wave tee time where the scoring average was 77.3 strokes. An afternoon breeze pushed the afternoon scoring average up to 79.6. The low score from the afternoon groups was even.

Defending champion Scott McNeil, also of Philadelphia Publinks, missed the cut, shooting 80.

The cut line fell at 6-over 78 with 73 players advancing from the original 144-player field. Tee times for the second and final round begin at 7:30 a.m.

The last group – Dalinka, Flanigan and Willcox – tees off at 11:50 a.m.

Work and family interrupted Flanigan’s competitive game after graduating from Duquesne University in 2003. However, with his son Gavin now 13, and a little more free time available, Flanigan recently started ramping up his competitive golf agenda. Last year, he missed qualifying for the New Jersey State Golf Association Amateur Championship by a stroke. This year, in his very first GAP event, he co-medaled at the Middle-Amateur Championship Qualifying at Medford Lakes Country Club with a 2-under 68.

In his GAP Championship proper debut, Flanigan displayed a heavy dose of mettle. He registered six birdies and two bogeys.

“Life kind of gets in the way,” said Flanigan, 41, of Logan Township, N.J., of his hiatus. “I didn’t stop playing the game. I was doing it more for fun. I’ve dedicated myself a little bit more [lately]. When you put it down for a little while, your attitude changes. It’s kind of one shot at a time. You embrace every moment out there. That’s what you have to do. The mindset you have to have. I knew my game was in pretty good shape. The course suited my eye. You just have to keep it in front of you and birdies will present themselves.”

Flanigan made three birdies on his outward nine: on No. 11 (par 4, 387 yards), he drained a 22-footer; on No. 14 (par 5, 565 yards), he chipped in from 15-feet after finding the back collar and on No. 17 (par 5, 546 yards) crushed driver and hybrid just short of the green before sinking a six-footer for a 4. Two bogeys on that side, including a three-putt on No. 18 (par 4, 407 yards) from 15 feet, put Flanigan at 1 under.

Another bogey on No. 1 (par 5, 574 yards), when “he hit his worse shot of the day,” catching the lip of a fairway bunker, dropped Flanigan to even.

The self-proclaimed grinder answered those leaky shots with a streak of precision, birdieing four of his final seven holes. On No. 3 (par 4, 366 yards), he clipped a 58-degree wedge from 90 yards to three feet; on No. 5 (par 3, 175 yards), he lifted an 8-iron to 12 feet; on No. 7 (par 5, 525 yards) he just missed holing out for eagle from the bunker before tapping in for birdie; and on No. 9 (par 4, 400 yards), he went 3-wood, 56-degree wedge from 127 yards to 20 feet before making the ensuing putt.

Flanigan’s most unlikely round saver of the day came on No. 8 (par 4, 299 yards).

He hit his driver into the right fescue, turned a wedge 90-degrees into the left greenside bunker but got up-and-down from 25 yards to save par.

A civil engineer the last decade for S.T. Hudson Engineers, Inc., a Marine Engineering Solutions company, Flanigan grew up at Lawrence Park Golf Club in Erie, Pa.

He said he recorded a few Top 5 finishes in college but nothing extraordinary. Flanigan did note, however, that at Duquesne he has the distinction of carding the school’s first sub-70 round.

The skills are obviously there. So what does tomorrow hold?

“No expectations,” said Flanigan. “Tee it up and let it fly. I think if I can keep the nerves [in check], the swing feels OK. This game is about on any given Sunday. I’ve put myself in a good spot. I’m just worried about myself. We’ll see what we can do.”

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.

Name, clubScore
Sean Flanigan, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association68
Cole Willcox, Merion Golf Club69
John Barone, Glenmaura National Golf Club70
Brandon Dalinka, The Ridge at Back Brook70
Troy Vannucci, Little Mill Country Club70
Patrick Knott, Merion Golf Club71
Christopher Ault, Yardley Country Club72
Michael Carr, Philadelphia Cricket Club72
Benjamin Feld, Green Valley Country Club72
Russell Hartung, LuLu Country Club72
Dan Keenan, Little Mill Country Club72
Matthew Mattare, Saucon Valley Country Club72
Jared Tendler, Jericho National Golf Club72
Conrad Von Borsig, Philadelphia Cricket Club72
Andy Butler, Huntingdon Valley Country Club73
Jeff Frazier, Carlisle Country Club73
Brian Gillespie, St. Davids Golf Club73
Ben Keyser, Legacy Club at Woodcrest73
John Lalley, Llanerch Country Club73
Jim Sullivan, LuLu Country Club73
Jack Wallace, Riverton Country Club73
Peter Barron, III, Galloway National Golf Club74
A.J. Donatoni, Fox Hill Country Club74
James Egan, Glen Oak Country Club74
Nelson Hargrove, Merion Golf Club74
Jason Wilson, Olde Homestead Golf Club74
John Brennan, Philadelphia Cricket Club75
Michael R. Brown, Jr., LuLu Country Club75
Michael Davis, Merion Golf Club75
Matt Dolinsky, Honeybrook Golf Club75
David Herbst, Hershey Country Club75
Alex Hosier, Briarwood Golf Club75
Alexander Kim, Philadelphia Cricket Club75
David Mecca, Glen Oak Country Club75
Mark Miller, Philadelphia Cricket Club75
Kyle Pritchard, Olde Homestead Golf Club75
Ryan Rigby, Doylestown Country Club75
Sean Semenetz, Philadelphia Cricket Club75
Josh Anderson, LedgeRock Golf Club76
Adam Armagost, Little Mill Country Club76
Matthew Bastian, Rolling Green Golf Club76
Scott Forrester, LuLu Country Club76
Jeff Osberg, Pine Valley Golf Club76
Bryan Ott, Schuylkill Country Club76
Tony Peressini, Lookaway Golf Club76
Sean Seese, Huntingdon Valley Country Club76
Michael Tash, Stone Harbor Golf Club76
Matthew Toto, Laurel Creek Country Club76
Chris Baloga, Briarwood Golf Club77
John Dimler, Northampton Country Club77
Neil Gordon, Doylestown Country Club77
Andrew Keeling, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club77
Sean McMonagle, Tavistock Country Club77
Mike Moffat, LuLu Country Club77
Ross Pilliod, LedgeRock Golf Club77
Stewart Rickenbach, Huntingdon Valley Country Club77
Colin Sanderson, Makefield Highlands Golf Club77
Glenn Smeraglio, LuLu Country Club77
Matt Teesdale, The 1912 Club77
Joseph Tigani, Fieldstone Golf Club77
Bart Tizio, Olde Homestead Golf Club77
Corey Betham, St. Davids Golf Club78
Ryan Cass, Hidden Creek Golf Club78
Zach Dilcher, Hartefeld National78
Beau Guarino, Riverton Country Club78
Kevin Kornuszko, Spring Mill Country Club78
Sean Leonard, Tavistock Country Club78
Brandon Murdock, Llanerch Country Club78
Jamie Slonis, Tavistock Country Club78
Jason Troutman, Frosty Valley78
Jeffrey Victor, Jeffersonville Golf Club78
Jason Weaver, Saucon Valley Country Club78
Michael Zupi, LuLu Country Club78
Failed to qualify for Final Round 
Christopher Clauson, LuLu Country Club79
Jordan Cooper, Legacy Club at Woodcrest79
Mark Czerniakowski, LuLu Country Club79
Steve Kollias, Concord Country Club79
Bill Murray, Burlington Country Club79
Brian Noonan, Frosty Valley79
Regan Papariello, St. Davids Golf Club79
Brandon Raihl, Philadelphia Cricket Club79
Joe Roeder, Merion Golf Club79
Daniel Rudershausen, Bidermann Golf Course79
Justin Spaeth, Cedarbrook Country Club79
Sean Torpey, Doylestown Country Club79
Lodie van Tonder, Sakima Country Club79
Mark Wachter, DuPont Country Club79
David West, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association79
Will Young, Makefield Highlands Golf Club79
Dan Ayars, Sakima Country Club80
Ashley Brasfield, Rolling Green Golf Club80
Brett Brenner, Ramblewood Country Club80
Joseph Eaton, Philadelphia Cricket Club80
Ryan Gelrod, Philadelphia Cricket Club80
Matt Grossman, Green Valley Country Club80
Scott McNeil, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association80
Kevin O’Brien, Cedarbrook Country Club80
Jon Rusk, LuLu Country Club80
Eric Williams, Honesdale Golf Club80
Thomas Coleman, Glen Oak Country Club81
Steven Gerhart, Bensalem Country Club81
David Guertler, Merion Golf Club81
Andy Kerestesy, Running Deer Golf Club81
Joe Kerrigan, Llanerch Country Club81
Wayne Lesage, Aronimink Golf Club81
Bill McGuinness, Tavistock Country Club81
Charles Meadows, Whitford Country Club81
Oscar Mestre, Overbrook Golf Club81
Stephen Seiden, Llanerch Country Club81
Gary Daniels, Applebrook Golf Club82
Tom DiCinti, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association82
Thomas Ferguson, St. Davids Golf Club82
Phil Formica, Yardley Country Club82
Ryan McCarty, Huntingdon Valley Country Club82
David Shields, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association82
David Szegda, Mercer Oaks Golf Course82
Domenick Trentalange, LuLu Country Club82
Jeremy Arner, Blue Bell Country Club83
Matt Monkhouse, Spring Mill Country Club83
Jeff Palmer, Manufacturers’ Golf & Country Club83
Mike Fagan, DuPont Country Club84
Greg Wasserson, Green Valley Country Club84
Tom Wenrich, Heidelberg Country Club84
Stephen Barry, Running Deer Golf Club85
Nathan Fry, Green Pond Country Club85
Scott Kalamar, Green Pond Country Club85
Kenneth Matt, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association85
Ben Rowe, Meadia Heights Golf Club85
Joseph Rueter, Sandy Run Country Club85
Aaron Thieme, Green Pond Country Club85
Tim Wetzel, RiverCrest GC & Preserve85
Todd Baron, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association86
Andrew Blundin, Fieldstone Golf Club86
Kyle Dolby, Waynesborough Country Club86
Zachary Herr, Makefield Highlands Golf Club86
Patrick Prough, Tyoga Country Club86
Theodoros Terezis, Bala Golf Club86
Brett Cybulski, Links Golf Club87
Christopher Peyman, Cherry Valley Country Club87
Brian Lasky, Legacy Club at Woodcrest88
Bradley Roberts, Little Mill Country Club88
Matthew Massott, Legacy Club at Woodcrest89
Christopher Pitts, Tavistock Country ClubWD
Anthony Saltarelli, Philmont Country ClubWD
WD-withdrawal