Jun 28, 2021

#GAPOpen Qualifying: Trenton

Three take medal honors in #GAPOpen Qual. at Trenton

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TRENTON, N.J. – A sizzling-hot day didn’t translate into sizzling-hot scores. Instead, Monday at Trenton Country Club (par 71, 6,269 yards), it was a battle against a gorgeous golf course — and the unforgiving sun.

A trio of talents topped a field of 72 hopefuls in the final of three GAP Open Championship Qualifying events. Finishing with a share of the medal at 1-over par 72 was Philadelphia Cricket Club’s Marc Mandel, Talamore Country Club’s Patrick Sheehan and LuLu Country Club’s Ron Robinson.

The day’s cut line stopped at 6-over 77, meaning 26 players punched tickets to the championship proper. The 117th #GAPOpen will be contested July 13-14 at Country Club of York.

Mandel, fresh off a win in Philadelphia Cricket’s Stroke-Play Club Championship over the weekend, got in the house first at 1-over par. He utilized four birdies on the day to finish in the top spot.

After blasting driver on No. 1 (par 4, 294 yards), Mandel chipped up to six feet to begin with a 3. A 7-iron on the par-3, 189-yard 5th landed 15 feet away, and the putt was made for his second red figure. Another fell from 20 feet on No. 12 (par 5, 564 yards), followed by a 12-foot make on No. 15, (par 3, 115 yards).

“I just wanted to come out here and kind of just play my game, kind of keep the momentum going,” said Mandel, 39, of Plymouth Meeting, Pa. “It feels good to stay consistent. They key for me is to continue to putt well. Anything can happen [at York] if I do.”

Mandel’s club championship title — his first — has the power-hitter’s game moving in a strong direction. The confidence, and the swing, are both there. If the putter follows suit, watch out.

“I’m really happy with how well I’ve been playing, especially to have gotten some paint at Cricket. I never thought I could compete with those young guys, so I’m proud of getting it done,” said Mandel.

Next in was Sheehan, a rising junior at Penn State University, who jarred three birdies overall, including a 12-footer to begin his roasting round on No. 1. His “best of the day” came on No. 16 (par 4, 350 yards) after a wedge from 110 yards landed to 15 feet and Sheehan drained the testing look.

“I had a tough stretch there, bogeying three in a row on the front,” said Sheehan, 20, of Doylestown, Pa. “I was sloppy today. I hit some good shots here and there, but I just wanted to get in at 1 over and qualify.”

After missing out on BMW Philadelphia Amateur Championship registration, Sheehan now looks to make his first GAP splash in 2021 at the Open. His impressive finish in the Pennsylvania State Golf Association’s R. Jay Sigel Amateur Match Play Championship highlights a quiet summer so far.

“I got medalist honors there [at Sewickley Heights Golf Club] and then fell in the final match, so overall that was a good week for me,” said Sheehan, who has only played in two tournaments so far this summer. “Once July starts, that’s when things start to get busy for me before I head back to school. Hopefully I can do some good things before then.”

Robinson was the third 72 in the house. After a triple bogey 7 on No. 4 (par 4, 447 yards), Robinson went on to finish 2 under for the remainder of the round. A 40-foot birdie bomb, topped off with a fatigued fist pump, rounded it out.

“I kind of hacked it up there on the front, but luckily I played some really good golf coming in. [Trenton] was playing really tough today. Fast,” said Robinson, who reached match play in this year’s BMW Philadelphia Amateur. “And then to make that 40-foot bomb at the end… just wow.”

An official Heat Warning went out in the state of New Jersey Monday morning. Water bottle consumption rate was sky high in result. Robinson said he had to take measures to manage the heatwave throughout the round, and even before teeing off.

“I must of had about 12 water bottles out there today. It was really, really hot,” said Robinson, 22, of Hatfield, Pa. “I started hitting balls at 10 a.m. today, and after a few, I really had to stop because I wasn’t going to have anything left.”

The Open Championship is GAP’s third oldest championship behind the Philadelphia Amateur and Joseph H. Patterson Cup.

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 300 Member Clubs and 80,000 individual members are spread across the Eastern half of Pennsylvania and parts of Delaware, Maryland and New Jersey. The GAP’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.

Qualifiers 
Name, clubScore
(a)Marc Mandel, Philadelphia Cricket Club72
(a)Ron Robinson, LuLu Country Club72
(a)Patrick Sheehan, Talamore Country Club72
(a)Liam Hart, Spring Mill Country Club73
(a)Andrew Keeling, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club73
(a)Richie Kline, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club73
(a)Mark Miller, Philadelphia Cricket Club73
(a)Jamie Slonis, Tavistock Country Club73
(a)John Buliga, Yardley Country Club74
(a)Peter D’Angelo, Burlington Country Club74
(a)Dougie Ergood, Tavistock Country Club74
(a)Scott Lawson, Cedarbrook Country Club74
(a)Jack Tarzy, Medford Lakes Country Club74
(a)Ben Keyser, Woodcrest Country Club75
(a)Lodie van Tonder, Sakima Country Club75
(a)Corey Betham, St. Davids Golf Club76
(a)Brad McFadden, Overbrook Golf Club76
(a)Hayden Moffat, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association76
(a)P. Chet Walsh, Philadelphia Country Club76
(a)Christopher Warner, Makefield Highlands Golf Club76
(a)Todd Baron, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association77
Blake Hinckley, Wilmington Country Club77
(a)Blaine Lafferty, Little Mill Country Club77
(a)Brian Lasky, Woodcrest Country Club77
(a)Jack Wallace, Riverton Country Club77
(a)Thomas Weir, Honeybrook Golf Club77
Failed to qualify 
(a)Ryan Barnett, Union League Liberty Hill78
(a)Timothy Chilleri, Manufacturers’ Golf & Country Club78
(a)Sal Cucinotti, Talamore Country Club78
Barry Dear, Blue Heron Pines Golf Club78
(a)Greg DeLuca, Trenton Country Club78
(a)Joshua Feldschneider, Burlington Country Club78
(a)Gerald Haftmann, Rolling Green Golf Club78
(a)Ahren Henby, Yardley Country Club78
Steve Kiefner, Northampton Country Club78
(a)Austin Schreffler, Armitage Golf Club78
(a)Jeffrey Angelucci, Union League Golf Club at Torresdale79
Chris Dymek, Manasquan River Golf Club79
Bob Hennefer, Laurel Creek Country Club79
Brian Hollins, Links Golf Club79
(a)Dan Keenan, Little Mill Country Club79
(a)Shane Nocito, Yardley Country Club79
Stephen Sanderson, Pine Valley Golf Club79
Curtis Kirkpatrick, Indian Spring Country Club80
(a)Joe Pirozzi, The Ridge at Back Brook80
(a)Benjamin Fiske, Mercer Oaks Golf Course81
(a)Kevin Maguire, Laurel Creek Country Club81
(a)Tony Nocito, Bensalem Country Club81
Kyle Early, Waynesborough Country Club82
(a)Salvatore Galati, Woodcrest Country Club82
(a)Jack Kearns, Trenton Country Club82
Brendan White, Trenton Country Club82
(a)Frank Nattle, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association83
(a)Michael Andreassi, Yardley Country Club84
(a)Jefferey Cai, Mercer Oaks Golf Course84
(a)Brian Piotrowski, Wedgwood Country Club85
(a)Brent Schoeller, Huntingdon Valley Country Club85
Francis Diodato, GOLFTEC-Moorestown86
(a)Andrew Sterge, Applebrook Golf Club87
(a)Mike Walley, Trenton Country Club88
(a)Phil Formica, Yardley Country Club89
(a)Jordan Rosenblatt, Woodcrest Country Club90
Cheech Shukdinas, Dick’s Sporting Goods90
(a)Robert Grife, Little Mill Country Club94
(a)Michael Torrissi, Trump National Golf Club – Philadelphia95
(a)Stephenie Harris, Lookaway Golf Club96
(a)Seth Beard, Broad Run Golfer’s Club98
(a)Fran Begley, Wedgwood Country ClubWD
(a)Stephen Fordyce, Lookaway Golf ClubWD
(a)Jack Mara, Metedeconk National Golf ClubWD
(a)Patrick Pasquariello, Philadelphia Country ClubWD
(a)Brad Sokol, Green Valley Country ClubWD
WD – withdrawal 
(a) – denotes amateur 

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