Jun 27, 2018

Neighbors, AGA newcomer nab Mid-Am/Senior titles

June 27, 2018
Elmhurst Country Club
They’ve known each other for years. They reside in the same neighborhood. Their families are close. They share a passion for golf, yet Kenneth Bolcavage and Christopher Cerminaro never played in a better-ball tournament until this week.
And what a week it’s been. Bolcavage and Cerminaro captured Elkview Country Club’s President’s Day event Monday. Two days later, they reconvened to take the 20th AGA/GAP Mid-Am/Senior Tournament at a rainy Elmhurst Country Club (par 72, 6,691 yards).
Bolcavage and Cerminaro carded an 8-under-par 64 to top the 53-team field. The AGA/GAP Mid-Am Senior Tournament pairs a middle-amateur (age 19-49) with a senior (age 50 and over) in a better-ball format. An individual stroke-play format runs concurrently.
“Our paths never crossed before. We’ve wanted to play in several events, with my state tournament schedule and his schedule, better-ball events haven’t been able to match up,” Cerminaro, 21, said. “Luckily it matched up this year and we were finally able to play together.”
“I’ve known Chris since he was a young kid. I’ve watched Chris progress [in golf] since he was in high school,” Bolcavage, 54, added. “Monday at Elkview was the first time Chris and I played together. We shot 6 under and won it by five shots. That turned out well.”
As did outing No. 2 at Elmhurst.
The Carbondale, Pa. residents caught fire on the property’s back nine. It started with a Bolcavage eagle on the par 5, 481-yard 10th hole. He missed the green by a mere three feet left with a 6-iron from 182 yards. Bolcavage, an Elkview member, then nudged a chip onto the fringe, down the green’s slope and into the jar.
Next came an impressive stretch of golf from his playing partner. Cerminaro, a Glenmaura National Golf Club member, added four consecutive birdies to the team’s scorecard: an up-and-in from 30 yards on No. 11 (par 5, 500 yards), an 8-iron 150 yards to 25 feet on No. 12 (par 4, 434 yards) and pair of three-footers on Nos. 13 (par 3, 161 yards) and 14 (par 4, 323 yards).
“Our target was to shoot 5 under on the back and see where that put us. I got on a hot streak and hit some very good golf shots,” Cerminaro, an incoming senior at the University of North Carolina, said. “It was quite a run.”
Not to be unlisted on the back-nine birdie board, Bolcavage, an insurance consultant, hit a knockdown wedge 96 yards to 20 feet for a 3 on No. 17 (par 4, 365 yards). He and Cerminaro affirmed future playing opportunities on the 18th hole.
“We’ll try to defend our titles in the coming summer,” Cerminaro said.
Individually, Cerminaro won the Mid-Am Division by a stroke over Honesdale Golf Club’s Eric Williams. Bolcavage came a stroke shy of matching White Manor Country Club’s Don Donatoni, who carded a 2-under-par 70 to claim the Senior crown.
Donatoni, the Golf Association of Philadelphia’s five-time reigning Super-Senior Player of the Year, made the two-hour drive to compete alongside son A.J., a Fox Hill Country Club member.
“Anytime you have an opportunity to play with one of your sons or daughters, it’s a special occasion. I committed a while ago to make the trip up there, rain or shine,” Donatoni, 70, of Malvern, Pa., said. “It was more rain than it was shine unfortunately, but it was well worth the trip.”
The rain and wind intensified when Donatoni arrived at the 15th tee (par 3, 173 yards), causing club confusion and an ensuing double bogey.
“I told A.J. along the way that in conditions like this, the one thing that’s more important than anything else is patience because everybody else is playing in the same conditions,” Donatoni said. “Those who can deal with the elements are the ones who have an opportunity to come out on top. Of course, I let it get to me on that hole.”
In true champion fashion, Donatoni recovered with back-to-back birdies. He striped a drive on No. 16 (par 4, 357 yards) and sunk a six-footer following a sharp 56-degree wedge setup. Donatoni chipped in on No. 17 (par 4, 351 yards) with his newly purchased and fitted Callaway Mack Daddy wedge.
Complete results: http://bit.ly/2KdC7VT
Anthracite Golf Association
The Anthracite Golf Association merged with the Golf Association of Philadelphia in 2018. Anthracite, an organization founded in 1951, promotes golf in the Northeastern Pennsylvania region. At the height of its growth, Anthracite included 46 Member Clubs in 18 counties.
Golf Association of Philadelphia
Founded in 1897, the Golf Association of Philadelphia (GAP) 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 260 Full Member Clubs and 75,000 individual members are spread across Eastern Pennsylvania and parts of New Jersey and Delaware. 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.

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