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#GAPJrJr: Day One

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Radley’s Narinesingh-Smith runs #GAPJrJr stroke-play qualifying

FLOURTOWN, Pa. – Improving one’s game can bring genuine satisfaction to virtually any golfer. 

For 13-year-old Kasim Narinesingh-Smith, the rewards of such progression have come quite swiftly.  

Two years removed from missing match play with a round of 58 in the 69th GAP Junior-Junior, and just one year after the lanky long-baller was ousted in a First-Flight match in the same event, Narinesign-Smith took another step forward in his young competitive career. 

On Monday, the Kennett Square, Pa. resident set the pace in the 71st Junior-Junior Boys Championship, part of the GAP Junior Series presented by Citadel, carding a 3-over round of 37 during stroke play at Flourtown Country Club (par 34, 2405 yards).

Narinesingh-Smith was one of 16 players to advance to match play out of a field of 20. The cut line stopped at 45, where a 2-for-1 playoff was held to determine the final match-play participant.

“[I have improved] a lot,” Narinesingh Smith, an incoming eighth grader at Kennett Middle School, said. “I used to be a sprayer. Just straightness on shots when it comes to the long game, and my short game has gotten better.” 

During Monday morning’s stroke play, the Radley Run Country Club member displayed consistent ball-striking and pristine play around the greens. His medalist-earning round was highlighted by a birdie on his opening hole (No. 2, 365 yards), where a lob-wedge approach finished just four feet from the flagstick. Narinesingh-Smith would proceed to sink the birdie, before holing another crucial putt, this time for bogey, on No. 7 (par 4, 267 yards) where he jarred an 8-foot slider down the hill. 

“I didn’t think about much,” Narinesingh-Smith said regarding his play. “I just swung the club.” 

Narinesingh-Smith took the morning momentum into his opening round match where he was able to build an early lead against Llanerch Country Club’s Reilly Shaffer. Shaffer mounted a charge, but Narinesingh-Smith stifled the comeback by sticking a gap wedge from 109 yards to five feet on the final hole (No. 9, par 4, 318 yards). After Shaffer failed to convert his putt for par, Narinesingh-Smith’s birdie, and subsequently, the match, was conceded. 

“I know that since this [afternoon] was not one of my best rounds, I’m just going to learn from the mistakes I made today,” Narinesingh-Smith said following his 2-up victory in the Round of 16. “[Tomorrow I want to] play my own game and try to beat the course, not the person.” 

If he were to win this week, Narinesingh-Smith would add his own hardware to the household trophy case. Kasim’s father, Greg Smith, is the seven-time reigning Winter Series Amateur Net Player of the Year. 

Narinesingh-Smith will face Hidden Creek Golf Club’s Paul Reilly in Tuesday morning’s Quarterfinals. The two will be joined by Kyle Spirit of Talamore Country Club, Jack Homer of Wilmington Country Club, Liam McFadden of Overbrook Golf Club, Jack Dare of Riverton Country Club, J.P. Hoban of McCall Golf Club and Sean Curran Jr. of Merion Golf Club. Matches will commence at 7:30 a.m. 

Now in its 71st year, the Junior-Junior Boys’ Championship is open to players from Member Clubs who are 10 to 13 years of age.

Note: In the playoff, Reilly Shaffer drained a 25-foot birdie putt from off the green on No. 1 (par 4, 318 yards) to advance over Kennett Square Golf & Country Club’s Jackson Puskar. 

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 274 Full Member Clubs and 75,000 individual members are spread across the Eastern half of Pennsylvania and parts of New Jersey and Delaware. The GAP’s mission is to promote, preserve and protect the game of golf.

Citadel
Citadel is a credit union that has provided banking, investments, and insurance services to the Greater Philadelphia community for more than 80 years. At over $3 billion in assets, Citadel is one of the area’s largest locally owned, not-for-profit financial institutions, proudly serving residents of Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lancaster, Montgomery, and Philadelphia counties. Citadel has been ranked number one among all credit unions in Pennsylvania for providing value to customers by Callahan & Associates, and was named one of the best performing credit unions in the nation by SNL Financial. To explore products and services, visit www.CitadelBanking.com.

Round-of-16
1. Kasim Narinesingh-Smith, Radley Run Country Club, d. 16. Reilly Shaffer, Llanerch Country Club, 2-up.
9. Paul Reilly, Hidden Creek Golf Club, d. 8. Joe Ciconte, Wilmington Country Club, 1-up.
4. Kyle Spirt, Talamore Country Club, d. 13. Zach Moua, St. Davids Golf Club, 3&2.
5. Jack Homer, Wilmington Country Club, d. 12. Jack O’Connor, Bellewood Country Club, 4&3.
15. Liam McFadden, Overbrook Golf Club, d. 2. Justin Forman, Running Deer Golf Club, 2&1.
10. Jack Dare, Riverton Country Club, d. 7. Mark Heinz, Huntingdon Valley Country Club, 3&1.
3. J.P. Hoban, McCall Golf Club, d. 14. Evan Hawkes, Yardley Country Club, 2-up.
6. Sean Curran, Jr., Merion Golf Club, d. 11. Tommy Marshall, Medford Lakes Country Club, 4&3.
Stroke-Play Qualifiers
Name, clubScore
Kasim Narinesingh-Smith, Radley Run Country Club37
Justin Forman, Running Deer Golf Club38
J.P. Hoban, McCall Golf Club39
Sean Curran, Jr., Merion Golf Club41
Jack Homer, Wilmington Country Club41
Kyle Spirt, Talamore Country Club41
Joe Ciconte, Wilmington Country Club42
Jack Dare, Riverton Country Club42
Mark Heinz, Huntingdon Valley Country Club42
Paul Reilly, Hidden Creek Golf Club42
Tommy Marshall, Medford Lakes Country Club43
Zach Moua, St. Davids Golf Club43
Jack O’Connor, Bellewood Country Club43
Evan Hawkes, Yardley Country Club44
Liam McFadden, Overbrook Golf Club44
*Reilly Shaffer, Llanerch Country Club45
Failed to qualify
Jackson Puskar, Kennett Square Golf & Country Club45
Joshua Baker, West Chester Golf & Country Club46
Ian Larsen, Honeybrook Golf Club46
Devin Carpenter, GAP Youth on Course49
Walker Mannon, Phoenixville Country Club55
Shane Powelson, Bidermann Golf ClubNS
NS – no show
* – advanced in playoff