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#GAPMidAm Qualifying: Valley

Barone bests field in #GAPMidAm Qualifying at Valley

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SUGARLOAF, Pa. – A former Temple University Owl donned a different pair of bird wings to begin his Tuesday round at Valley Country Club (par 71, 6,218 yards).

John Barone, a Glenmaura National member, carded a 4-under 67 — including an eagle to begin — to take medalist honors in the final of four GAP Middle-Amateur Qualifying events.

The cut line stopped at 3-over 70 on the day, meaning 11 players advanced to the championship proper.

The 38th Middle-Amateur Championship will take place May 26-27 at Lookaway Golf Club.

Barone’s day began with a bang on Valley’s opener, a par-5, 524-yarder. In fact, all of his damage on the day came on par 5s. This one in particular came after a blasted driver was followed by an approach shot that stopped 30 yards from the green. The preceding chip shot was clipped perfectly, and fell for eagle. Pretty good start to the Qualifying season.

“Honestly, I didn’t think that it was going to go in, but it did,” said the 25-year-old Barone. “That really allowed me to play smart all day from there on out.”

Six-straight pars made way to a birdie on No. 8 (par 5, 552 yards) where a 10-footer was jarred after escaping tree trouble off the tee. The only non-par on Valley’s second side for Barone came on No. 14 (par 5, 522 yards). Barone lifted driver over the creek, hit a 5-iron just in front of the green, chipped up and tapped in for 4. Four two-putt pars rounded out the medalist’s round.

“I’ve only played here once before today, but I thought it was a fun, little track,” said Barone. “I knew the greens were quick and small coming in. And today, honestly, it was an underwhelming 4 under out there. I just played really solid.”

After four highly-successful playing seasons at Temple (2016-19), including a Division I PING all-Northeast Region team nomination in 2019, Barone graduated and headed back home to Dunmore, Pa. He took a short break in 2020 from playing competitively to focus on his professional accounting career. It didn’t take long for the golf itch to find him once again. Barone says he’s ready to get back into GAP Major action in 2021, in addition to a number of Pennsylvania State Golf Associations championships.

“After school, I wanted to just take some time away [from golf], and started to focus on accounting. I didn’t really have a lot of time to take off for golf [in 2020],” said Barone. “Now, I tried to save up a lot of PTO so that I could play and compete again. I’m excited to get back into it.

No stranger to Qualifying medals, Barone has been a mainstay on GAP Major tee sheets since his collegiate playing days. He’ll look to make some noise on the big stage when he steps up to the tee at Lookaway in a few weeks.

“I’ve done well in Qualifying many times now,” said Barone, who bagged his fourth GAP Major Qualifying medal today. “Now it’s time it translates to the real thing.”

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
John Barone, Glenmaura National Golf Club67
Stephen Hudacek, Glenmaura National Golf Club72
Jeffrey Swetland, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association72
Mark Czerniakowski, LuLu Country Club72
Brett Diakon, Commonwealth National Golf Club73
John Hartzell, Shawnee Country Club73
Michael Reese, Eagle Rock Golf & Resort73
Drew Taylor, Huntingdon Valley Country Club73
Cole Clark, Mercer Oaks Golf Course74
Brandon Jackson, Wemberly Hills Golf Club74
Tony Peressini, Lookaway Golf Club74
Failed to qualify
Kevin Rossi, Green Pond Country Club75
Brian Trymbiski, Doylestown Country Club75
James Bresnahan, Rolling Green Golf Club76
James Gardas, Glenmaura National Golf Club77
Lance Oberparleiter, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association77
Matthew Shevlin, Philadelphia Publinks Golf Association77
Michael Kandravi, Llanerch Country Club78
James Wybar, Philadelphia Cricket Club78
Robert Ashford, Saucon Valley Country Club79
Robert Ball, Philadelphia Cricket Club79
Santino Calantoni, Saucon Valley Country Club79
Dan Keenan, Little Mill Country Club79
Eric Shenyo, White Clay Creek Country Club79
Peter Blasi, Jr., Wyoming Valley Country Club80
Rick Frable, Saucon Valley Country Club81
Scott Lawson, Cedarbrook Country Club81
Stephen Northrup, Rolling Green Golf Club81
Jay Pagana, Susquehanna Valley Country Club81
John Burnes, Philadelphia Cricket Club83
Faust Capobianco, Saucon Valley Country Club83
Christopher Detoro, Rolling Green Golf Club83
Drew Krupp, Five Ponds Golf Club83
Scott Lumbatis, Hershey Country Club83
Chris Lucci, Bellewood Country Club84
Seth Hildebrand, Hanover Country Club85
Andrew Maliniak, Schuylkill Country Club85
Justin Masters, Country Club of Scranton86
Matt Knowles, Country Club of Scranton92
Ken Sorick, Fox Hill Country ClubWD
WD – withdrawal