Rohlfs medals in U.S. Open Qualifying at York
YORK, Pa. — In advance of the MAC Commonwealth Men’s Golf Championship, Riley Rohlfs practiced like a man possessed. The York College senior craved a team victory for his college golf swan song.
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The Spartans, however, finished second, Rohlfs fourth individually in the April 22-23 event. But the residual practice polish remained with Rohlfs Thursday at Country Club of York (par 70, 6,664 yards).
He carded a 3-under-par 67 to earn medalist honors in U.S. Open Local Qualifying administered by GAP. A trio of Maryland amateurs — Nick Barrett, Joshua Eure and Will Wears — also advanced with a score of 1-under-par 69.
The 123rd U.S. Open will take place June 15-18 at The Los Angeles Country Club in Los Angeles, Calif.
“I’ve never tried to qualify [for the U.S. Open] before,” Rohlfs, 21, of Westford, Mass., said. “I hit a lot of iron shots really close. I hit the ball so well and gave myself a ton of birdie opportunities. I’ve been playing here for four years. Our team practices here. I know the course very well.”
That feeling of home involved more than the York grounds. Teammates Gavin Ganter and Matthew Salter also competed Thursday. So did assistant men’s golf coach Zach Billings.
Nicholas Fioravante, a Spartans teammate and Rohlfs’ roommate of four years, served as his caddie.
“We’re like best friends. We know each other’s’ games well,” Rohlfs, a senior at York majoring in business administration, said. “He helps a lot obviously. He’s a really good player too.”
Birdies on three of your first five holes help, too. On No. 2 (par 5, 526 yards), Rohlfs reached the green in two with a hybrid from 235 yards and made a five-footer for 4. His wedge from 92 yards on No. 4 (par 4, 401 yards) hit the flagstick. Rohlfs converted a 10-footer for birdie. As a testament to his irons claim, Rohlfs’ knockdown 8-iron from 150 yards on No. 5 (par 4, 393 yards) stopped a foot from the hole location. His lone outward miscue occurred on No. 9 (par 4, 479 yards). Perhaps Rohlfs gets a bogey pass there; the Spartans typically play it as a par 5.
Rohlfs added a pair of back-nine birdies to his U.S. Open maiden voyage: a pitching wedge 133 yards to a foot on No. 11 (par 4, 422 yards), a 70-yard bunker shot to 10 feet on No. 14 (par 5, 525 yards). His lone inward miscue occurred on No. 12 (par 3, 204 yards), where Rohlfs flailed a 5-iron right and failed to convert a seven-footer for par.
A swarm of Spartans watched Rohlfs close his round on No. 18 (par 4, 384 yards). A sampling of the chatter: “Riley always looks mad. He could be 10 under or 10 over.”
Rohlfs chuckles at the mention.
“I feel like I don’t look mad. I just don’t look really happy,” Rohlfs said. “I don’t know. I feel the emotions. No one says they can see it. I was nervous coming down the last few holes. I wasn’t sure if anyone else was doing well.”
Rohlfs will head to Canoe Brook Country Club in Summit, N.J. on June 5 for U.S. Open Final Qualifying. Upon graduation from York on May 13, he intends to return to a position in outside services at Nashawtuc Country Club in Concord, Mass.
The aforementioned Maryland amateurs share an age bracket: Barrett is 29, Eure 31, Wears 28. They differ in golf lives. Barrett is a UPS driver who plays “a little bit of competitive golf — not a crazy amount.” He never advanced to U.S. Open Final Qualifying prior to Thursday.
“I’m pretty pumped. I just want to enjoy it,” Barrett, of Catonsville, Md., said.
Eure, who played collegiately at the University of Arkansas, is trying to increase his competitive golf volume after a decade of relative dormancy. He won the Maryland State Golf Association Men’s Amateur in 2012 and appeared in two U.S. Amateur Championships (2010, 2014).
“I missed the nerves. You always want to get that nervous feeling on the tee when you know you have to make a good score,” Eure, a Baltimore, Md. resident who works in cyber security sales, said.
Wears, also of Baltimore, Md., quit his software sales job last week to pursue golf fulltime with the intention of turning professional. He missed the cut by five strokes in Monday qualifying for the Korn Ferry Tour’s HomeTown Lenders Championship earlier this week.
“I’ve been playing pretty well lately. I’ve always dreamed of being a golfer. I put it on the backburner after college,” Wears, a Loyola University Maryland alum, said. “It’s an exciting opportunity to have where I can kind of give [golf as a career] a year or so to see what I can do. I’ll play in anything I can to get reps.”
Wears is still connected to his alma matter. He serves as a volunteer assistant coach on the men’s golf team. Also of note, Wears is the grandson of Arnold Palmer.
Naturally, the Maryland amateurs will compete in U.S. Open Final Qualifying June 5 at Woodmont Country Club in Rockville, Md.
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 organization’s 340 Member Clubs and 100,000 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, city, state||Score|
|(a) Riley Rohlfs, Westford, Mass.||67|
|(a) Joshua Eure, Crofton, Md.||69|
|(a) Will Wears, Baltimore, Md.||69|
|(a) Nick Barrett, Catonsville, Md.||69|
|Alternates (in order)|
|Alex Blickle, Reading, Pa.||70|
|*(a) Brian Simpson, Rockville, Md.||71|
|Failed to qualify|
|*(a) Ike Joy, Denver, N.C.||71|
|*(a) Karl Frisk, Spring Grove, Pa.||71|
|(a) Justin Griffith, Allison Park, Pa.||72|
|(a) Ian Patterson, Chambersburg, Pa.||72|
|Ryan Siegler, Baltimore, Md.||72|
|Stephen Bosdosh, Clarksburg, Md.||72|
|Andrew Turner, Lititz, Pa.||72|
|(a) Jeremy Summerson, Victor, N.Y.||72|
|(a) Arnold Cunningham, Nashville, Tenn.||72|
|David Hilgers, Hershey, Pa.||73|
|Cole Miller, New Tripoli, Pa.||73|
|(a) Brock Kovach, Wyomissing, Pa.||73|
|Easton Renwick, Punxsutawney, Pa.||73|
|(a) Sean Boyle, Catonsville, Md.||73|
|(a) Trevor Sweitzer, York, Pa.||73|
|Parks Price, York, Pa.||73|
|(a) Alexander Kim, Conshohocken, Pa.||74|
|(a) Aaron Fricke, Denver, Pa.||74|
|(a) Blake Brown, Hanover, Pa.||74|
|(a) Matthew Salter, Olney, Md.||74|
|(a) Dylan Ramsey, Lebanon, Pa.||74|
|Thaddeus Obecny II, Wheeling, W.Va.||74|
|Christopher Dymek, Brielle, N.J.||75|
|(a) Peter Williamson, Hanover, N.H.||75|
|(a) Hayden Quinn, Leesburg, Va.||75|
|(a) Elmer Hansen, Blue, Bell, Pa.||75|
|Winton Munch, Traverse City, Mich.||75|
|(a) Connor Sheehan, Lancaster, Pa.||75|
|Ross Brown, Scranton, Pa.||75|
|(a) Randy Kurzinsky, Barnesville, Pa.||75|
|Joshua Strausbaugh, Frederick, Md.||75|
|(a) Logan Wagner, Quarryville, Pa.||76|
|(a) Ben Lukehart, Bel Air, Md.||76|
|Alex Willey, Lumberton, N.J.||77|
|Andrew Barbin, Rising Sun, Md.||77|
|(a) Axel Hartman, York, Pa.||77|
|Connor Schmidt, Venetia, Pa.||77|
|Brian Buskirk, Lancaster, Pa.||77|
|(a) Connor Flach, Ellicott City, Md.||77|
|(a) Jean Philippe Parr, Canada||77|
|(a) John Stevenson, Ambler, Pa.||77|
|(a) Jackson Hoovler, Sparrowbush, N.Y.||78|
|(a) Gavin Ganter, Swan Point, Md.||78|
|(a) Rij Patel, Hunt Valley, Md.||78|
|Tyler Newton, Bel Air, Md.||78|
|(a) John Steinberg, Fairfield, Conn.||78|
|(a) Dan Falls, Goshen, Md.||78|
|(a) Andrew Wallace, Narberth, Pa.||79|
|Patrick D’Anthony, New Windsor, Md.||79|
|(a) Shepard Stevens, North Haven, Conn.||79|
|(a) Lane Krosse, York, Pa.||79|
|(a) Brett Rote, Elizabethtown, Pa.||80|
|(a) Chris Schenzel, Chambersburg, Pa.||81|
|(a) Steve Crain, Mechanicsburg, Pa.||81|
|(a) Teddy Seitz, Washington D.C.||82|
|Zach Billings, Bel Air, Md.||82|
|(a) Narabodin Swaengdee, Thailand||82|
|(a) Zach Dixon, York, Pa.||82|
|Harrison Brink, Richmond, Va.||83|
|(a) Christopher Dolan, New Haven, Conn.||83|
|Dylan Yoder, Lewisburg, Pa.||84|
|(a) Aubrey Rothrock, Washington D.C.||84|
|(a) Hunter Duriez, Johnstown, Pa.||85|
|(a) Ryan Felpel, Lancaster, Pa.||85|
|(a) Mitch Burns, Landisville, Pa.||85|
|(a) Sawyer Marten, Lancaster, Pa.||85|
|(a) Payne Baust, York, Pa.||87|
|(a) Gary Carpenter, Crofton, Md.||88|
|(a) Bhum Juangsiribhumseth, Thailand||89|
|(a) Brandon Wilson, Perry Hall, Md.||NS|
|* – determined in playoff|
|(a) – denotes amateur|
|NS – no show|