Four area golfers advance to D-11 championship
Palmerton's Logan Kresge shot an 83 to advance to Monday's District 11 championships. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
Tamaqua’s Megan Schoener chips a shot onto the green during Monday’s District 11 golf qualifier. BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS
The goal for area high school golfers on Monday was to make the cut for the District 11 championship.
To do so, they had to deal with a very tricky course that features fast greens and a links layout.
The Olde Homestead course can play long — 6,247 yards for the boys and 5,346 yards for the girls.
This event was akin to a qualifying round for a major tour, ala the LPGA or USGA. The prize was a ticket to Iron Club course in Hellertown next Monday for a shot at a District 11 championship.
“This course can really test you,” said Palmerton coach Mike Brennan, who had Logan Kresge qualify for next week’s biggest challenge.
So how tough was it?
“Of all the times I played this course, it wasn’t too tricky today,” said Kresge, who finished with an 83.
Usually the greens can get to a golfer here, but Kresge had the good fortune of teeing up on the back nine first, before getting to the front, where most of the golfers thought the front greens were more readable.
For the past two years, Kresge had qualified for the district event. And in each of the previous years, he knocked off four strokes.
“I shot a 91 (sophomore) year, last year an 87 and now an 83,” said the 6-5 senior, who was nine strokes over par and finished second in Class 2A right behind Moravian Academy’s Evan Eichenlaub.
Weatherly’s Ben Ramirez, who placed seventh with a score of 93 and advanced to next week’s district play, might have had the most impressive score on any hole. Ramirez carded a nifty eagle on Hole No. 1, where he used a sand wedge from 85 yards out. It was his first-ever eagle.
“I used a three wood (off the tee), then used a nine iron and my wedge,” said the junior.
“You can’t use the driver that often,” he said about the course. “There’s a lot of hills, and you can get yourself in trouble if you want to just hit (the driver). So you’ve got to back off it sometimes.”
A total of seven golfers in Class 2A made the cut and will join the rest of the field that qualified from league play last week.
The two best rounds of the day came from Class 3A where Matt Zerfass of Emmaus and Sam Mortazavi of Parkland both shot 73s. Twenty golfers from the 3A field advanced.
On the girls’ side, seven golfers also made the cut. Included among them were Mary Scully of Pleasant Valley and Tamaqua’s Megan Schoener, who had a tough front nine before putting things together over the back nine.
“I left things get into my head a little bit on the front,” said Schoener who shot 60 through nine holes before closing with a 47. “My coach (Matt Stine) told me just go out and have fun, and that’s the (attitude) I had over the last nine holes, which was great.”
Stine felt all along that Schoener could make the cut.
“We were getting updates and when she had that (60), I still felt that if she cleared her head, that she could do better. Of course, the toughest hole was on the back nine, 15. A lot of golfers have trouble with the (par 4)… it’s uphill.”
For Scully, the junior said the toughest hole for her was the 16th, which played 491 yards from the tees and a par 5. After shooting a 48 on the front, she turned it around with a 45.
“The greens changed throughout the day, they started really fast, then slowed down as the day went by,” said Scully, who posted her best score ever at Olde Homestead.
Scully tied for second with Moravian’s Keeler Nichols, with both shooting rounds of 93. Schoener carded a 104 to finish fifth.
Saucon Valley’s Emma Shelby turned in the top score with an 87.
TOUGH COURSE … The fact that high school golfers seldom get to play a links course makes it tough. “A lot of hills, up and down and the weather was good, not hot,” said Pleasant Valley golf coach Steve Krechel.
FOUR PAR 5S … Olde Homestead has four par 5s, two on the front and two on the back nine. The early mist made for slow greens.
HOLE 1 RATED TOUGHEST … The opening hole, a par 5 — 514 yards from the tips, 498 from the whites and 482 from the blues — is rated the No. 1 handicap hole. Hole No. 16 is the second toughest, while the par 3, 13th hole is rated the easiest.
MISSING THE CUT ... Two other area golfers competed in the Class 3A qualifier, but missed the cut. Northwestern’s Jake Dellicker shot a 95, while PV’s Steve Ottman finished with a 97. The cut line was 87.
BOYS CLASS 2A
(93 or lower advances)
1. Evan Eichenlaub (Moravian) 83, 2. Logan Kresge (Palmerton) 83, 3. Alex Suter (Salisbury) 88, 4. Joe Smith (Moravian) 89, 5. Damyan Miller (Schuylkill Haven) 92, 6. Brandon Lucas (North Schuylkill) 93, 7. Ben Ramirez (Weatherly) 93, 8. Tanner Ruth (Salisbury) 95, 9. Karson Felty (Pine Grove) 96, 10. AJ Suraci (Notre Dame-GP) 100, 11. Jonathan Dario (Pen Argyl) 100, 12. Will Conroy (Mahanoy Area) 104.
BOYS CLASS 3A
(87 or lower advances)
1. Matt Zerfass (Emmaus) 73, 2. Sam Mortazavi (Parkland) 73, 3. TJ Bohl (Nazareth) 74, 4. Jason Koch (Stroudsburg) 75, 5. Trevor Grimm (Parkland) 76, 6. Joey Altemose (Liberty) 78, 7. Trevor Schubert (Easton) 79, 8. Jake Haberstumpf (Freedom) 79, 9. Ben Bentz (Stroudsburg) 80, 10. Owen Fahs (Nazareth) 81, 11. John Keba (Emmaus) 82, 12. Colin Wong (Emmaus) 82, 13. Nathan Myers (ACC) 82, 14. Chris Andrews (Southern Lehigh) 84, 15. James Kelly (Parkland) 85, 16. Kohry Long (ACC) 86, 17. Chase Skrapits (Nazareth) 87, 18. Andrew Sawarynski (Northampton) 87, 19. Ryan Evans (Liberty) 87, 20. Nate Seidel (Emmaus) 87, 21. Pierce Argot (PM East) 88, 22. Roman Lisicky (Southern Lehigh) 88, 23. Sean Jaeger (Emmaus) 89, 24. Bryson Hicklin (Nazareth) 91, 25. Freddy Bacon (Bangor) 91, 26. Colin Zavacky (Saucon Valley) 92, 27. Drew Bohl (Nazareth) 92, 28. Owen Slimm (Nazareth) 93, 29. Ryan Stettler (PM East) 94, 30. Ryan Armstong (PM West) 94, 31. Jake Dellicker (Northwestern) 95, 32. Michael Vital (Liberty) 95, 33. Aaron Janis (ACC) 97, 34. Steve Ottman (Pleasant Valley) 97, 35. Ethan Haas (Wilson) 99, 36. Noah Fredericks (Pottsville) 105, 37. Antonio Capille (Whitehall) 111.
GIRLS CLASS 2A/3A
(110 or lower advances)
1. Emma Shelby (Saucon Valley) 87, 2. Keeler Nichols (Moravian) and Mary Scully (Pleasant Valley) 93, 4. Emilie Wright (ACC) 103, 5. Megan Schoener (Tamaqua) 104, 6. Anna Heimings (Bethlehem Catholic) 106, 7. Leyna Warner (Nativity) 107, 8. Danielle Crenshaw (Parkland) 116, 9. Natalie White (Bangor) 118.