Ben Reese's most recent notebook highlights a Pennsbury team that is battling CR North for the National Conference's top spot.
By BEN REESE
Pennsbury and Council Rock North entered Tuesday's match at Jericho National with unblemished records.
That was only because the two Suburban One League National Conference powerhouses hadn't played each other yet.
North won the match 195-204, handing the Falcons their first defeat of the season. But Pennsbury coach Glenn Goldsborough knows that his team has another chance.
The two teams are back on the course, this time at Yardley Country Club, the Falcons' home course, on Thursday.
“We had our opportunities,” Goldsborough said of Tuesday's match. “For the first time all season, all of our guys didn't play well on the same day.”
The defeat has some bearing on the SOL National title and the possibility of a spot in the District One team competition.
“Since they won by nine today,” Goldsborough explained, “in order for us to win the National outright, we have to beat them by 10 strokes Thursday.
“It looks like we should have nine members qualified for the Suburban One tournament. If that's the case, if we don't beat North Thursday, we have a chance for the wild card spot.”
The way the Falcons have ripped through their schedule, winning their first 14 matches this season, the wild card spot for the districts might not sound like a lot. But you must consider what they are putting on the course.
Jackie Rogowicz is a proven talent. That can't be denied.
She won the SOL girls title and the Eastern regional last year and finished second at the PIAA Championship and fourth in District One. All that came in her freshman season.
“She's a quiet leader,” Goldsborough said. “In ninth grade, she didn't say much. Now she's coming out of her shell.
“I know a lot of people like to play with her because she takes the game seriously and leads by example. I consult with my two captains about lineups, etc. But I also talk to her.”
Goldsborough can only stand in awe of her play.
“Her swing is a beauty to watch,” he said. “She has to work on her short game (proving she isn't perfect).
“Her strength is her length. When she can't hit the longer clubs, it detracts from her advantage. But she is good.”
Another player has moved to the forefront for Pennsbury this year. He is Vinay Ramesh, who is, like Rogowicz, only a sophomore.
“Vinay has been a standout this year,” said Goldsborough. “He's gotten even better.
“From the way he played over the summer, he's learned how to play with the better players. But he's also learned how, when he doesn't have his best game, to make a good round out of it.”
Ramesh is currently eighth in the SOL in handicap differential at 1.75 and Rogowicz is 11th at 2.05.
Goldsborough has several seniors on his team including Ryan Foll, Jason Millen, Dylan del Vecchio and Mike Hammar. Foll is 17th in handicap differential in the SOL with del Vecchio 32nd and Millen 38th. Junior Hank Kaufmann is also in the top 50, standing 27th.
“Every year, Ryan Foll has steadily progressed to become one of the better players on the team,” Goldsborough said. “Jason didn't play in any tournaments this summer, but he played every day. I'm surprised how well he is playing.”
Now everything points to Thursday for Pennsbury. But that's the way it is in golf: One good day can make a season.
Upper Dublin's Andrew Carber has taken over the lead in handicap differential at -0.47. He leads Council Rock North's Zach Herr, who is at -0.06. Jalen Griffin of Wissahickon is third, CB East's Stewart Rickenbach is fourth and Wissahickon's Jesse Hunsicker is fifth. … After saying that there were a few teams putting all five golfers under 40, things ballooned. In the last two weeks of reported scores, Wissahickon, Plymouth Whitemarsh and CR North have all gotten to that spot. The Trojans put up 185 points to beat Norristown on Sept. 21 with Hunsicker shooting 34, Griffin 35, Rishab Kumar 38 and Alex Kim and Kevin Edwards 39 at Jeffersonville. The Colonials shot a sterling 182 to top Cheltenham Sept. 20 at Melrose Country Club as Evan Beaty shot 34, Zak Glaser and Dom Aprile 36, Dave Pontari 37 and Carter Field, John Hansel and Jack Mingione 39. The Indians topped Bensalem with 188 points on Sept. 19 as Zach Herr fired a 33, Erica Herr a 38, Madeline Herr, Austin Fugelstad and James Twomey a 39. … The Suburban One championships are almost here. The boys’ title and the team title with be contested on Monday, Oct. 1 at Indian Valley CC. The girls’ championship will be played Wednesday, Oct. 3 at Five Ponds Golf Club in Warminster. They will be followed by the District One Championship at Turtle Creek on Tuesday, Oct. 9, and Wednesday, Oct. 10.