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ELI NELLIS: State VFW tourney on tap this week

by on June 02, 2013 2:40 AM

I bumped into Ron Janicki at the VFW course Thursday, and he had to remind me that the State VFW Golf Tournament is next weekend.

With the way the calendar works out, I was still in May mode and not expecting the event for at least a couple weeks. Sure enough, the tournament runs Thursday through Sunday, with qualifying Thursday andFriday — most players go Friday — and tournament rounds over the weekend.

Janicki, originally from Ambridge, was in the area, up from his Woodbridge, Va., residence, and found time for a practice round. He is a five-time champion, with the titles all coming in different decades.

The last one came in 2011. Rod Crumbling Jr. is the defending champ. He also won in 2008 through 2010.

Those two top the list of usual suspects contending for the championship, which is also a problem for the event — not enough new players have trickled in. We’ll see next weekend how the top players shake out, and if anyone new joins the mix.


ON THE JUNIOR CIRCUIT: C.J. Hughes, 14, of Indiana, finished 17th out of 36 players in the boys’ 14-and-under division at the Bridgestone Tournament of Champions, the International Junior Golf Tour’s season-ending event, held last weekend at the Grand Cypress Resort in Orlando, Fla.

Hughes finished the season at No. 18 in the tour rankings for his age group — out of 143 ranked players.

He finished with rounds of 78, 79 and 81 for a 238 54-hole score last weekend.


AT MEADOW LANE: Troy Redinger placed his flag the farthest, winning the Memorial Day Flag Event on Monday.

Players get a target score, which is 80 percent of their handicap, and place a flag where their shot lands when they reach the target.

Michael Usko finished second, and Bernadette Sgro-Hodak came in third. Jeremy Flynn, Rick Moorhead, Ellen Blazavich and Dean Tozer rounded out the top seven.

• Tony Super defeated Alex Blazavich, 1 up, in the Snead Bracket in the first match to be played in the Coney Island Meadow Lane Match Play Tournament.

Players are separated into four brackets, with four rounds of play each, and the bracket champions square off at the end of the summer. The first round is scheduled to be completed by next Sunday.

A ladies’ bracket is to be posted this weekend.

• Barbara Peterson and Theresa Wise scored the low net, and Kathy Glassford and Kathy Whitesel had the low gross in the Ladies’ 18-Hole League’s Blind Partners event Wednesday.

Whitesel, Glassford and Flora Isenberg finished in a three-way tie in the special event, lowest total on par-3s, in the 1-30 handicap group, and Wise won the special event in the 31-40 division.

• The Opening Day Scramble was moved from last Sunday to today. The Six-Hole member event is next weekend.

Club pro Elmer Bland said the course is offering daily specials.


AT INDIANA COUNTRY CLUB: Gary Dickie, Matt Keith, Mike Kluchurosky and Bert Ross scored a 119 to win the men’s competition in the Memorial Day Event on Monday. Sally Adamo, Carolyn Stiles, Tanya Martineau and Gail Gerlach tied Darlene Shea, Sandi Gillette, Candy Joseph and Roz Cavalancia at 141 for the women’s title.

Tom Todd, Bryan Force, Joe Marcoly and Dave Iseman finished two strokes behind the men’s champions. Brad Martineau, Dave Mateer, Joe Lombardi and Walt Lewis (125) came in third place, and Dave Hoff, John Pettina, Greg Peles and Larry Kubala took fourth.

Keith registered the longest putt on No. 4, and Jonathan Previte shot closest to the pin on No. 17.

Pat Bonarrigo shot closest to the pin on No. 7 in the women’s event, and Adamo sank the longest putt on No. 18.

• Club pro Dan Braun and assistant Todd Larrimer shot a 71 and finished in a seven-way tie for 15th place in the Club Car Head Pro-Assistant Pro Championship at the Westmoreland Country Club in Export on Tuesday.

The duo carded a 34 on the front nine in the better-ball tournament, but fell off with a 37 on the back.

• The ICC team that just completed its season in the Women’s Golf Association of Western Pennsylvania consisted of Sue McMurdy, Darlene Shea, Katie Tomb, Mary Moore, Sally Adamo, Tanya Martineau, Carolyn Stiles, Sandi Gillette, Johnna Lear, Candy Joseph and Donna Yvanek.


COLLEGE AWARDS: IUP’s Zack Kempa, Kenny Sames and Sean Sweithelm have been named to the NCAA Division II PING All-Atlantic Region team.

They were three of the 13 players selected, tying Davis & Elkins (W.Va.) for the most representation on the team.

Sweithelm, an Indiana High School graduate, earned his second all-region honor. A senior, he had the best year of his career, finishing second on the team with a 74.7 stroke average.

The winner of IUP’s Cecil C. Spadafora Invitational this spring, he finished in the top 10 five other times, including three more top-five finishes.

As a team, IUP won six of 12 tournaments, including its sixth consecutive Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference championship in the fall.

Eli Nellis is a sports writer for The Indiana Gazette.
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