The Course Report
The Course Report is a chance for you to find out more about regional golf, golfers and courses with staff writer Bob Jarzomski.   Read more about this blog.
Posted: July 25th, 2014

Dick’s Sporting Goods, which offered PGA professional golfers to sell golf equipment and offer lessons and other services to customers, announced July 22 that it will lay off all 478 golf pros employed at its retail stores.

The Findlay, Ohio-based company cited a $34 million shortfall in its projected 2014 first-quarter golf sales, part of a trend in recent years because of lower interest in golf throughout the United States, which caused the decision. In the quarter that ended May 3, Dick’s Sporting Goods made a $70 million profit and stocks that sold at 57 cents per share as compared to $64.8 million and 52 cents per share in 2013, according to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Sales for hunting also declined.

Erie’s Tom Keenan has been the golf pro at Dick’s Sporting Goods in the Millcreek Mall. Keenan is a member of the Western New York PGA. The Dick’s Sporting Goods store near Buffalo, N.Y. has pros Jerry Coleman and his son Dave heading the golf sales.

PGA of America has consultants across the country who will work with the pros affected by the decision.

Bob Jarzomski


Posted in: PGA
Posted: July 20th, 2014

Karlie Zabrosky, a McD0well graduate who will be a junior at Seton Hall, the Big East women’s defending champion, won her third straight Erie District Women’s Golf Association title Sunday, July 20 with a 6 and 4 win over Kathy Lynch in the EDWGA’s 89th Match Play Championship at Lake Shore Country Club.

Zabrosky, at 6-feet tall and strong, hits the ball 250 yards-plus off the tee. Though she does not play many tournaments during the summer, the member at Lawrence Park Golf Club said she will play in the Erie District Golf Association Amateur Stroke Play August 1-3 at Lake View Country Club in North East.

“I’ll probably be the shortest hitter out there,” the 20-year-old Zabrosky said.

Jay Willow, in his third year as EDGA Tournament Director, has been innovative with computerized results, different interclub formats, and putting together the Erie Sports Store Flagship Junior Tour that is for boys and girls, as the young ladies have few area tournaments to compete in during the summer.

“He said there’s nothing wrong with letting me play with the men,”  Zabrosky said. “I’m thankful for the chance. We play longer courses in college, so I dont’ mind hitting from the men’s tees.”

It’s been done on the PGA Tour,  as Annika Sorenstam and Michele Wie played in Tour stops.

Bob Jarzomski

Posted in: College, EDGA, EDWGA
Posted: July 20th, 2014

Gannon men’s golf head coach Dustin Coleman has announced the signing of two-time PIAA  District 7 (WPIAL) Class AA champion Matt Barto (Leechburg, Pa.).

“Matt is one of the best young players in western Pennsylvania and we were thrilled to have him join us this fall,” said Coleman. “He’s the exact type of student-athlete that programs want on their roster. He’s both an excellent player and student. Without a question, he will thrive at both.”

Competing for head coach Heath Shimer at Leechburg HS, Barto clinched four individual sectional championships. He also qualified for three trips to the PIAA State Championship. His best showing came in 2013 as a junior, tying for second place.

Barto has faced  international competition throughout his junior career. Barto has captured a pair of International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) titles with his latest this summer during the Summer Series at Olde Stonewall Golf Club July 8-9 in Cranberry Township. He secured the individual title in the Boys 15-19 Division, shooting a combined total of 145 (71-74). His final round score of 74 aided in earning a share of the Clazic Belts Low Final Round Award.

As a senior at Leechburg, Barto served as president of the National Honors Society and garnered Valedictorian honors. The son of Douglas and Tracy Barto, he plans to study mechanical engineering at Gannon this fall.

The Golden Knights return intact from last season with 10 letterwinners from last year’s squad.

Posted in: College, Juniors
Posted: July 16th, 2014

Andrew Britton, who will attend John Carroll this fall, is doing just fine on the Ohio courses as he has posted three medalist honors, tops for the Boys 16-19 Division on the Capital Auto North Coast Junior Golf Tour.

Britton, who graduated from Cathedral Prep and was the Times-News District 10 Boys Golfer of the Year as he won the D-10 Class AAA title, has been very steady on the NCJT.

Britton had a 27-hole total of 112 to win the Sand Ridge Invitational in Mayfield, Ohio July 7, a 72 for the Punderson Tournament (Newbury, Ohio) crown on June 6 and a 73 for the Tam O’Shanter (Canton, Ohio) title June 28.

Meanwhile, Mercyhurst Prep grad Georgia Capotis, who will move down the hill to Mercyhurst University in the fall, had two wins in the 16-19 girls division. Capotis had a 78 to capture the Glen Eagles title in Twinsburg, Ohio June 26, and an 80 for the Lake Forest honors in Hudson, Ohio on June 16.

The championship is scheduled for July 28-29 at Quail Hollow CC in Chardon, Ohio.

– Bob Jarzomski

Posted in: College, Juniors
Posted: July 15th, 2014

The WNYPGA Lake View Pro-Am Invitational, originally scheduled for early June, is slated for Wednesday, Aug. 6, at Lake View Country Club.

Because of the extreme weather that severely damaged 9 exposed greens on the North East course that had t0 go under intensive repair, the popular pro-am that has raised more than $250,000 since 1990 had to be pushed back into August.

The greens, several of which reopened in late June, are almost back to their normal, and very quick self, according to several members. Veteran superintendent Gordie Seliga and his crew worked at a fever pace to restore the greens.

Lake View will also host the EDGA Amateur the weekend of Aug. 1-3.

– Bob Jarzomski

Posted: July 12th, 2014

Gannon women’s golf head coach Abby Sorensen announced the addition of six incoming freshmen for the upcoming season Friday, including two foreign players. Joining the Lady Knights are Mackenzie Bonnett (Girard, Pa./Girard), Nicole Filipski (Lancaster, N.Y./Lancaster), Marissa Foriero (Baldwinsville, N.Y./Charles W. Baker), Manuela Quevedo Fonseca (Bogota, Colombia/Marymount Bogota), Nicole Richards (Dunlo, Pa./Forest Hills) and Eva Schönander (Askim, Sweden/Katrinelundsgymnasiet).

“This incoming class represents one of the largest in the history of the Gannon women’s golf program, and I couldn’t be more excited about what they can contribute,” said Sorensen. “These freshmen know they have big shoes to fill and have a target on their backs as we try to defend our PSAC [Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference] Championship.

Bennett is a 3-sport athlete at Girard who played with the boys golf team. An outstanding basketball and softball athlete, Sorensen hopes to hone her power in her golf swing.

Filipski finished 31st in the New Yorm state championships as a junior and is considered to have a strong mindset for the longer courses in collegiate golf.

Foriero was captain of the Baker High swim team and Sorensen is eager to help the honor student reach her potential on the golf course.

Richards was a two-time Laurel Highlans All-Conference player and ranked fourth in the district. A Biomedical Engineering major, Richards has improved in her high school career and competed at the state level.

Schönander lived a short distance away from 4-year Swedish standout Amanda Teodorsson. She has won junior titles in the Czech Republic and the club  title at Gothenberg Golf Club.

Fonseca shot rounds of 69-75-72 in the Torneo Aniversario tournament at Tornea Aniversario Tournament. Her mother Rocio Fonseca was the head coach of her team in Bogota, Columbia and she loves the game. Fonseca will be a criminal justice major, and will benefit from Gannon’s brank new Forensic Investigation Center.


Bob Jarzomski


Posted in: College
Posted: July 10th, 2014

Want to take on a college course for free?

Since Penn State Behrend purchased the property when Gospel Hill Golf Club closed down about three years ago, the short front nine had remained open and well-maintained for students or anybody who visits the course off of Station Road, and costs nothing to play.

Joe Callari can attest to that.

On July 3, Callari, playing with two other fellows, aced the 127-yard No. 4 hole with a 9-iron, the third for the 47-year-old.

“I got my first at Gospel Hill years ago, and my second in DuBois at Treasure Lake,” Callari said. “I guess luck was with me again when I got my third.”

Callari said Gospel Hill, which was a unique par 33-37 that was short and tight on the front with three par-3s and long and wide open on the back with three par-5s, is in great shape.

“To be honest, it’s in better shape now than in the last several years when it was open. The greens are nice and the fairways are cut,” he said.

And, the price is right.

– Bob Jarzomski


Posted in: Uncategorized
Posted: July 7th, 2014

Brett Rinker of Slippery Rock, the 2012 District 10 Class AAA golf champion, who had an outstanding freshman year at Bowling Green State University, has been named the recipient of the Frank Fuhrer, III, Award given annually to the area’s outstanding collegiate golfer.

The Western Pennsylvania Golf Association recently  announced the award.

Rinker averaged 73.3 strokes for 31 competitive rounds with five top ten individual finished. He had four rounds in the 60’s, and finished the season  with a 9th place finish in Penn State’s Rutherford Intercollegiate and a 5th place in the Mid-American Conference Championship. He was selected the Division I Mid-American Conference’s freshman of the year. Also under consideration was last year’s recipient, Joshua Stauffer, of Bradford, a sophomore at St. Bonaventure, Olean, NY, and Garret Browning, Coraopolis, who will be a junior at Robert Morris University.

Rinker won the D-10 AAA tournament at Grove City Country Club, then finished second in PIAA Class AAA play by one shot in the state finals played at York’s Heritage Hills Country Club. In 2010, he took third in PIAA, which was open class at the time before switching to two classes.

The award is named after Frank Fuhrer, III, whose collegiate career at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, included All ACC and All-American honors and membership on the 1981 Walker Cup team.

- Bob Jarzomski

Posted: June 27th, 2014

The Erie Sports Store Flagship Junior Golf Tour gained swift popularity with youngsters in its inaugural 2013 season, and after 3 stops is averaging nearly 70 boys and girls participating.

Erie District Golf Association tournament director Jay Willow, who initiated the idea of having several 1-day tournaments at a cost of $30 per round, said he was hoping for about 25 kids to show up weekly, but more than 50 participated in the first event and caught on with the youngsters searching for tournaments to play in during the summer.

“I was really surprised that we got that many, and now we’re getting kids from Ohio and places like Titusville, Oil City and Mercer County,” Willow said. “Last week, Jared Bish from Clarion won at Riverside Golf Course. What’s nice is that the kids also get a lunch, and there we give away plaques for the division winners along with 18 holes of golf at courses they might not get a chance to play on.”

The first tournament at Downing Golf Course had 76 entrants, with the EDGA Junior Stroke play, counting double points (two rounds), had 62 golfers compete at Elk Valley Golf Course. Riverside drew 71 players.

Points based on finish are awarded throughout the tour. There are six tournaments, plus the EDGA Stroke and Match Play tournaments, until the championship finals at Green Meadows Golf Course on Aug. 5.

– bob jarzomski

Posted in: EDGA, Juniors
Posted: June 27th, 2014

Jim Walker, a longtime softball umpire who keeps himself in excellent shape, shot better than his age for the second time in 2 years at Crab Apple Ridge Golf Course in Waterford.

Walker, 76, who was a standout softball pitcher in the 60s and 70s and still umpires A.S.A. and PIAA games, shot 75 at the par-72 course on Tuesday (June 24).

“I have to like this place, because I did it again,” Walker said.

In 2012, he shot his age or better for the first time when at 74, he carded a 72 at Crab Apple, a course on Route 19 that opened in the mid 1990s and is  owned by Louis ‘Rusty’ Tracy III.


– Bob Jarzomski

Posted in: Uncategorized