Roughs Annual Golf Classic is a 2-day, 4-round championship golf tournament hosted at Roughs Golf Club in Horsham, PA. It will be the 8th installment of this summer classic, and the largest ever field at 17 golfers. From 4-year college golfers to relative newcomers, from Roughs first-timers to 8-year vets, the tournament welcomes all for a weekend of incredible golf. This year, the event will be flighted for the first time. Six golfers will comprise the Championship Flight, five golfers will compete in the Tournament Flight, and, as a shout out to the return of original Roughs veteran Seamus Morgan, the five remaining golfers will compete in the Sportsmanship Flight. Check out the player profiles below, and tune in at 2:30pm Sunday afternoon to the live broadcast of the final group. http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bob-long-sports
This man has been terrorizing fellow golfers from the Colonial Athletic Association, the NCAA, the Amateur ranks, and of course, fellow Roughs competitors. A 6-time champion, only once has Martin surrendered the title (in 2010 to Greg Goodreds). Kyle brings it all, from the day 1 experience of helping to design and construct Roughs in 2005, to the D-1 experience of leading the Blue Hens of Delaware for four years. He can hit any shot on the golf course and has a knack for hitting timely putts, and just last year posted two 56s on Sunday to run away with the title (those were back-to-back course record performances as well). He will be no doubt the man to beat once again. NOTE: The tournament director may or may not have considered adding a fourth flight, the “Kyle” flight, but upon further thought decided against it.
This guy can bomb on the golf course. Not that it matters all that much at Roughs, where 56 yards is the longest hole on the course. However, his shot-making ability is second to only Martin on this course, and we saw this down the stretch last year, as he posted a 60 in round 4, and posted red numbers all four rounds. Last year took him just a bit too long to get going and that probably cost him a chance to compete on Sunday, but expect McGinnis to be ready Saturday this year to put up a number. McGinnis tees off at 7am on Saturday looking to set the pace, and then will play with Martin at 12:30 on Saturday for his second round. This will be a great matchup to watch this weekend.
Bob Long was the last player to have a lead over Martin at Roughs after an equivalent number of holes played, and as you may have guessed from last year’s wire-to-wire finish from Martin, that lead was not during the 2016 tournament. Long had a two stroke lead on Kyle with 10 holes play in the 2015 final round, but a surge from Kyle and an OB tee shot on 11 from Long was the difference that year. Bob brings a unique angle to the golf tournament, as he does not use a putter on Roughs greens. Instead, he uses almost exclusively a 48 degree wedge. Even when on the green, he will blade the ball with this wedge as his form of putting. This method has propelled him to two consecutive second place finishes, and this will undoubtedly be a key in his ability to return to the final grouping in 2017.
Fresh off a college baseball career which prevented him from attending in 2015, Kevin was back meaning business in 2016, shooting -36 for the tournament, good for third place. Long was the 2013 runner up, suffering the same fate Bob Long would suffer a year later, the tee shot on 11 on Sunday afternoon that crept out of bounds and gave Kyle the advantage the rest of the way. Kevin has a very solid golf game and has been striking the ball as well as he ever has recently, including a 79 at the Links at Lighthouse Sound in Ocean City MD just three weeks ago. Expect Kevin to put himself in position to challenge on Sunday, and for the putter to be the key.
Tim Anderson and Kyle Martin have a rapport that stems from growing up and playing lots of golf with and against one another. A golf standout at Hatboro-Horsham High School and Penn State Abington, Anderson enters tournament play with a great sense of what tournament pressure feels like and how to handle it. His experience at many of the great golf courses that lay in the surrounding towns will prepare him for Roughs. But Anderson is a first-timer at the Roughs Annual Golf Classic. He grew up in the same town in which Roughs is located, but this sleepy gem has somehow escaped him for 20+ years. Don’t sleep on Anderson, however, because he has the game to just show up and post low numbers.
One of Manny’s Finest joins Roughs for the first time. Zach Bullock is a member of Manufacturers’ Golf and Country Club and finds himself in the Championship Flight in his first Roughs appearance. Talk about a great couple of weeks for Bullock. Two weekends ago, he traveled to the Monterey Peninsula to play Pebble Beach, and this weekend he will find himself in a battle in the Roughs Annual Golf Classic. Bullock will be pulling double duty this weekend, as he also has a tennis club championship at Manufacturers’, but of course, his focus at Roughs will need to be on golf to put himself in contention. Bullock is a very good scrambler when he needs to be, which will be an advantage of his on this golf course.
Straight up, a grinder. No better way to put it with Tom. He’s a guy that is going to hang around all weekend, isn’t going to beat himself, and should be right there when the cut is made midday on Sunday. Trainer is a player that knows the course well, is a long-time vet of Roughs, and has improved every single time he’s teed it up at Roughs. Last year’s opening round 76 was the lone blemish in Trainer’s tournament, going -12 the rest of the way to finish a respectable sixth in 2016. Trainer will need to hone consistent efforts throughout the weekend to put himself in contention, and should be one of the favorites in the Tournament Flight.
If Trainer is the grinder, then Dan Gallagher is the guy that’s under the radar (although probably not in the Tournament Flight, where Gallagher is a Vegas Dream on the Money Line). Gallagher was +3 through the first round last year, then fired off 66-63-61 to finish the weekend at -17 and 5th place for the championship. Nothing fancy about how Gallagher does it: he takes solid shots, occasionally takes the chance to produce a scoring opportunity, and should keep himself along the cut line all weekend long, with a chance to jump into that top 5 category. Dan is also one of the great ambassadors for Roughs, recruiting 4 additional participants the last 4 tournaments, so don’t be surprised to see a few member’s bounces for Gallagher this weekend.
Few guys have the enthusiasm for Roughs that Baiada has. He has been working on his game and this bomber will look to enhance the aesthetics of the short game this weekend. A joker on the course but a solid player as well, Baiada will be a good player to partner with on the golf course. Baiada will be a guy to look out for near the cut line, and a few shots around the green will be the difference as to whether he will play his 4th round on Sunday.
No one in the field has turned around his/her game in the past two years the way Krouse has. While he struggled in 2015, shooting +18 in his second and final round, Krouse rebounded with a +5 for all four rounds and a 7th place finish last year. Krouse has developed a really nice game this spring. He’s crushing the ball off the tee, plays quite frequently, and has developed a good mid-iron game. His ability to control his mid-iron and wedge at Roughs, to maneuver the tree lined right hand side of the golf course, will be the true test for Mike this weekend. In addition, you feel like Krouse now has his feet wet after qualifying for his fourth and final round last year – will the improved game and the increased familiarity with the golf course play a part in his chase to make the cut?
Our Jackie Robinson. Our Danica Patrick. Our Annika Sorenstam. Ost in 2015 was the first female to enter the field at Roughs, and performed well, struggling to a +14 to start but doubling back with a +5 in Round 2. Last year, she played three rounds and finished at +25, good for 11th in the 15 player field. Ost’s game has been very solid recently, tearing up the links of the Delaware Valley all spring long. I expect a very solid showing in year 3 for Ost. Perhaps THE biggest storyline besides the chase for the trophy will be Ost vs. Krouse. This couple battles it out every time they step to the tee – Krouse was victorious last year, but once again, house swag and bragging rights are on the line at Roughs.
A last minute qualifier for Roughs, Tyler Kern will look to build on the “house money” with which he is playing. Kern is a true wild card, as we do not know much about his game, but he is a great athlete with high school football and collegiate rugby experience. He will play back-to-back rounds on Saturday morning, and a quick start will be a key for him to be able to contend at the top of the Tournament Flight.
Joe DiFurio has spent more time at Roughs Golf Club playing baseball than he has golf. In another life, the Roughs Golf Club doubled as a baseball field, and DiFurio was a star in the backyard baseball league while he was growing up. Now, the barrel is replaced by the clubhead, and DiFurio is ready once again to tear up this property. Fairly new to the game of golf, DiFurio has honed his game on courses such as Ace, Jeffersonville, and Center Square, but Roughs will provide a new test for him this weekend. A big shout out to DiFurio’s father, Curt, who produced the Roughs Golf Club golf shirts this year, they came out beautifully.
This man is a hoot on the golf course. Boyce will be entering the Roughs field for the third time, and each year he has been here he has been a fan and media favorite because of his humor and antics, and he looks to bring that same intensity to Roughs this year. We think the addition of flights is a great thing for Boyce, who has the talent to put himself into position for a Flighted Championship this weekend.
Alex Chrostowski returns to Roughs after a year hiatus. Chrostowski is a world traveler who recently embarked for Thailand to study the many land contours and the golfing history of the Southeast Asian country. This will without a doubt be an advantage for Chrostowski this weekend in the Sportsmanship Flight, and at Roughs, where sweltering temperatures are expected. Chrostowski is a jack-of-all-trades athlete, and focus will be the key for Chrostowski to compete for a Flighted Championship.
The guy exudes more sportsmanship than the world has ever seen. So much so that there is now an award (self-proclaimed, mind you), the Seamus Morgan Sportsmanship Award, as well as the Sportsmanship Flight. Be on your best behavior at Roughs this weekend, as Morgan has eyes like a (St. Joe’s) Hawk, identifying situations where people are exceptionally sportsmanlike, as well as situations where players take themselves out of the race for the second-most coveted piece of hardware for the weekend. On the golf course, this lefty has his own style about him…the patented “step and swing” is an entertaining piece of golf, just don’t stand too close and watch your head. A great disposition on the golf course, Morgan has the sense of humor at all times on the course. Get Morgan and Chrostowski in the same group and you’ll be laughing the whole 18 holes.
Returning to Roughs for the second time, Boswick has been looking forward to this opportunity for months. Boswick has a few tricks up his sleeve this weekend, including the excessive use of the putter. He has been working tirelessly to perfect the art of teeing off with the putter, and will bring that skill set to Roughs on Saturday. Whether it is deemed foolish or brilliant is perhaps yet to be determined, unless you check Boswick’s scores from last year’s tournament, in which case you might be able to make an educated guess.