Golf Struggles Out of Gate, Places 11th at Columbia


It was a tough first outing for the Rams. (Courtesy of Fordham Athletics)

The Fordham golf team started  their spring season on Monday with a disappointing 11th place finish out of 12 teams at the Columbia Spring Invite. The teams played at Rolling Green Golf Club in Springfield, Pennsylvania, a par 70 course.

Junior P.J. O’Rourke led the way for the Rams with his first top-10 finish, at +4, which was good enough for T-10. Junior John Kryscio continued his struggles from the fall with a T-74 finish, shooting +22 in the 36-hole event. Freshman Jake Mrva also shot +22 just behind fellow freshman Garrett Brown’s +18. The second-place finisher on the Fordham team was junior captain Nicholas Manning, who finished T-24 with a score of +9. He improved his first 18-hole score of 75 by one shot in the second round. Overall, this is a disappointing start on an individual level for the Rams, as they were hoping for a better start from Kryscio and Mrva coming into the spring season. 

Kryscio’s day came to a frustrating end with an eight-over 42 on the back nine. He doubled 10, made four straight bogeys starting at 12 and made a triple on the par-5 17th. An even par back nine would have brought him into the top 10, but the tough back nine at Rolling Green knocked him down to the T-74 finish.

Justin Burkhamer of Iona College was the only player to finish under par, winning the event by two strokes at -1. An even par first round and a one-under second round propelled him to victory. Jeffery Cunningham of Drexel University and Kazuki Osawa from Lafayette College got things started off well with matching 69s in round one, but both struggled in round two. Nathan Han of Columbia University and Edmund Broderick of Lehigh University tied for the best rounds of the day with second-round 66s. 

Drexel came away the wire-to-wire winner after a +24 combined score, 10 shots better than Lafayette. They started off four shots ahead of Lafayette and bettered their score in the second round to lock down the victory. The host, Columbia, came in third at +35, Iona finished sixth and Fordham 11th. 

The Rams finished behind the only Atlantic 10 competition at the event, five shots behind the St. Joseph’s University Hawks. The difference for the Hawks was J.T Spina who fired a two-under 68 in the second round to push them up the leaderboard. He shot a four-under on the back nine in round two with a hole-out eagle on the par-4 11th. 

Lafayette hosts next week’s event, the Abarta Coca-Cola Collegiate Invitational in Hellertown, Pennsylvania. The Rams will look to dramatically improve their standing this week as they look down the chute at a very short spring schedule. They only have two events left before the A-10 Championship at the end of April, and need to improve their play to finish in better standing than last year.