Pennsbury has to find footing, sans Rogowicz and Ramesh

YARDLEY – Every year, with graduation, players depart the ranks of their given teams sure. It’s not often however that a team loses a couple of nationally-ranked players like Jackie Rogowicz and Vinay Ramesh.

But that’s exactly what has happened at Pennsbury where the Falcons must find a way to replace the void left by the departure of Rogowicz who recently led her Penn State women’s golf team to a win in the Nittany Lion Invitational. Pennsbury must also find a suitable replacement for Ramesh who captured a PIAA-AAA individual championship in 2014 before qualifying for the US Amateur this summer.

“Obviously, you can’t replace players like them,” said senior Alex Simon. “You can just try to improve yourself and add to the team.”

“You can’t replace players like them,” added junior junior Ryan Kim. “All you can do is try your hardest and practice every day and give all of your effort.”

Winners of the Suburban One League National Conference the last two years, the Falcons’ competition for the league crown almost always come from Council Rock North, which won the league the previous three seasons along with a PIAA championship in 2010 and a runner-up trophy in 2012.

While the two teams split in 2013, Pennsbury took both matches from the Indians last season.

On Wednesday, Sept. 17, it was the Rock’s time to shine. Led by seniors Maddie Herr (38) and Lauren Muhlbauer (39), North took the match at Yardley Country Club, 199-208. Senior Rob Scott (40) Logan Fuglestad (41) and junior Connor Welles (41) also chipped in to the win by North, which remained unbeaten at 7-0.

For the Falcons, Simon led his team with a low score 39. Next was Kim, who hit 40. Coming in to card 41 was classmate Justin Friedman. Freshman Pat Laushell (43) and sophomore Matt Babel (45) rounded out the scoring for Pennsbury, now 6-5 overall, 5-3 in the SOL National Conference.

“We have four really solid golfers that are going to finish in the top 88 of the SOL standings,” said Falcons’ first-year head coach Curtis May. “Whether they can move on from there is a great question.”

“It’s just finding that fifth player to fill in…

“I’ve been juggling the lineup lately trying to figure out who’s hot.

Youngsters like Laushell and Babel have stepped up along with freshman Chris Dul and a pair of other 9th-graders.

Dul was Pennsbury’s second-best golfer, carding 38 strokes in a 201-208 triumph over William Tennent Sept. 8 at YCC. Moving to Bucks County from Florida, Chris played football last year as an eighth-grader before deciding to come back out to the links.

“He was our freshman surprise,” said May, of Dul. “He picked up his clubs again and came out for the team and just lit it up.

“He’s the real deal; he’s a very good player. He strikes the ball really well and he has a lot of drive.”

Kim has been one of the team’s most consistent players this season, said May. “He’s been rock solid all year,” the coach said.

Most rounds, the 6-foot-4 Kim scores in the low 40s though he broke 40 in the Truman match and also in the second Bensalem matchup. His season low thus far came in the win over Tennent at YCC where he carded 35 strokes.

“That was incredible,” stated May. “Every time I saw him, he was right down the middle of the fairway.”

“Big strong kid, plays within himself. He’s getting smarter at the game too; he’s a hard worker.”

“Mostly everything is working for me in my game lately,” added Kim. “Except for my putting; I just have to take my time more often because I keep on lipping out.”

Another player stepping up is freshman Griffin Foll, who was co-leader on the team with a 42 along with Simon in a recent duel with Neshaminy, won by the Skins at Middletown CC.

While Foll started the season off with a bang, he’s cooled off of late. And while freshman Jay Grewell just started playing golf, he’s been shooting in the mid-40s, says May.

Up from the JV golf team is junior McKensie Mix, who averages in the mid- to high-40s.

Friedman co-led the team with 38 strokes along with Simon in the first win over Tennent last month at Five Ponds. He hit 42 and 44 in consecutive wins over Bensalem while carding a team low 40 in a loss to Council Rock South Sept. 9 at Spring Mill CC.

Council Rock North 199, Pennsbury 208

(Sept. 17 at Yardley Country Club)


Madelein Herr 38             Alex Simon 39

Lauren Muhlbauer 39     Ryan Kim 40

Rob Scott 40       Justin Friedman 41

Logan Fuglestad 41          Pat Laushell 43

Connor Welles 41             Matt Babel 45

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