Rhody Golfers Off To A Hot Start This Summer

Photo Credit: Julie Fletcher
Photo Credit: Julie Fletcher

KINGSTON, R.I. – Several members of the Rhode Island golf team have excelled in summer play, competing in tournaments all over the country. 

Leading the way is All-Conference and All-East honoree Dawson Jones (Howell, N.J.), who won the New Jersey Amateur in dramatic fashion. He used a final-round 65 to overcome a seven-shot deficit heading into the fourth and final round. His rounds of 69-70-70-65 (-14) not only made him the individual medalist but shattered the all-time scoring record. 

The day prior to the N.J. Am, Jones finished fourth among all amateurs in the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifier, with rounds of 68-71, for a five-under-par finish. He followed his N.J. Am title with a 15th-place finish in the Met Stroke Play Championship.

"We are off to a terrific start to the summer," head coach Gregg Burke said. "Obviously Dawson has accomplished something very special by winning the New Jersey Am and setting the all-time scoring record. He is on the path to be one of the very best to ever play here at URI."

Brody King (Tulsa, Okla.) had a superb performance in the Oklahoma Stroke Play Championship, finishing sixth after rounds of 71-67-73 (-2) in a field that featured a number of top collegians. 

"I'm particularly pleased with Brody's accomplishment in the Oklahoma Stroke Play," Burke noted. "We've been waiting for him to have a break-out tournament and we're hoping this was it."

Jason Short (Marlborough, Mass.) placed 31st in the Massachusetts Open and was medalist at the New England Amateur Qualifier with a round of 67. He will be joined by Rhody alumni Billy Walthouse, Brad Valois, Billy Forcier and Eric Marchetti, all exempt from qualifying.   

Burke Barsamian (Barrington Hills, Ill.) shot an even par to finish second overall at the Wisconsin Amateur Qualifier.

Incoming freshman Bobby Weise (Freehold, N.J.) started his spring and summer play by winning the Shore Conference Championship - something that Jones also did three years ago as a high school senior. Weise followed with a sixth-place finish in the Liberty National Invitational, the top United States Challenge Cup field every year. After qualifying for the New Jersey Amateur, he recorded a stellar 23rd-place finish (74-74-71-72), which landed him fourth among all high school competitors. He also qualified for the Met Stroke play, made the cut and finished 31st among the field of 128 golfers. 

Chris Francoeur (Amesbury, Mass.), also an incoming freshman, finished fourth in the Massachusetts Amateur Qualifier before placing second in the New England Interscholastic Championship the next day, at three-under par.

"We will have just seven players on the team next year, and only Dawson has played in more than eight events," Burke added. "Jason looks to be rounding into top form and should be in the lineup all year. After that, there is open competition but the two incoming freshmen have certainly proven they can play immediately. This is just the start to the summer season so the next five or six weeks will tell us a lot."