Burger misses cut at Orchard Creek, says accuracy was the problem

The Enterprise — Jordan J. Michael

Full swing ahead: Guilderland sophomore Will Burger tees off with his driver on the ninth hole on Tuesday during the first round of the Section 2 golf tournament at Orchard Creek Golf Club in Altamont. Burger’s tee shot went wide right, but he got his second shot within five feet of the cup. Burger shot an 85 (+14) and missed the cut by three strokes to proceed to the next round.

The Enterprise — Jordan J. Michael

Lining up his birdie putt attempt at Orchard Creek Golf Club’s ninth hole on Tuesday is Guilderland’s Will Burger; he missed the five-foot putt. Burger was one of 41 golfers trying to make the second round of the Section 2 tournament, but he missed the cut after shooting an 85. Saratoga’s Chris Thompson had the low round of 73.

The Enterprise — Jordan J. Michael

Will Burger waits to tee off on the eighth hole at Orchard Creek Golf Club on Tuesday during the Section 2 tournament; he’s a sophomore at Guilderland. Burger played alongside Shenendehowa’s Tommy McPartlon, left, and LaSalle’s Tom Degen. Burger and Degen both missed the cut for the second round, and McPartlon advanced with a 79.

The Enterprise — Jordan J. Michael

Chipping from below the green on the 14th hole on Tuesday is Guilderland’s Will Burger, the only Dutch golfer to make the Section 2 tournament at Orchard Creek Golf Club in Altamont. The ball rolled 20 feet past the pin, but Burger made par.

The Enterprise — Jordan J. Michael

Sight seeing: LaSalle’s Tom Degen, left, and Guilderland’s Will Burger use binoculars to check the yardage on the eighth hole on Tuesday at Orchard Creek Golf Club. Burger (85) and Degen (83) both missed the cut, which was 82, to advance to the second round of the Section 2 tournament.

ALTAMONT — Guilderland’s only golfer in the Section 2 tournament, Will Burger, missed the cut for the second round by three strokes on Tuesday, but he wasn’t mad about it.

Hitting the ball with enough distance wasn’t the problem for Burger, but accuracy was a different story. He shot an 85, which is 14 over par for the Orchard Creek Golf Club course in Altamont.

“I don’t get mad after a bad round because it’s done, it’s over, and there’s nothing you can do,” said Burger, a sophomore, after playing 18 holes. “Bad days happen.”

With the wind a factor on Tuesday, Burger said that the breeze pulled his drive on the 16th hole way right; the ball landed in shaggy rough. He went on to three-putt from 12 feet on the green for a double bogey, which he said was “embarrassing.” A bogey is a score of one stroke over par on a hole.

On the 15th hole, the wind was steadily blowing towards the tee, Burger said, which forced him to switch clubs. He said that wind is “everything” in golf.

“My confidence was shaky today,” Burger said. “It was a rough day.”

Burger started his round with pars on both the 17th and 18th holes, but then he started making bogeys and double bogeys. He shot a 45 on the front nine holes, which was nine over par for the course.

“I had a decent finish, but a bad start,” said Burger, who has lowered his nine-hole average every season since making Guilderland’s varsity team in eighth grade. “I played a practice round here on Sunday and it turned out the same.”

Hitting a six-iron off the tee on the par three 17th hole, Burger landed his ball in the front bunker, but was able to get his bunker shot within three-feet of the cup to save par. On the par-five third hole, he made a 20-foot putt for bogey after crushing his drive.

Burger told The Enterprise that he enjoys gold because it’s relaxing. “It’s straight up fun,” he said. What he doesn’t like is the inconsistency, which he tries to refute by playing as many rounds as his time allows.

Golfers usually take more than one practice swing, but Burger barely took any at Orchard Creek on Tuesday. He says that some golfers can focus too much.

“If you keep thinking about a shot, you’ll keep adjusting,” Burger said. “I just step up straight and hit the ball. Pick your original instinct and hope for the best.”

As a team, Guilderland finished 11-5 in the Suburban Council this season.

Here are the players who made the cut for the second round of the Section 2 tournament, which will be played today at Orchard Creek Golf Club. The top nine players make the state team.

— Chris Thompson, 73, Saratoga;

— Andrew Losey, 75, Saratoga;

— James Phelps, 75, Amsterdam;

— Jordon Fordyce, 76, Northville;

— Bobby Canniff, 77, Shaker;

— Dan Shephed, 78, Saratoga;

— Kyle Adams, 79, CBA;

— Tommy McPartlon, 79, Shenendahowa;

— Connor McCarthy, 79, Cobleskill–Richmondville;

— Tanner Donovan, 80, Shaker;

— Mike Dwyer, 80, Scotia-Glenville;

— Sean Puleo, 81, Albany Academy;

— Carter Fritch, 81, Schuylerville;

— Jack O’Hara, 81, CBA;

— Alex Bond, 81, Broadalbin-Perth;

— Madison Braman, 82, Shaker;
— Colin Gaunt, 82, Queensburry;

— Scott Vandenburgh, 82, Ichabod Crane;

— Peyton Joyner, 82, Greenwich; and

— Tyler Lyons, 82, Albany Academy.


Senior Dennis Ziamadanis shot an 18-hole round of 88 and junior Trevor McHugh shot a 111 for Voorheesville at Class C-D sectionals on Oct. 7 at Ballston Spa Country Club. Both players did not advance to state qualifiers.

Head Coach Tom Gladd said that Ziamadanis and McHugh were well above their scoring averages. The cut was 86, Gladd said, which was unusually high; the normal is 81 or 82.

“It was a tough day,” said Gladd. “The course was tough — windy, difficult pin positions, and the greens were fast.”

Ziamadanis was disappointed to not move on, but he handled it well, Gladd said. “I feel bad for him; it was two strokes,” he added. “He got a double bogey on the par four 18th hole [his 15th hole of the round] even though it was pretty straight. He told me that he made a mess out of the hole.”

Gladd went on, saying, “Golf can creep up and get you when you least expect it.”

Voorheesville’s varsity golf team had a superior performance at the Colonial Council Championships this season. The team placed second out of eight teams; Albany Academy, Cobleskill, Fonda, Ichabod Crane, Ravena, Schalmont, and Waterford. 

 After a solid round of 18 holes, junior Tommy Gallager was included on the Colonial Council All-star team by placing 10th. Gallager shot an 83 and took home a nice medal. Ziamadanis  shot an 84. 

Voorheesville almost sent a full team of four players to Class C-D sectionals. Senior Kristian Singh shot an 86, sophomore Willie Gallager shot a 90, McHugh had a 96, and eighth-grader Dylan Roussin shot a 104. After the Colonial Council Championships, McHugh secured his fifth qualifying score to join Ziamadanis at sectionals. The Gallager brothers came up short with four each, needing one more to make it.

“We were young this year,” Gladd concluded. “That said, we won seven matches. All in all, I'm pleased.”


The BKW golf team had no players at the Oct. 7 Class C-D sectionals in Ballston Spa.

“It was a rough season,” Head Coach Don Dennis said. “We’ve been graduating seniors the last three years — 12 to 14 players. The young kids coming up didn’t have much varsity experience.”

With the other Western Athletic Conference teams getting stronger, the Bulldogs went from a 13-3 finish in 2013 to a 3-13 record in 2014. BKW had won seven out of the last 12 WAC championships leading up to this season.

“We were getting kind of spoiled,” Dennis said. “Even though we had kind of a bummer year, it was fun to watch every kid improve.”

The Bulldogs had 10 varsity players — Nicole Sherwin, Danny Grippin, Edwin Lawson, Axton Pulliam, Devon Longendyke, Matt and Ryan Stansfield, Ben Boone, Sean Motschmann, and Thomas McSweeney — that were all able to start a match this season. Dennis said that in year’s past, not every player was able to get a competitive round.

Grippin, a junior, was BKW’s top player. Sherwin, a senior, who didn’t join the team until this season, wished she had started playing golf in seventh grade, Dennis said.

“Everyone improved,” said Dennis. “It was enjoyable.” 

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