Golf Notebook: Kania In Philadelphia Amateur Finals

June 19, 2009

ELVERSON, Pa. -- Junior Kentucky golfer James Kania advanced through four rounds of match play competition Tuesday and Wednesday to advance to the 36-hole championship round of the 109th Philadelphia Amateur Championship Saturday at 8 a.m. ET at Stonewall.
 
Kania, seeded 11th overall in the tournament, never trailed a hole through the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds. The native of Haverford, Pa., started the tournament on Tuesday by defeating No. 22 Thomas Bartolacci, Jr. 5-and-4 in the round of 36 and No. 6 Justin Martinson 2-and-1 in the round of 16. In the quarterfinals on Wednesday, Kania defeated No. 30 Jeffery Griest 3-and-2 to advance to the semifinals where the junior beat No. 10 Anthony Martire 3-and-2 to advance to the finals.
 
“My game has been feeling good since early May when I played in the US Open Qualifier and NCAAs,” said Kania, who is currently the leading point holder in the Golf Association of Philadelphia 2009 Amateur Player of the Year race. “I'm just going to try and continue to take it one shot at a time. If I play like I am capable, it should be an exciting match. Conrad has had a great career at UVA and he is a great friend, so it will be a fun day no matter what.”
 
Kania will play No. 28 Conrod Von Borsig, who recently graduated from the University of Virginia, in the 36-hole championship Saturday. Von Borsig played in 22 rounds for the Cavaliers in 2008-2009 posting an average score of 73.95 and a season low mark of 68 at the Hootie at Bulls Bay Tournament. Like Kania, Von Borsig is in search for his first amateur crown of his career. The Virginia grad defeated Michael McDermott, the defending champion of the tournament, to advance to the championship round.
 
Kania played in 29 rounds as a sophomore for the Wildcats during the 2008-2009 season posting a season stroke average of 74.65. The junior had a season low round of 69 at the Schenkel E-Z Go Invitational. Kania gathered three top-15 finishes on the year including placing sixth at the Jacksonville University Invitational. The former Golf Association of Philadelphia Junior Player of the Year in 2004, he played some of his best golf late in the season finishing in the top-30 in two of his last three tournaments including placing tied for 27th at the NCAA Regional.
 
Volpenhein Advances to Championship
Alex Volpenhein, who will be a UK senior in 2009-2010, used a final round score of 69, the second lowest round of the day, to claim the U.S. Amateur Public Links Qualifier title in Cincinnati on Wednesday and qualify for the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship held in Norman, Okla., on July 13-18. 
 
Volpenhein posted a final score of 141 for the tournament, shooting a 72 in the opening round after his impressive mark of 69 on the final 18 holes. The senior from Edgewood, Ky., finished one stroke better than Danny Lewis who shot a 68 on the final day, the only round of the day that was lower than Volpenhein’s.
 
Only the top two finishers of the qualifier are chosen to advance to the championship rounds of the tournament held at the home of the University of Oklahoma in Norman, Okla., starting on July 13. The tournament is one of 10 national championships that are conducted by the United States Golf Association solely for amateurs.  
 
Volpenhein played in 12 rounds for Kentucky during the 2008-2009 season posting a season stroke average of 80.91. His best tournament of the season came at the UK Bluegrass Invitational, where the senior finished in a tie for 33rd and posted a season low round of 75.