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Three-peat for Derek Bard;
three other locals make
state tournament
Section III Tournament - 2012 - Final Round
Junior rolls to win;
Jakubowicz, Kalil
and Alec Bard also
qualify for states
               May 26

HAMILTON - Derek Bard was the
heavy favorite to win the Section III
title.

The New Hartford junior didn't
disappoint, winning his third straight
sectional title after carding a 71 to
post a 142 total and an eight-stroke
victory.

Bard is thought to be the only player
to ever win three sectional titles
outright.

Cicero-North Syracuse's Dan
Wilkinson won three straight in the
mid 1980s - twice outright and once
as a co-champion.

"To win this tournament any year is
a great feeling," Bard said. "And
knowing I was able to do it the last
three years, is very, very pleasing."

West Genesee's John Clare shot his
second straight 75 to finish second
with a 150 total.

Notre Dame's Mike Kalil was third
after a 5-over 77 Saturday and a
155 total.

Two other Tri Valley League
competitors - New Hartford's Alec
Bard (161 total) and Whitesboro's
Joel Jakubowicz (162 total) - will also
compete at the state tournament,
June 3-4 at Cornell University's
Robert Trent Jones Golf Course.

Jakubowicz had to go extra holes to
earn his first state berth. The junior
had to compete against
Frankfort-Schuyler freshman, Dante
Migliore and Westhill's Ryan Conroy
for the final two spots.

On the first hole, Jakubowicz made a
tough up-and-down from the rough -
just outside the green-side bunker
to make par to advance with Conroy,
who also made par.

Migliore hit a great tee shot and a
nice approach that stopped in the
back fringe approximately 20-25 feet
from the pin. His first putt up the hill
stopped five feet short and his par
putt burned the edge.

He was eliminated when Jakubowicz
knocked in a 3 1/2-footer for par.

"I wasn't really nervous until the
putt," Jakubowicz said. "I was going
to hit it hard enough that if it didn't
go in it was going to go a ways past."

Also finishing in the top nine and
representing Section III at states are:
CBA's Aiden Fuller (160) and Jack
Bellardini (160), South Jefferson's
Ryan Clark (161) and Westhill's
Conroy (162).

New Hartford's Patrick Coughlin
(165), Ilion's Dan North (168) and
New Hartford's Alex Malta (169) were
the other locals making it to the
second day but missing the cut for
states.

Derek Bard entered the day with just
a one-stroke advantage over
Bellardini, and a four-shot lead over
Clare.

Bard quickly ended any doubt about
who was in charge as he made
birdie 3s on the 1st and 3rd holes,
while both Bellardini and Clare got
off to rough starts. Bard really never
again was threatened, as he just
had to keep the ball in front and
avoid making big numbers.

Saturday's scenario was much
different than what Bard faced in
2011, when Skaneateles bulldog
Eric Edmunds was in striking
distance until late in the round.

"It was a little easier than last year,"
Bard said. "I got off to a quick start
and both Clare and Bellardini
struggled early and that gave me
some breathing room. So, I just tried
to play solid and coast in."

Kalil and Jakubowicz, both juniors,
have been really close and are
really excited to experience states
for the first time.

"It means everything," Kalil said. " I
put a lot of work into making a swing
change this winter and it has really
paid off."

Kalil was extremely steady both days
and could be a factor if his form
continues next weekend.

"I putted really well both days," said
Kalil "My ball striking was great
today .. I only missed three greens
all day."

Jakubowicz also has been working
toward this day for a while.

"Making to states was my goal since
I chose to play golf instead of
baseball in ninth grade," Jakubowicz
said.

"It's exciting."

Alec Bard will be making his second
state appearance, which is a
tremendous accomplishment,
considering he is merely an eighth
grader.

Alec finished a remarkable ninth at
states last year, and fought hard
both rounds this week to earn a trip
back to Cornell.

"It's a good thing and a bad thing,"
said Alec Bard of making it last year.

"It's more pressure because now I'm
supposed to make it, but now I know
what to expect (playing sectionals
and states)."

Derek Bard finished fourth at states
last year, and will head back for his
fourth attempt at the title.

Even if Pittsford-Mendon's Gavin
Hall was playing, Bard would be
considered one of the favorites to
win in Cornell.

"My goal is to win," Bard said.
"That's how I approach every
tournament."

If he is to win, he knows one phase
of his game will have to improve.

"I missed a lot of birdie putts today,"
said Bard," who laughed and said 'I
try not to think about it' when asked
what he could of shot today if he
putted well.

"I'm very happy with the way I'm
hitting the ball," Bard said. "I'm
hoping my putting gets hot heading
to states."

Section III Tournament
at Seven Oaks GC, Par 72
Final Round
Qualifiers for State Tournament:
1. Derek Bard (New Hartford)
71-71-142; 2. John Clare (West
Genesee) 75-75-150; 3. Mike Kalil
(Notre Dame) 78-77 155; 4. Jack
Bellardini (CBA) 72-88 160; 4. Aiden
Fuller 77-83 160; 6. Ryan Clark
(South Jefferson) 77-84 161; 6. Alec
Bard (New Hartford) 80-81 161; 8.
Joel Jakubowicz 80-82 162; 8. Ryan
Conroy (Westhill) 80-82 162.
Other Scores: 8. Dante Migliore
(Frankfort) 81-81 162 (lost on first
playoff hole); 11. Patrick Coughlin
(New Hartford) 79-86 165; 12. Mike
McIntosh (Chittenango) 81-85 166;
13. Alec Mosher (Marcellus) 81-86
167; 14. Joe Petrin (C-NS) 79-89
168; 14. Dan North (Ilion) 80-88
168; 16. Andy Leary (Port Byron)
82-87 169; 16. Alex Malta (New
Hartford) 82-87 169; 18. Dan O'Hara
(Port Byron) 82-88-170; 19. Matt
Preston (CBA) 82-89 171; 20. Erik
Davis (J-D) 79-WD.

PHOTO GALLERY
New Hartford junior Derek Bard hits a wedge to the par-5 18th hole during
the final round of the Section III Tournament at Seven Oaks Golf Course in
Hamilton. Bard made birdie to finish with a two-day total of 2-under 142 and
his third straight sectional title.
Whitesboro's Joel Jakubowicz chips to the 1st green during the first hole of
a 3-man playoff to determine the final two spots on Section III's state team.
Jakubowicz was able to make par to advance.
Notre Dame's Mike Kalil hits a tee shot off the par-4 13th hole. Kalil shot
77 Saturday to finish third overall with a 155 total.
New Hartford's Alec Bard tees off on the par-5 7th hole. He finished with an
81 Saturday and a two-day total of 161 for his second straight berth in the
state tournament.