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McGinty sinks a second place finish at States
BRUCE MORGAN Review Staff
, Staff Writer
Lititz might have a young Tiger Woods in the making.
Joey McGinty, a 6-year-old soon-to-be first-grader at Kissel Hill Elementary School, fired a two-day score of 85 for 18 holes at Penn State University’s Blue Course on Tuesday and Wednesday, July 16-17.
That was good enough for a runner-up finish in the boys 6-&-under division at the U.S. Kids Golf State Championships, placing just five strokes behind York’s Dallas Inch (39-41), who took first place with an 80.
"He was really excited," Joey’s mother April, a 1996 Ephrata grad, said. "A lot of the kids (competing there) belong to country clubs or have coaches and that kind of stuff, so he was thrilled to be able to finish second in that."
Playing on a 1,200-yard course, McGinty shot a 5-over 41 for nine holes on the first day of competition, including two birdies and three pars.
"That was a really good round of golf for him," April said.
Entering the second day just two strokes behind Inch for the lead, McGinty finished up with a solid 44. His final score of 85 was six strokes better than third-place finisher Nicholas Gross (48-43), of Downingtown.
McGinty’s runner-up finish at State College is just his latest accomplishment. He also competed in the U.S. Kids Golf Philadelphia Spring Tour in April and May and captured top honors in the boys 6-&-Under division.
He was first at Gilbertsville Golf Club on April 7 with a round of 47, then placed second at Twin Ponds Golf Course with a 56 on April 14 and runner-up at Chesapeake Bay on May 4 with a round of 50. At the tour championship on May 19 at Philmont Country Club, he took first place with 55 and clinched the points victory (130 points).
"(Joey)’s pretty much good all-around at it," April said. "His best shot is his chipping – he’s an excellent chipper. My husband (B.J.) put a golf hole in our front yard, so he practices chipping all the time."
B.J., in addition to April’s parents, Bruce and Vicky Rettew, of Ephrata, all play golf, which is probably how Joey got started in the sport. Playing since age 4, he has proven to be a natural at the game.
"He just really enjoys it," April said. "It’s like his favorite thing to do."