Sewickley Academy, Quaker Valley boys golf teams among WPIAL contenders
By Nathan Smith
Published: Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
When the Class AA boys golf programs take to the course to compete for the WPIAL team title in 2013, don't be surprised if the representatives from Section 9 are Quaker Valley and Sewickley Academy again.
Both team return plenty of talent to compete as a group and have golfers looking for individual glory.
The Panthers enter the season as one of the top squad's in Class AA looking to challenge defending WPIAL champion Burgettstown. Sewickley Academy finished four strokes behind the Blue Devils last season to take silver for the second straight season.
“Golf is one of the few sports in which you cannot defend,” coach Win Palmer said. “We throughout the year had the lowest team average and we played really well in the semifinals. We got to Cedarbrook and didn't play as well as Burgettstown.
“We are very excited, and we have set individual goals in addition to wanting to compete for a WPIAL and state title.”
Senior Keenan Hickton will lead Sewickley Academy after a strong season in 2012. He finished sixth at the WPIAL Class AA championships as he shot 10-over par at the 18-hole Heritage Hills Golf Resort and Conference Center in York.
Hickton won the Oakmont Junior Club Championship and was the only high school player to qualify for the West Penn Amateur Golf Championship this summer.
“He was the team captain as a junior and should have a solid season,” coach Win Palmer said.
He will be joined by three returning starters — juniors Anthony Muscato and Chris Johnson and sophomore Scott Brown. Seniors Sam Duerr, Neal Houston and Bobby Hapanowicz all were alternatives last season and are looking for a larger role this year. Junior Max Hammel had the junior varsity low average (43.1) last season.
Freshman Jason Li, Sam Sauter and Declan Hickton are also looking to make the varsity roster.
The team held tryouts at Stonewall Resort in central West Virginia and will use two tournaments this week to finalize the roster. The Chairman's Cup was held Monday at Cedarbrook Golf Course and the Ponderosa Shootout will be held Thursday at Ponderosa Golf Course.
“If the players had their way, we would be playing an 18-hole tournament every day,” Palmer said. “We have a nice mix of players from each grade that are highly committed.”
Quaker Valley, meanwhile, will need to contend with the graduation of three varsity golfers but have plenty of talent to fill the void. There will be extra motivation for the Quakers to find success as the WPIAL Class AA individual finals will be held at Sewickley Heights, the team's home course.
Junior Alex Tanabe will be the squad's No. 1 player for a second straight season. He served as the team's No. 6 player as a freshman before taking the top spot a year ago.
“He was the No. 6 player as a freshman when all five starters were seniors,” coach Matt Welch said. “I treated him as a senior last year. This year, it will be like having another coach.”
Alex's younger brother Chris, a freshman, will be looking for a spot on the varsity team. Senior Zach Mancuso will likely be the team's No. 2 player and is a second-year starter.
The Quakers return to the course at 3 p.m. Monday to face Rochester at Rolling Acres.
Nathan Smith is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at email@example.com or via Twitter @NSmith_Trib.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Penguins’ Bylsma wants Cup version of Letang
- Rossi: Pens sticking to power-play plan
- Knife incident on bus gives Connellsville Area School District pause
- Mt. Pleasant’s Donitzen’s high jump prowess could be college ticket
- Dems in Pa. governor’s race vow to close loophole, say firms skirt corporate tax
- Oakmont father-son team’s efforts help add Mon Valley names to police memorial
- Orpik: Penguins must keep their cool
- New Haven Hose Company awarded $25,000
- Curfew concerns presented to Connellsville mayor
- New Haven Hose Company awarded $25,000
- Holtgraver holds on to win Lernerville opener