Norwin wins annual WCCA golf tournament
The Norwin boys golf team battled through scattered rain showers and difficult playing conditions to claim the Westmoreland County Coaches Association Golf Championship on Friday at Latrobe Elks Golf Course.
Aided by two Top-10 individual finishers with Seth Repicky (79) and Nick Nguyen (80) coming in fourth and sixth place, respectively, the Knights overall score of 411 was just enough to edge runner-up Latrobe by one stroke.
“Everybody played well,” Norwin first-year coach Neil Rushnock said. “We played here on Tuesday, and not everybody played that well on Tuesday so we were a little hesitant coming here and getting our hopes up, but everybody played well so they pulled through.”
While Norwin won the overall team title for the second time in three years, Franklin Regional junior Eddie Zhang won the individual WCCA championship with a score of 4-over par 76.
While admitting he didn't play the perfect round, Zhang's putting made the difference for him in a round where he made four birdies.
“I actually didn't hit many fairways. I missed a lot of fairways,” he said. “My iron game was pretty good. I recovered a lot whenever I was in sticky situations, if I was under a tree or what not. But the thing that really saved me (Friday) was my putting, I made the putts that count.”
Zhang's putting display came on greens that, despite the heavy rain from the previous day and light passing showers throughout the round, played exceptionally fast.
“The greens were rather fast, a lot of plugging going on. … Other than that it was pretty good,” Rushnock said. “The greens were like lightning but didn't get much roll on the fairways.”
Franklin Regional's Aaron Fallat finished just behind his teammate in second place with an individual score of 78. Kiski School claimed the Class AA team title with a mark of 439. Franklin Regional finished in third place overall, while the Cougars came in seventh.
The impressive performances from Zhang, Fallatt and the golfers from Norwin could not have come at a better time, as it gives them momentum entering the WPIAL individual section qualifiers next week.
Alex Oltmanns is a freelance writer.
Westmoreland County Coaches Association tournament
At Latrobe Elks
1. Eddie Zhang, Franklin Regional, 76; 2. Aaron Fallat, Franklin Regional, 78; 3. Nick Finoli, Greensburg Central Catholic, 78; 4. Seth Repicky, Norwin, 79; T5. Tommy Kisick, Latrobe, 80; T5. Nick Nguyen, Norwin, 80; T5. Javon Trout, Hempfield, 80; T8. Antonio Ferrari, Greensburg Salem, 81; T8. Olivia Zambruno, Greensburg Central Catholic, 81; T8. Bryce McNeally, Latrobe, 81; T11. Adam Martin, Latrobe, 82; T11. Anna Wears, Latrobe, 82; T11. Tyler Paunovich, Kiski Area, 82; T11. Kevin Zablesky, Norwin, 82; T11. Justin Guzik, Penn-Trafford, 82
1. Norwin, 411; 2. Latrobe, 412; 3. Franklin Regional, 422; 4. Hempfield, 428; T5. Greensburg Salem, 435; T5. Penn-Trafford, 435; 7. Kiski School, 439;* 8. Derry, 457; 9. Kiski Area, 468; 10. Mt. Pleasant, 472; 11. Greensburg Central Catholic, 484; 12. Burrell, 509; 13. Ligonier Valley, 510; 14. Valley, 577
*Denotes Class AA winner