Central Valley girls golf showing no signs of slipping from top spot
Larry Milosh wasn't bragging, wasn't being pompous, wasn't exaggerating.
He was being matter-of-fact when saying the Central Valley girls' golf team is that good.
“We will probably be favored to win the WPIAL, which we should do,” said Milosh, coach of the Warriors. “If we get to states, you don't know about your chances. But our goal is to be state champions.”
It is a reasonable goal, as Central Valley has won the WPIAL Division II (now Class AA) title the past two seasons and has the core of its 2011 squad back. Four returnees finished among the top 15 in the WPIAL individual tournament, which included Class AAA players, a year ago. And there is a fabulous freshman who has already ascended to the No. 4 starting position.
Macky Fouse, Jocelyn Sudar, Marissa Sudar and Daniela Battisti finished in the first 15, and are among the elite WPIAL players returning. The field of top returnees also includes Penn-Trafford seniors Mia Barchetti and Haley Borkovich; Seton-La Salle sophomore Joey Walz; and senior Abbie Helbling of Beaver, among others.
Milosh has a keen appreciation for the continuous germination of golf talent in his corner of the Beaver Valley. He is owner and professional at Ironwood Golf Center, a driving range in Center Township. He was a successful girls coach at Center High School before that district merged with Monaca to form Central Valley heading into the 2010-11 school year.
Now he heads a bona fide juggernaut.
“We have seven girls who are pretty good,” Milosh said. “Any given day, any of them can be the medalist.”
Fouse, a junior, is the Warriors' No. 1 player. She tied for 16th at the PIAA individual championships last year. Jocelyn Sudar, a senior, and sister Marissa, a sophomore, are Nos. 2 and 3.
Maddy McDanel is a ninth-grader who is expected to have an impact.
“At this point, she's No. 4, although 4, 5 and 6 are a stroke apart,” Milosh said.
McDanel has spent her summer vacation honing her game. She was the points leader in the 14- to 15-year-old division of the Kings Restaurants Tri-State PGA Junior Golf Tour.
Battisti, a senior, junior Amanda Scala and senior Katelyn Humann are Nos. 5 through 7 “right now,” as Milosh prefers to say.
He has high praise for the work ethic of his team, saying the “girls are playing every day, whether they are in tournaments, playing a round on their own, hitting at the range, or chipping and putting.”
The short history of Central Valley girls' golf is incredible, to be sure, and the immediate future bursts with promise. Milosh, however, anticipates the good times rolling for a long while.
“There is no end in sight,” he said. “We have a junior program and while we have kids coming from a number of schools, it seems like there are always a couple from each class at Central Valley who are there.”