2014 High School Golf Preview

BOYS

ECC Large

East Lyme

Coach: Rudy Bagos (10th year).

Key returnees: Sr. Connor Callaghan, Sr. Zach Kosakowski, Sr. Drew Bradley, Sr. Dinkar Ahuja, Sr. Ross Krasner, Jr. Ryan Tobin.

Top newcomers: Sr. Andrew Lorah, Sr. Patrick Rafferty, Jr. Billy Brigaw, Jr. Mike Fenn, Jr. Jake Rowe, So. Christian Brown.

Outlook: The Vikings, who went 18-1 last year and went 10-0 to win the Large Division, should be strong again this season with everyone returning except Francis Shields. Callaghan, an All-ECC selection, will lead a veteran group that will help East Lyme challenge for division crown.

Fitch

Coach: Glen Graham (10th year).

Key returnees: Sr. Corey Jones, Sr. Trey Hogsten, Sr. Dakota Dickson, Jr. Luke Teixeira.

Top newcomers: Jr. Joaquin Arroyo, So. Kyle Musella.

Outlook: With four varsity golfers returning, the Falcons (8-8 overall, 5-5 ECC Large) will look to be competitive in a very talented Large Division Jones was a first-team all-star in the division.

Ledyard

Coach: Eric Van Frachen (12th year).

Key returnees: Sr. Mike Graff, Sr. Pat Brown, Sr. Evan DelGrosso, Jr. Jack Gabriel.

Top newcomers: Sr. Clayton Lewis, So. Justin Carter, So. Kevin Simmons.

Outlook: This is going to be a rebuilding year, as the Colonels - who who went 13-2 overall and 8-2 in the Medium Division - move up to the Large Division with only one returning starter (Graff). Focus will be on daily improvement and becoming more competitive as the season progresses.

Norwich Free Academy

Coach: Bob McPhail (43rd year).

Key returnees: Sr. Justin Bohara, Sr. Frankie Lee, Sr. Dan Bilda, Sr. Matt Perras, Jr. Brandan Sullivan.

Top newcomers: So. Isaiah Joyner, So. Spencer Molkenthin, Fr. Sean Gilot, Fr. Jack Sullivan.

Outlook: Bohara and Lee, two All-ECC Large Division golfers and team captains, will anchor the Wildcats (12-5 overall, 8-2 Large in 2013). NFA is expected to contend for Large Division title, be in championship contention in the ECC Open and qualify again for Division I state tournament.

ECC Medium

Waterford

Coach: Rik Little (3rd year).

Key returnees: Sr. Mitch Mirabito, Sr. Marcus Krodel, Jr. Matt Shea, Jr. Chris Pedersen.

Outlook: After only eight golfers tried out last year, the Lancers (7-9 overall in 2013) saw a spike in their numbers with 20 golfers. Inexperience will be an issue for Waterford, however, as only two players have at least a full season of varsity golf under their belts.

ECC Small

Wheeler

Coach: Carl Weber (7th season).

Key returnees: Sr. Stephen Rock, Jr. Coleton Lamb, Jr. Max Reck, Jr. Tyler Primett, Jr. Peyton Mulhern, Jr. Justin Terry, Jr. Simon Lindsey, So. Jacob Umphlett.

Top newcomers: Fr. Michael Anderson, Fr. Andrew Carlson, Fr. Matt Worobey, Fr. Morgan Primett, Fr. Ella Secchiaroli.

Outlook: The Lions have a nice mix of upperclassmen and newcomers to compete for spots in the top five and expect to be more competitive this season in the Small Division.

Others

Grasso Tech

Coach: William Paradis (24th year).

Key returnees: Trevor Hutchinson, Justin Van Dyke.

Outlook: Only two starters return from a successful team that went 11-5. The loss of Steve Robarge, a state tournament qualifier, hurts. The Eagles remain dedicated to improving their game and should benefit from an expanded schedule that includes more tournaments.

Norwich Tech

Coach: Thomas Wainwright (14th year).

Key returnees: Sr. Alex Valdes, Sr. Ackens King, Sr. Sheyanne Biltcliffe, Jr. Josh Gilot, Jr. Joe Bacon, Jr. Stephen LaGram, Jr. Alberton Hall, So. Josh Rees.

Top newcomers: Fr. Nick Ferraina.

Outlook: With everyone returning from last year's team, Norwich Tech expects to be competitive this season in the Constitution State Conference. Valdes is the team's leader and top golfer.

Old Lyme

Coach: Kirk Kaczor (8th year).

Key returnees: Jr. Jake Tiffany, Jr. Owen O'Donnell, Jr. Jack Berger.

Top newcomers: So. Drake Gavin, Fr. Graham Aird, Fr. Will Roberts, Fr. Adam Czarnecki, Fr. Quinn Hallahan.

Outlook: The Wildcats lost all five varsity players, including all-stater Matti Fuller, so they will be inexperienced. Tiffany saw action in a few varsity matches last year. Old Lyme's level of success in the always strong Shoreline Conference will depend on the development of its young golfers.

GIRLS

East Lyme

Coach: Rudy Bagos (2nd year).

Key returnees: Sr. Regan Ewald, Sr. Rachel Vandale, Jr. Kyla Henry, Jr. Kyle Ewald, Jr. Ava Williams, So. Maggy Powers.

Top newcomers: Fr. Brianna Lally, Fr. Lisa Griffith.

Outlook: Only a second-year program, the Vikings are still building a foundation. Henry and Powers, the team's top golfers, will help East Lyme be competitive in the ECC.

NFA

Coach: Bob Rothstein (8th year).

Key returnees: Sr. Madeline Bennett, Sr. Anna Estrada, Sr. Sydney Maurer, Sr. Kim Postler, Sr. Katie Strickland, Sr. Kiera Sullivan.

Outlook: With eight returning seniors, Rothstein expects the Wildcats to bring home the ECC championship trophy. The team's goal is to improve on the scoring averages from last season. Strickland is the golfer to watch.

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