November 01, 2006

East Hampton Boys Win Golf Title

It wasn't planned, but sometimes the best things can come from unplanned events. That theory proved true for the incredibly young East Hampton boys' varsity golf team last week when it won the Suffolk County League VIII championship with a 6-3 victory over Westhampton at the Westhampton Country Club.

The Hurricanes (8-2 in League VIII) entered the match tied for first with the Bonackers and needed to win on their home course in order to grab a share of the league crown. Eighth grader Zach Grossman and his youthful, yet incredibly skilled teammates made sure that Westhampton never came close to achieving its goal.

Grossman, who made headlines the previous week after posting a course record 63 at his home club, shot a two-over-par 37 on Westhampton Country Club's front nine to lead the charge. He defeated the Hurricanes two-time All-County golfer Matt Liquori by six strokes.

"It was a great match and we won it in the last foursome," said Bonackers coach Claude Beudert. "Zach and John [Nolan] really stepped up and it was definitely a team effort because even the guys that lost kept it close for us."

Other East Hampton golfers that contributed in the win included eighth grader John Nolan, who defeated Jack Cento by four shots and junior Eric Hook who also won his match. Sophomore John McGuirk was edged by only one stroke by Matt Stevens and seventh grader Cameron Yusco lost another close match to Westhampton's Jeff Brown. Tyler Yusco was edged by two shots by Tyler O'Rourke.

East Hampton (9-1 overall) entered the season as a long shot to win the league title, especially with heavily favored Southampton along with an always in the running Westhampton club in the division.

Unfortunately for the Mariners (7-3 overall), a tough 5.5-3.5 loss to Westhampton back on October 10 wound up eliminating them from title contention even though Southampton handed the Bonackers their only loss of the season, 9-0 on October 12. In that match, John Ludlow and Julian Pascual both starred on their home course as each shot five-over 39's on the front nine.

Southampton found itself on the receiving end of some unfortunate news in their last match against Westhampton when one of its players signed his scorecard with an incorrect score. The score wasn't counted and it ultimately contributed to the Mariners loss.

East Hampton earned a trophy case full of impressive victories this season including a pair of wins over Westhampton and a 6-3 victory over Southampton on September 26.

"We had that balance this year and I think that every successful team needs balance," Beudert said. It makes it [winning the league title] more pleasing because we have such a young team. These guys really have a love for the game."

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