If Southington golf continues to play this well, the 162 the Blue Knights shot in the season opener on April 2 may be one of the scores that gets dropped when state qualifying is determined.
Southington continued its torrid start to the 2019 season with a 149-227 win over Bristol Central on April 11 at Hawks Landing Country Club. The Knights shot 149 for the second straight time at Hawks Landing, and four players put up scores in the 30s. Southington improved to 3-0 with the victory.
“When bogey is your worst score, you’re not three-putting, and you’re keeping the ball on the course the way these guys move the ball and hit the ball, you’re bound to shoot good scores, so I’m proud of them,” coach Jim DiNello said. “I feel like the course management is good right now, they’re playing smart, they’re not trying to take any more than what the course is going to give them at this point, and they’re taking advantage of just steady golf and good opportunities when they show up.”
Max Chubet and Shawn McKnerney, Southington’s No. 1 and No. 3 golfers, shared medalist honors at one-over-par 36. Austin Carta recorded a 38 while Colby Zegrzdyn added a 39. Chubet earned or shared medalist honors for the third time in three matches. For McKnerney, it was his first time as a medalist this season. Adam Ward led a very young Bristol Central contingent with a 42.
So why has Southington been so successful?
“I think the biggest thing is no penalty strokes,” DiNello said. “We’re keeping the ball on the golf course, hardly any three-putts. We’re not three-putting greens, and we’re not making a lot of double bogeys at all.”
Carta rolled in a long putt from off the front of the third green in the April 11 match, one of many impressive efforts from the Knight golfers. It usually takes Southington a few matches to get going, but not this season.
“Over the course of the past couple years, we don’t come out this good this early, so it’s good to get off to a good start,” DiNello said.
DiNello said the golfers are feeling confident about the way that they’re playing, but he added that there is a lot of golf left to play. Before that golf gets played, however, Southington takes 11 days off in between matches. The school’s spring break falls during that time.
“The guys will go into break feeling pretty good at 3-0 and having really three keeper scores for state tournament qualifying, which is great,” DiNello said. “I don’t think any of those scores are going to get thrown out. If they do, that means we’re playing really, really, really well.”
Up next: Southington is off this week and returns to action on Tuesday, April 23, against NW Catholic at Wampanoag Country Club in West Hartford. The match is scheduled to begin at 3 p.m.
To comment on this story or to contact staff writer Kevin Roberts, email him at KRoberts@SouthingtonObserver.com