WACCABUC, N.Y.— As a team or individually, any way you look at it this was another big week for the Somers golf team.
As a team, the Tuskers took on Carmel and Hendrick Hudson and cruised to the Conference Championship and advanced to the Section 1 team title match.
As individuals, three Tuskers earned the chance to compete in the Section 1 Open Tournament and two of them are moving on to compete in the New York State Championships.
In the conference championship, it was a battle of the three league champs for the northern Conference title. Somers knew it would take a team effort to defeat Carmel, a team that had handed the Tuskers one of their two losses during a 14-2 regular season.
The Tuskers needed a good round from top to bottom and that is what they delivered with four of the top five finishers. Somers finished with a team score of 196, almost 20 strokes ahead of Carmel at 215 and Hen Hud at 258. It was the first ever Conference title for the Somers golf team.
As expected, Christian Cavaliere led the way as he had the best round of the day at 34, and Nathan Han was second with a 37. The big story were seniors Nick Fierro and Joe Danko as they both shot a 41 to finish tied for fourth. Jon Henning shot a 43 as Somers finished with five of the top seven scores to win the title.
“It has been the steady, quiet focus of all our seniors to get the job done,” Somers coach Leigh Fiorito said. “It has been R.J. LaSpina, Nick Fierro and Joe Danko that have provided the depth that any team needs to become champions. The entire team has worked really hard to improve their game. Nick is a four-year varsity golfer who has always been a dependable scorer. He just missed the Section 1 open two years running. Joe is a first-year golfer who switched over from baseball. All season his scores have been low enough to be counted toward our team score.”
As Conference champs, Somers now advances to the Section 1 team championship match against the other Conference champions Rye and Bronxville. The match was scheduled for Tuesday, June 1, at Apawomis Golf Club in Rye.
In the Section 1 Open Tournament, Tuskers Cavaliere, Han and Henning all qualified to compete in the two-day tournament with the first round at Waccabuc and the second at Fenway in Scarsdale.
Cavaliere was hoping for a big finish as a senior veteran who has been there before. He shot a 75 in the first round and a 74 in the second to finish at 149 in fifth place overall. He fell short of a sectional title as defending champ James McHugh won the title again with a score of 144, but Cavaliere earned a trip to the state tournament for the fourth-straight year as a member of the Section 1 team.
This time he will be joined by his teammate Han. A freshman competing in his first Section 1 tournament, Han shot a 77 in the first round and a 78 in the second to finish at 155. That left him in a three-way tie for the final spot on the Section 1 team heading to the state tournament. In a playoff on the third hole, Han finished second as the first alternate, but one player dropped out so Han will be competing in the state tournament.
Henning shot an 80 on the first day to make the cut to return for the second day of the tournament, and he finished with a 171 overall.
“Once again the Section 1 open was exciting, the day hot and the golf impressive,” Fiorito said. “Christian worked hard and maintained his focus to qualify for the Section 1 state team for the fourth time. I couldn’t be more proud of the leadership that Christian has shown his teammates. Nathan will now follow in Christian’s footsteps as a freshman going to the state championship. Somers will have two golfers representing Section 1 in the state tournament for the first time in recorded Somers golf history.”
Cavaliere and Han will compete in the state tournament this weekend, June 5-6, at the Robert Trent Jones course at Cornell University.