Olentangy Valley News

Boys Golf

Patriots out to strong start in OCC

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Coach Ryan Snivley likes what he has seen from his Olentangy Liberty High School boys golf team early in the season.

The Patriots shot low numbers in tryouts and won the initial OCC-Central Division tournament, meaning they might be in for a fruitful year.

"We have had competitive teams during my tenure, but none of them have had as low of tryout scores as this year's team," said Snivley, who is in his 11th season. "I'm really looking forward to this season because we have the ability to shoot at or under par from several of our players."

Liberty won the first of four OCC-Central tournaments Aug. 7 at Clover Valley with a 310. Upper Arlington (315) was next, followed by Dublin Coffman (317), Hilliard Davidson (323), Marysville (329), Central Crossing (341), Thomas Worthington (347) and Westland (429).

Senior Marshall Ruffing shot a 72 to tie UA's Seth Brenneman for medalist honors. Sophomore Kyle Mitchell had a 75, followed by junior Cameron McCloskey (78), senior Trevor Haas (85) and freshman Trey Rath (89).

Also seeing time on varsity will be seniors Tommy Marks, Nate Meeker and Doug Simpson.

"We will have to stay consistent throughout the year and keep getting better once the school year starts even though we won't be playing as often," Snivley said. "We have all the tools to be very good. We just need all of our players to perform at the same time."

On Aug. 9, the Patriots shot 300 to win the 15-team Steve Youmans Classic at Oakhaven ahead of runner-up Olentangy (302). Mitchell was medalist with a 69 and Marks shot 72.

Mitchell led Liberty with a 71 in the second round of the OCC-Central Aug. 11 at Turnberry. UA (289) won, with Coffman (303) second -- based on a fifth-player score -- and Liberty (303) third.

Last season, the Patriots finished third (19-9) in the league behind Coffman (28-0) and UA (23-5). McCloskey was first-team all-league, with Mitchell on the second team and Marks on the third team. Simpson was honorable mention.

In the Division I district tournament at Apple Valley, Liberty finished eighth (326) behind state-qualifiers Dublin Jerome (299), Pickerington North (305) and New Albany (308). McCloskey (76), Simpson (79), Mitchell (82) and Marks (89) competed.

In a sectional at Darby Creek, Liberty (307) was the third and final team to qualify for district behind New Albany (299) and Coffman (304). Mitchell had a 74, with Marks and McCloskey both shooting 76.

Pioneers return senior-laden team

Orange returns five seniors with varsity experience, helping the transition under first-year coach Kris Miller.

Seniors Hunter Baxter, Luke Buchy, Ben Kunz, Ric Reynolds and Ryan Welsh are joined on varsity by juniors Zach Mahon and John Mik-ulec and sophomore Spencer Gifford.

"We definitely have a lot of experience, and it helps with that many seniors," said Miller, who replaced six-year coach Mark Corica. "They have played a lot of spring and summer tournaments and they mesh well together."

That was apparent when the Pioneers finished second (318) behind New Albany (314) in the first OCC-Capital tournament Aug. 7 at Apple Valley. Mount Vernon was third (321), followed by Olentangy (323), Delaware (331), Big Walnut (350) and Worthington Kilbourne (360). Franklin Heights did not have enough golfers for a team score.

Reynolds led Orange with a 76, followed by Baxter (78), Gifford (82), Kunz (82) and Mahon (84).

Last year, the Pioneers were fifth (13-15) in the league behind champion New Albany (27-1). Reynolds was second-team all-league and Buchy was honorable mention.

"We have a lot of seniors and throwing a new coach in the mix can be difficult, but we want to make things as easy as possible," said Miller, who has been a pro at Medallion for two years and a pro at Brookside for eight years before that.

"I'm getting to know them and they are getting to know me. We'll just keep working to improve."

Last year, Orange finished seventh (338) in a Division I sectional at Granville Golf Course behind district-qualifiers Jerome (300), St. Charles (301) and UA (304). Buchy (78), Baxter (88), Reynolds (88) and Kunz (89) competed.

Braves look to gain varsity experience

Olentangy graduated four all-league players and returns only two varsity performers from last season, when the Braves finished second (24-4) in the OCC-Capital.

Senior Jeff Darfus returns after being third-team all-league. Graduates Dylan Ahonen (first team), Donal Baker (honorable mention), Carter Rubcich (second team) and Evan Wilson (third team) all earned league honors.

Sophomore Matthew Homza also played varsity. Rounding out the top performers are juniors Jake Gerard, Michael Savoldi, Nick Scott, Connor Wilson and Ryan Wright.

"We graduated four seniors from last year and that takes a lot of varsity experience away from us," said coach Joel Glassburn, who is in his 11th season. "Being in a pressure situation and knowing how to handle it can be difficult unless you have been there."

The Braves finished fourth (323) in the first OCC-Capital tournament Aug. 7 at Apple Valley. Darfus led the way with a 79, followed by Homza (80), Savoldi (82), Scott (82) and Wright (90).

The Braves were runners-up (302) in the 15-team Steve Youmans Classic on Aug. 9 at Oakhaven. Darfus led with a 73, and Gerard and Homza both carded 76.

"Our strength is their desire to do well," Glassburn said. "We have a good group that works hard and works to keep getting better."

Last year, Olentangy finished sixth (325) in a Division I sectional at Turnberry behind district-qualifiers Pickerington North (299), Davidson (309) and Thomas (311). Homza shot an 80 and Darfus had an 84.

SCHEDULES

LIBERTY

Aug. 6 -- Westerville Central Invitational at Little Turtle

Aug. 7 -- OCC-Central at Clover Valley

Aug. 8 -- Mount Vernon Classic at Chapel Hill

Aug. 9 -- Steve Youmans Classic at Oakhaven

Aug. 11 -- OCC-Central at Turnberry

Aug. 12 -- Dublin Invitational at Golf Club of Dublin

Aug. 18 -- Westerville Central at Blackhawk

Aug. 20 -- Olentangy at Oakhaven

Aug. 27 -- OCC-Central at Darby Creek

Aug. 30 -- Upper Arlington Invitational at Pinnacle

Sept. 3 -- Thomas Worthington at York

Sept. 6 -- St. Charles Invitational at Brookside

Sept. 8 -- Wooster Invitational at Wooster Country Club

Sept. 10 -- OCC-Central at Apple Valley

Sept. 15 -- Dublin Coffman at Kinsale

Sept. 20 -- Rodney Butt Classic at Granville Golf Course

Sept. 23 -- Thomas Worthington at Kinsale

Sept. 27 -- Howlett Invitational at Worthington Hills

Oct. 2 -Delaware County Cup at Delaware Golf Club

Oct. 4 -- Dublin Jerome Honorary Invitational at Riviera

OLENTANGY

Aug. 6 -Westerville Central Invitational at Little Turtle

Aug. 7 -- OCC-Capital at Apple Valley

Aug. 8 -- Mount Vernon Classic at Chapel Hill

Aug. 9 -- Steve Youmans Classic at Oakhaven

Aug. 10 -- Delaware at Oakhaven

Aug. 12 -- OCC-Capital at Darby Creek

Aug. 20 -- Liberty at Oakhaven

Aug. 23 -- Kent Miller Colonial Fall Classic at Hiawatha

Aug. 27 -- OCC-Capital at Turnberry

Aug. 30 -- Upper Arlington Invitational at Pinnacle

Sept. 6 -- St. Charles Invitational at Brookside

Sept. 10 -- OCC-Capital at Clover Valley

Sept. 18 -- Thomas Worthington at York

Sept. 20 -- Findlay Trojan Invitational at Findlay Country Club

Sept. 24 -- Hilliard Bradley at Oakhaven

Sept. 27 -- Howlett Invitational at Worthington Hills

Oct. 2 -- Delaware County Cup at Delaware Golf Club

ORANGE

Aug. 7 -- OCC-Capital at Apple Valley

Aug. 9 -- Steve Youmans Classic at Oakhaven

Aug. 12 -- OCC-Capital at Darby Creek

Aug. 19 -- New Albany Invitational at Winding Hollow

Aug. 21 -- Marysville and Westerville Central at The Lakes

Aug. 23 -- Kent Miller Colonial Fall Classic at Hiawatha

Aug. 27 -- OCC-Capital at Turnberry

Sept. 2 -- Mount Vernon at Chapel Hill

Sept. 8 -- Hilliard Davidson at The Lakes

Sept. 9 -- Westerville Central, Westerville North and Westerville South at Medallion

Sept. 10 -- OCC-Capital at Clover Valley

Sept. 15 -- Grove City and Hilliard Davidson at Pinnacle

Sept. 20 -- Rodney Butt Classic at Granville Golf Course

Sept. 23 -- Marysville at Darby Creek

Sept. 25 -- Hilliard Davidson at Heritage

Oct. 2 -- Delaware County Cup at Delaware Golf Club

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