The 2011 High School golf season is underway and the Marian Colts are looking to keep their winning ways alive.
Over the past two seasons the Colts have been extremely successful going undefeated in Schuylkill League Division West play. Helping the Colt's cause is a plethora of talent hitting the links, returning nine players from last years 14-2 squad.
The difference in this year's team Coach Len Brylewski explains is their depth.
"We have a really deep team this year with four guys that can shoot in the seventies on a consistent basis," he said.
Helping solidify the Colt's depth is Tommy Gottstein who returns to the team after a year hiatus in South Carolina at a Player's Junior Golf Academy. Gottstein will serve as Marian's number one golfer and has his sights set on a Schuylkill League title.
"It's good to be back and our goal as a team is to go all the way and win the league," he said prior to a practice round last week.
Gottstein's playing partner and number two golfer Josh Green feels the same way.
"Our goal this year is to just play consistent golf," he noted. "We want to win the Schuylkill League and make districts again, and having Mike back this year is a big help."
Brylewski also likes how competitive his team is, especially in house where every match his kids are vying for a spot in the top 6.
"This is the best team I've ever had as far as pushing eachother goes", said Brylewski. "Every week there getting eachother better by competing for these spots."
The Colts may be returning a lot of talent but they will not be returning to Mountain Valley Golf Course, switching their home course to Mahoning Valley Country Club. The two courses are not at all similar but the Marian golfers believe the extra course time they receive at Mahoning will really help their chances at a Schuylkill League crown.
"Playing at Mountain Valley was tough because we were always hard pressed for practice time which hurt us a little bit", said Green. "Mahoning is a lot more laid back and we can get on the course whenever we want, which is great."
"I like Mahoning better", added Gottstein. "I feel the fairways are fuller and more playable which I'm hoping during the season will help us all shoot lower rounds."
No matter where the Colts play they have the weapons and the depth to compete for a Schuylkill League title once again and improve on last year's fouth place finish at the Schuylkill Championships.