Tigers' best round beats PHS
BOB FORD/TIMES NEWS Northwestern's Cole Miller uses his long putter to tap in for a birdie on hole No. 10.
Both teams entered the match looking for improvement.
Both teams received outstanding performances from their respective aces.
Both teams' coaches are concerned with improving.
Although there were a number of positive performances for both teams, it was Northwestern that was able to post a 402-437 Colonial League victory on Wednesday.
Playing in the same foursome throughout, Northwestern sophomore Cole Miller and Palmerton senior Ben Andrews knew each other's games and challenged each other hole-for-hole, before Andrews barely outshot Miller 66-67, for medalist honors.
Overall, NW head coach Justin Smith and his counterpart David Lavin are definitely content with the way their teams have been playing and yesterday's rounds were a heavy indication of improvement.
"This is the first match of the year that we didn't need to use a score in the 90s," Smith mentioned afterwards. "In order to win and be competitive in this league, we need to do that and continue in that direction."
"437 is our lowest team score to-date," Lavin said. "That's all you can ask for from them."
The top five players for the Tigers (6-3) had reputable scores on the challenging, par-72 Blue Ridge Country Club course. Other than Miller's 67, sophomore Nick Vecellio fired a four-over 76 to provide his team with a strong one-two punch. Stephen Reitz, Mike D'Ancona and Danny Everett - all seniors - shot an 82, 88, and 89, respectively to follow suit for a hard-to-beat team score of 402.
The Bombers, on the other hand, received an 82 from junior KeKoa Mook, and Brett Snyder shot a 90. Sophomore Alex Raub's 96 and junior Ryan Saylor's 103 rounded out their team's top five.
"The kids can always improve," Smith said. "Some of our better players haven't peaked yet, but they're understanding the mental part of the game better and better each day and that should help them with their consistency as the season continues."
Smith said he has seen good things across his entire roster of players.
"I'm impressed with some of the other kids that don't necessarily finish in the top five all of the time. They're improving nicely and if they keep it up, we'll be in a good position at the end of the year."
For the Bombers, similar progress is noted, but at a slightly different level.
"We're getting to the point where the players can manage their own games and fix the problems they notice on their own," Lavin said. "For them to be able to do that is great and they fix their own mistakes then."
Both Andrews and Miller were in high spirits following their low rounds and deserved to be.
"My putting was the best it's been all summer long," Andrews said. "I only had 26 putts. My short wedges were also right on target today because I had a lot of tap-ins."
Miller, the recently-crowned 2011 B.R.C.C. Men's Club Champion, has reaped from the benefits of playing at PHS' home course all summer long, as well. "I had some tough shots today that I executed and I drove the ball really well today. It helps that I know the course with my putting, especially, being aware of the breaks on greens."
With both teams seemingly on the right track to overall improvement, it's safe to expect good things from these two squads as the concentrated scholastic golf season rolls on.