Give Arundel edge in 4-way battle for title Golf preview

September 07, 1997|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

From what he saw in last week's rain-shortened A Division match at Eisenhower Golf Course, Broadneck coach Pete Regala Jr. doesn't expect any team to run away with the Anne Arundel County public schools title.

"It looks like anyone can win it," said Regala, a professional golfer on the North Atlantic Tour. "Arundel is still the team to beat, but there are going to be four schools fighting it out."

Besides Arundel, Regala's alma mater, the A Division championship award could end up in the trophy cases at Severna Park, Broadneck or Old Mill.

Arundel's trophy case is already overflowing with golf awards. Since Carol Nutt took over the school's program in 1985, the Gambrills school has won seven county regular-season titles, six county tournament championships, four district titles and two state crowns -- and the Wildcats are shooting for more.

Nutt had 34 players to choose from at the start of the season, including defending county champion Josh Upton. A senior, Upton will occupy the No. 1 spot, followed by Drew Kelly, Danny Moore, Andrew Kostic, Jonny Hanczaryk and Robert Jones.

"We should be pretty solid," said Nutt. "I know what we have, but I'm not sure what everyone else in the A Division has back."

Here's a look:

* Severna Park: The Falcons, who dominated county competition in 1995, have two solid players in seniors Adam Huang, who carries an eight-handicap, and Jared Kensky. But beyond that, the Falcons are young and inexperienced. "It all depends how our youngsters do," said Falcons coach Dick Barto. "I expect Adam will be there with the best in the state."

* Old Mill: Seven players are fighting for six spots, and Patriots coach Bruce Lawton is hoping the intra-squad competition will help his team make a run at the title. Seniors Garret Olm and Steve Bogdon are battling to represent the top spot, and Andrew Birgel, David Brandon, Chris D'Andrea, Chad Marquardt and Justin Bereznak fight to be among the top six. "We have enough quality in our top six that we should be able to pull four good scores," said Lawton. "If they don't produce, there's someone else who can jump into that spot."

* Broadneck: Winners of last year's B Division title, the Bruins are eager to show they can compete in the A Division. The Bruins did that last season by finishing second at the county tournament at Eisenhower. Back from that team are senior Billy Chesley and junior Drew Linder.

* North County: Nelson Martin enjoyed his biggest turnout ever, but most of his 22-member team is still learning the game. Among the Knights veterans are Kevin Peck, Dallas Simmons and Lori Koch, a junior who finished fifth in the girls competition at last year's state tournament.

* South River: The early favorite in the B Division, the Seahawks have four golfers -- Jeff Rice, Michael Buck, Matt Van Wie and Adam Thacker -- who coach Ron Price says are capable of shooting in the high 30s for nine holes.

* Chesapeake: Veteran coach John Irvine says he has depth and parity, with only two strokes separating his No. 1 and No. 8 players. Seniors Ryan Howard, Matt Rice, John Swatala and Jennifer Davis lead the 27-player squad but are challenged by juniors Adam Moore, Chris Baguley and Carl Gunther and sophomore Heath Cooper.

* Annapolis: A team that dropped to the B Division this season, the Panthers have three consistent performers in Judd Carstens, Caleb Klein and Kemp Hammond, but after that, said coach Joe Martin, "it's wide open." The Panthers' No. 4 man, David Wooster, will miss at least two weeks as he recovers from a hernia operation.

* Glen Burnie: Coach John Himmelheber will build his young team around juniors Dave Wineke and Brooks Slater, who are interchangeable at the top two spots.

* Southern: Coach John Aylor credits the popularity of Tiger Woods for his team's large turnout this fall. Aylor had 16 come out for the team, but unfortunately, most of them are new to the sport.

* Meade: In a similar boat, Meade had its biggest turnout in John O'Neill's four years as coach. "I'm excited," he said. "They're just starting to come around to thinking golf."

Pub Date: 9/07/97

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