MCLAUGHLIN-1011

HOWARD HERMAN — THE BERKSHIRE EAGLE

Wahconah's Pat McLaughlin sinks a short putt during a Berkshire County golf match at Waubeeka in Williamstown on Saturday.

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WILLIAMSTOWN — It was a good day to be a golfer from Mount Greylock or Wahconah. It was a great day, just to be a golfer.

"For sure. With all the stuff going on now, it's kind of a good thing to have," Mount Greylock's Alex Axt said. "With remote school and all that stuff is kind of a downer. When you get to come out here and play against other kids around the county, it's definitely fun."

It was particularly fun for Axt, who played the Waubeeka Golf Links' front nine in 6-over-par 42, to earn medalist honors against golfers from Wahconah, Monument Mountain and Mount Everett. Axt edged Wahconah's Dan Wilson by one stroke to be medalist. Monument Mountain's Bradley Danyluk and Mount Everett's Cooper Rothvoss were two shots behind the medalist at 44.

"I actually felt pretty good today," Axt said. "The course played really, really difficult [because of] the lack of rain. Usually at this point in the fall, Waubeeka is really wet. It was really firm. Usually you can fly it halfway to the hole. Now it just rolls forever. If you lip out [a putt], it's going to roll for about eight feet."

In the team results, Greylock and Wahconah battled to a 182-all draw. The Mounties and Warriors both beat Monument 182-183, and beat Mount Everett 182-214. The Spartans, who were wearing black ribbons in memory of the late Tom Sullivan, the longtime golf pro at their home course Wyantenuck Country Club, beat Mount Everett 183-214.

Per the official scorer, Mount Greylock was awarded the tie-breaker over Wahconah, courtesy of the Mounties' fifth scoring golfer coming in one stroke below Wahconah's.

Axt had five pars, three bogeys and a double-bogey on the par-4 first hole.

Wilson also had five pars, but had one extra double to account for the one-shot difference between himself and Axt.

"It's the best round I've shot on an away course," Wilson said. "I felt like I left a few shots out there, especially on the last two holes. My putting felt amazing today. The drives were actually pretty there. I was happy with that."

One thing that can be said for certain, whether one of the 24 golfers shot a birdie or a triple-bogey, just being out on the course brought joy to each and every one of them.

"It's the greatest thing in the world" to be competing, said Mount Everett's Rothvoss. "I was expecting not to have a senior season. To be able to come out here, it's the greatest thing."

Monument's Benj Ryel, who shot 47 to tie with teammate Andrew Churchill and finish five shots behind Axt, was glad to be part of the Spartans' golf team because his regular sport won't start up until the MIAA's Fall II season.

"I didn't even know I'd be playing golf this year. I've always played soccer," he said. "It's cool that we're actually getting to play."

In 2019, Ryel scored six goals and had an assist for the Spartans on the soccer pitch.

In 2020, the Monument senior said that it's been adjustment playing golf instead of soccer.

"Definitely. It's the complete opposite. Fast-paced playing instead of walking around and hitting a shot," Ryel said after he completed his nine holes. "[The rhythm] is completely different. I've gotten used to it over the summer because I play every day. Going out behind the high school and playing soccer is so much different than driving over to Wyantenuck and playing a few holes."

Wahconah coach Pete Terpak said that for his young team, having matches can only help.

"On a day like today, it's great. It's perfect," he said. "I think we're getting some valuable experience for these young guys. We're playing a bit of catch up to some of the better teams in the county, so this is an invaluable experience for these guys to take a step forward."

There are five Berkshire County schools that are playing golf in the regular fall season. Lee is the fifth, but the Wildcats were not able to play Saturday.

Greylock coach Mitch Spooner, who along with assistant Casey Conry was busy collecting scorecards and entering them into the computer, was all smiles when he was asked about his team — and the others — playing competitive golf.

"This means everything to the kids," he said. "Just to be able to have a season and be out here. We're not trying to take anything for granted. We're taking every safety precaution we can and make sure everyone's using PPE's all the time. Outside of that, we keep reminding them that this is a great privilege. We're happy to have you here, but stay in the rules, because we don't want to lose this for anyone else.

"You can see it in the athletes' faces. They want to be doing something and they're happy to be here."

———

Team scores

Mount Greylock def. Monument Mountain 182-183, Greylock def. Mount Everett 182-214, Greylock, Wahconah tie 182-182; Wahconah def. Monument 182-183, Wahconah def. Everett 182-214; Monument def. Everett 183-214.

MOUNT GREYLOCK (182) — Alex Axt 42, Owen Petropulos 48, Ben Prescott 47, Cayden Conry 46, Cam Turner 47, Ben Dingman 48.

WAHCONAH (182) — Pat McLaughlin 46, Dan Wilson 43, Tim Kaley 49, Cam Lewis 53, Brady Breitmaier 46, Kevin Esko 47.

MONUMENT MOUNTAIN (183) — Benj Ryel 47, Andrew Churchill 47, Bradley Danyluk 44, Callan Hoff 45, Shea Hull 52, Henry Carroll 56.

MOUNT EVERETT (214) — Cooper Rothvoss 44, Jack Seward-Dailey 55, Kolby Bleau 54, Kai LaRose 61, Jacob TenBroeck 61, Eli Smith 73.

Birdies: Churchill (MM), Par 4 6th hole.

Howard Herman can be reached at  hherman@berkshireeagle.com or 413-496-6253. On Twitter: @howardherman

Sportswriter-Columnist

Howard Herman is a sports columnist at The Berkshire Eagle. The dean of full-time sportswriters in Western Mass., he has been with the Eagle since 1988, and is a member of the New England Baseball and Basketball Hall of Fame.


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