Golf team qualifies for state tournament for fourth consecutive year

By Jason Yoffe
Published: October 2008

With a close one point victory over Westford, the golf team clinched a spot in the Division I North tournament. The win extended their qualifying streak from three to four years. In recent years, South’s golf program has not been able to play deep into the sectional round, but this year’s team has a good chance of advancing to the state championship.

Varsity coach Mike Fleming and JV coach Kevin Flynn have done a great job this season building a team that can compete for the state title. The recent success is a result of their hard work, as well as the players’ individual improvements. “I think we have an excellent team this year,” senior captain Jake Mazza said.

The golf team made tremendous strides this season, as senior co-captains Jake Tucker and Mazza have posted impressive scores against South’s most formidable opponents. These two seniors have also brought the team together off the course, supporting their teammates and driving them to matches and practices. “[They] have done a great job keeping the team together,” Coach Fleming said of his captains, “They leave no one behind.”

Both coaches make sure the team stays focused and motivated to win throughout the season. Philosophies such as playing in the present, and taking the match one shot at a time have helped the team overcome the uncontrollable elements of golf. “[It] helps me control my anger because I realize that it is impossible to change the previous shot, and I must prepare for the next one,” Mazza said of this key concept. The coaches effective techniques maintain players confidence and intensity levels at peak performance.

The players believe that their camaraderie and team chemistry have also helped them to persevere and win difficult matches. The team started a tradition of going out to dinner after match won, and frequently spends time together off the course on weekends. “It’s important that we connect because it allows everyone on the team to be rooting for one another, not just for the good of the team, but for the good of each player,” Mazza said.

The team’s encouragement and support has allowed each player to perform well in important situations and matches.

The depth of South’s golf team has contributed to their success, with excellent junior and sophomore golfers and a solid rising freshman. Such players like senior Harry Poster, juniors Bobby Marulli, Jesse Zorfas, and Ray Heinrichs, and freshman Adam Goldstein all add to the team’s dynamic. The team’s hard work and dedication is the main reason for their depth. “They show excellent effort,” Coach Flynn said. “They are [out there] every day.”

Even though golf is usually an individual sport, the entire team has to play well in order to win. “It’s a team effort from [players] one to eight,” Athletic Director Scott Perrin said.

Advancing to the state championship will be no easy task. South will have to win several tough matches in the sectional round in Beverly to qualify. If they can play their best golf of the season, they should advance and be strong competitors for the title. “I believe we can beat all of them if we play smart and focus on one shot at a time,” Mazza said, “And when we play like this, that is when we really shine!”

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