Mount Greylock's Alvarez, Wahconah's Dos Santos Qualify for State Golf Meet
AGAWAM, Mass. -- The Belchertown golf team claimed the Western Massachusetts Division 2 title on Monday, and Pathfinder’s Joe Conkey took home the hardware as the top individual.
But in a sense, the real winner at Crestview Country Club was Mother Nature.
The weather -- in particular the wind -- played havoc with the region’s best Division 2 golfers, keeping their scores in the 80s and 90s and their frustrations high.
Conkey’s winning score of 82 was seven strokes higher than the winning score last year at Cranwell. Belchertown’s sectional title was earned with an average score of 87 that still put the Orioles six strokes ahead of runner-up Southwick.
The top Berkshire County team was Wahconah, which placed third at 364. Mount Greylock and Hoosac Valley were right behind at 368 and 386, respectively. Monument Mountain placed eighth in the section with a team score of 410.
The county’s two top individual finishers qualified as individuals for the state championship. Mount Greylock’s Kyle Alvarez and Wahconah’s Jon Dos Santos carded rounds of 85 that put them in a three-way tie for fourth place.
Both said the wind presented a major challenge.
“We had a ball literally blow off our green because there were 25 mph winds,” Dos Santos said. “It was really tough out there this year.”
“It was super windy,” Alvarez agreed. “The 10th hole, we probably had 25-30 mph winds in our faces. That was definitely an experience to play with all that wind. You kind of have to keep it low.
“When you were putting, there would be a big gust and all these leaves would come across. It was definitely challenging.”
Dos Santos was joined in the scoring column by brother Nate Dos Santos with an 88 and their Wahconah teammates, Colette Basiliere (93) and Sam Clayton (98).
Mount Greylock got scores from Ben Gilooly (90), Mark Hayden (94) and Hunter Sarkis and Bennett Zimmerman, who tied at 99. The top four scores out of six players on each team go to the team total.
Hoosac Valley’s Jack Sniezek carded a 90. He was backed up by Henry Sniezek, Hayden Grimes and Derek Alibozek. Monument Mountain’s top finisher was Max Joyner at 100; Matthew Iemolini, Graham Herrick and Jackson Cunningham scored for the Spartans.
Wahconah’s Jon Dos Santos said that a putt here or there could have kept him in contention for medalist honors.
“I was happy with the way I performed, I mean, I can tell you right now on 11, I [missed] a 3-foot birdie,” he said. “And then from 17 to 1, I hit every green and had a three putt. So, if you turn everyone of those into a two putt, and I make the birdie, it’s an 81.”
All in all, Dos Santos was happy with the way his team performed, saying they Wahconah turned in a stronger showing than it did a year ago in the sectional.
And he and Alvarez have one more chance to carry their school’s name into interscholastic competition.
“I’m ecstatic,” Alvarez said of qualifying for the state meet. “It’s awesome to do this my senior year to end the year.”