Jamesville-DeWitt boys golf secures SCAC Empire 3-peat; West Genesee claims Metro title

by Joanne Miller

The Jamesville-DeWitt boys golf team has been a force to be reckoned with in the Salt City Athletic Conference Empire division for the past three seasons. Their dominance was once again on display as they capped off their third straight undefeated season with a third consecutive league title at Green Lakes Golf Course.

In the championship match, Jamesville-DeWitt narrowly edged out Oswego with a score of 388-407, with Auburn finishing third with a score of 464. The team’s coach, Paul Valentino, expressed his excitement and pride in his team’s performance, especially considering the consistency they have displayed throughout the year.

The individual performance of Oswego’s Gavin Ruggio stood out as he earned medalist honors after shooting an impressive 68. Jamesville-DeWitt’s Jackson Saroney and Mitchell Archer rounded out the top three with scores of 70 and 75, respectively. All three players, along with Kevin Waters and Louis Roman from Oswego, and Tate Mullin and Sam Ahn from Jamesville-DeWitt, earned spots in the state qualifier tournament in May.

Valentino acknowledged that it was unfortunate that only seven golfers from the entire field could qualify for the tournament. He mentioned that he had a couple of players who were on the cusp and narrowly missed out on advancing. However, he remains hopeful for the future and believes that the team’s qualifiers will benefit from the next six months of training and competing in tournaments.

Many of the Jamesville-DeWitt players participate in tournaments year-round, even traveling to warmer climates in the south to compete. This dedication and hunger to improve their game have contributed to their success.

In another division of the Salt City Athletic Conference, the West Genesee boys golf team claimed the SCAC Metro Division title for the first time under coach Tom Cole’s leadership. They defeated Fayetteville-Manlius Green with a score of 409-421, while Cicero-North Syracuse Blue finished third with a score of 432.

The highlight of the tournament was Benjamin Glass from West Genesee, who shot a 78 and earned medalist honors. This victory was particularly meaningful for Glass, as he missed last year’s sectional tournament by just one stroke. He will be joined by his teammates, Jack Elinich, Jason Clifton, Frank Barbuto, and Jon Shoults, at the state qualifying tournament next May. Andrew Banish from the West Genesee Blue team also qualified after shooting an 85.

Coach Cole expressed his satisfaction with the team’s performance throughout the season, despite a couple of challenging matches. He hopes that the team will build on their success and continue to advance in the state qualifying tournament.

Several other golfers from different teams also secured spots in the state qualifier, including Tyler Burns, Ryder Baldwin, Duncan McDaniel, and Hugh Roddy from F-M Green, as well as Drew Kippen and David Schmidt from C-NS Blue.

The complete results of both the SCAC Empire and Metro tournaments can be found on the Syracuse High School Sports website.

Overall, it has been an impressive season for the Jamesville-DeWitt and West Genesee boys golf teams. Their performances in the conference tournaments demonstrate their skill and determination, as well as their potential to succeed at the state qualifying tournament. The coaches and players are looking forward to the months ahead, where they will continue to train and participate in tournaments to hone their skills and prepare for the next level of competition.

Contact James McClendon anytime via email at jmcclendon@syracuse.com, on Twitter @JMcClendon44, or on Facebook.

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