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TARPON SPRINGS — Wentworth Golf Club has always provided a stern test for high school golfers. St. Petersburg’s boys found that out when they had trouble navigating the course during a tournament the first week of the regular season.
So when the Green Devils returned to play Wentworth in Monday’s Class 2A, Region 4 tournament, they made sure they were prepared.
St. Petersburg played practice rounds three times in the past week to get acclimated. That paid off as the Green Devils adjusted to the challenging course and conditions to advance to next week’s state tournament as runnerup by shooting 327 overall.
“It was a hard course, and I think it gave us an advantage having played it a few times and knowing what to expect,” said St. Petersburg’s No. 1 golfer, Jack Maguire.
Maguire finished with a team-low 74 and was tied atop the leaderboard with Mitchell’s Dylan Strout.
“I think we all came in confident as a team,” Maguire said. “The wind started picking up and we had to compensate a little. We’re all pleased that we’re moving on.”
Maguire played consistent golf, making par on 15 holes and birdieing one. Teammates Blake Dyer (80) and John Kevorkian (82) were not too far behind. Newsome showed off its depth, as well as its mental fortitude, to win the team title with 325. It is the first time the Wolves won a region title in Jim Govreau’s four seasons as coach.
Strout qualified as an individual along with Durant’s Chase Levesque, who finished with 76.
East Lake shot 333 overall and was led by Steve Aebersold’s 81. Palm Harbor University finished with 336. Piya Saegfah shot a team-low 79 for the Hurricanes.
A-5: Mustangs pleased to be moving on
LARGO — Northside Christian didn’t take home the trophy it wanted at the boys and girls Class A, Region 5 tournament, but both teams did live to play another day. The Mustangs boys and girls teams finished second at Bardmoor Country Club and advanced to next week’s state tournament. The top two teams in each group qualify.
The boys will play at Deer Island Golf and Lake Club in Tavares. The girls will play at Harbor Hills Country Club in Lady Lake.
On the boys side, Jesuit won with a score of 315, 10 shots ahead of Northside. In the girls tournament, Academy of Holy Names won with a score of 342, four shots ahead of the Mustangs.
Additionally, Ryan Orr (73) of Clearwater Central Catholic and Matt Rothrock (73) of St. Petersburg Catholic advance as boys individuals. Marisol Doglioli (79) of Clearwater Central Catholic and Kayla Connors (81) of Lakeland Tenoroc qualified for the girls.
“We’ve been preparing all year for this one day,’’ Northside girls coach D.J. Jackson said. “We knew Academy of the Holy Names would be the team to beat. We played pretty well and I’m proud of them.’’
All of the Mustangs players are in middle school. Leading the way was Ashley Zagers, who shot 82. Alyssa Cerino, who was one shot back at 83, had a hole-in-one on the par-3, 118-yard fifth hole. Sara Noto shot 86 and Ryanne Jackson 95.
“I call them the ponies,’’ Jackson said. “They are so young. They’ve competed against each other all year. You never know who’s going to shoot the lowest score.’’
Northside’s boys were led by Chris Keller and Troy Hicks, who each shot 79. Jasen Norris chipped in with 83 and Anthony Quintessenza shot 84.
Academy of Holy Names’ Emmy Martin had the girls low round of the day with 73. For the boys, Rothrock, Orr and Kyle Shealy of Canterbury each shot 73. Shealy was eliminated on the first playoff hole to determine the individual qualifiers. Orr birdied the second playoff hole to win the individual championship.
Rodney Page, Times staff writer