Following a summer of strong play in various amateur tournaments around Central New York, West Genesee’s John Clare began the fall high-school slate with another victory.
Clare, for the second year in a row, was the low individual at Monday’s Syracuse Invitational, a season-opening gathering of 10 Class AA boys golf teams at Drumlins Country Club.
Back in June, Clare tied for fifth place at the New York State Public High School Athletic Association championships at Cornell University’s course in Ithaca, a tournament won by New Hartford junior Derek Bard.
Over nine holes at Drumlins East, Clare shot a 34, two under par. That was enough to hold off Baldiwnsville’s Paul Pitcher by a single stroke, as Pitcher was the only other individual to break par.
Behind Clare, Nick Smith was second among Wildcat players with a 40. Pat Matroski had a 43, while Stuart Winn got a 44. Andrew Gearhart posted a 46 and Josh Tingley had a 48.
As a team, WG’s total of 207 meant a share of fifth place with Cicero-North Syracuse’s Blue squad. Baldwinsville claimed team honors with 195, nine shots ahead of runner-up Fayetteville-Manlius.
Already, the Wildcats had a league win in the books thanks to a 188-211 decision over Henninger on Aug. 24 at its home course, Westvale. Josh Tingley led the way with a 35, two shots ahead of Gearhart and three better than Clare.
Two days after the Syracuse Tournament, WG, back again at Westvale, tied Auburn, 194-194, in a three-way match where both sides moved ahead of the combined Syracuse city squad, who had a 227.
Clare went under par with his 33, the top individual by four shots over the Maroons’ Nikita Rosenblum. Matroski stepped up with a 38 and Smith (39) also broke the 40 mark as Tingley and John Sullivan had matching rounds of 42.