Athens sweeps at Tioga Country Club, stretches NTL lead.

By: The Review | Towanda Daily Review | September 16, 2014 | Photo courtesy The Review


Athens sweeps at Tioga Country Club, stretches NTL leadNICHOLS, N.Y. - Coming into Monday things were tightening up for Athens.

After jumping out to an early lead in the NTL standings in the last two golf matches Mansfield and Towanda took home wins on their home courses to tighten things up.

Just three wins and heading into the final stretch the Wildcats were hoping to reassert themselves and get some breathing room at Tioga Country Club and that's what they did.

"The kids are starting to realize their game and their potential," said Athens coach Jeff Novak. "Today was just a culmination of that. We had lost two a couple weeks ago and the kids were definitely ready for this. They saw a little bit that they had let themselves down and it was time to get that win."

Athens had three players under 90 as they took first with a 347, just ahead of second place Towanda (357) and third placy Mansfield-North Penn (378).

Zach Sitzman led the way, tying for medalist honors with Towanda's Nick Innocenzo, as both shot 81.

"Zach again had medalist honors, the third year running," said Novak. "Maybe we should have every match there."

Patrick Cole shot 84, Jacob Aquilio had 88, D.J. Springstead shot 94, Ryan Kennedy had 98 and Sam Rockwell scored 99.

The biggest thing Novak saw on the day was smiles on his kid's faces.

"They had fun," he said. "You're on a golf course, not at school, why wouldn't you be smiling. I was very pleased with everybody, the kids were all positive."

For Towanda after Innocenzo Michael Johnson shot 84, Mitchell Shoemaker had 93, Zack Lantz scored 99 and Ryan Chilson shot 122. Jon Hoffman shot a 66 in 9-hole exhibition.

Ryan Campbell and J.P. Shaw both shot 88 to lead the Tigers while Jarrod Burd scored a 92. Patrick Ross had 110, Josh Everetts shot 112 and Carl Dinger scored 118.

Wellsboro was third at 385 led by Brett Kendrick's 84. Ryan Reese shot 94, Aiden Moore had 101, Tyler Kennedy scored 106, Stone Alexander shot 109 and Kyle Reese had 133.

Sayre was fifth with a 410 behind Ryan Murrelle's 86. Also for the Redskins Jordna Buck shot 97, Aaron Wilhelm scored 110, Corey Perry had 117, Ben Harding had 119 and Jakeb Wressler shot 124.

Northeast Bradford was sixth on their home course at 419. Nate Watkins led the way with a 93 followed by Mike Wallitsch (104), Sawyer Russell (108), Jared Harris (114) and Nate Chilson (117).

In exhibition action Grant Marino shot 57, Nate Vandervort scored a 59 and Kip Hallett had 68.

Northern Tioga was seventh at 422 led by Nick Cevette's 97. Caleb Fitzwater shot 106, Riley Thompson had 108, Bryce Ianson scored 111, Alex Abbott had 112 and Mark McCall shot 136.

For Wyalusing Holdan Hitchcock scored an 88, Scott Eberlin had 99, Alex Dake shot 115 and Drew Gervin had 150.

This win was important not only for Athens to regain their confidence but because the next NTL match is over at Wellsboro.

"Wellsboro is the toughest course to play," said Novak. "Nobody plays it well. It's such a tough course we didn't want to sit back and think 'now we really have to have Wellsboro to push towards an NTL championship.' It's a huge weight off our shoulders."

The NTL will be at Wellsboro's Tyoga Country Club next week.