Classes may not start until next week, but the high school golf season is already in full swing.
The talent pool is deep on the local high school teams as several of the top local golfers return for the 2014 season.
The Broadalbin-Perth Patriots return three sectional-qualified golfers from last year’s squad that finished in a fourth-place tie in the Foothills Council standings.
Senior Brett Getman carried an average score of 41.3 last season and finished tied for second at the Class B sectional with junior teammate Alex Bond, who averaged 39.5 strokes last season. Both reached the ABCD state qualifier meet. They are joined by sophomore Noah Scott, who also was a sectional qualifier with a 45.2 average.
Six more experienced players return to the B-P roster this fall, including Sean Craig, Matt Dingman, Anthony Giuliani, Michael Piska, Nicholas Scavia and Michael Schebel.
“We’ve significantly improved the quality of our depth, but is it sectional-quality depth?” Broadalbin-Perth coach Eric Sengenberger said. “Bond and Getman should have outstanding seasons at the top of the lineup. Scott is a skilled sophomore with the tools to be very good. [Sean] Craig is a leader who looks to qualify for sectionals for the first time.”
The Johnstown Sir Bills are coming off a solid third-place finish in the Class B sectional tournament and are building around a solid core of veterans including Foothills Council all-star Chris Geleta, who will captain the Sir Bills along with Stephen Russo, and sophomores Ben Wager and Ben Russo.
“With over 20 kids coming out for the team this year, the line up will most likely see many changes,” Johnstown coach Mark Ralbovsky said. “The players will contend for the other four spots. Ethan Wager is playing well, as is David Malagisi, who carded a co-medalist 43 to top South Glens Falls in the second match of the year.”
The Gloversville Huskies lost state meet qualifier and sectional and Foothills Council runner-up Josh Fonda to graduation, but coach Mark LeFever is optimistic about the season.
“This is a young group with only one senior, Justin Putnam, on the roster,” he said. “They are learning quickly and are competitive in our matches so far. We need to keep progressing. The kids seem comfortable with our change from playing at Pine Brook the past few seasons to Kingsboro Golf Club.”
Veterans Kyle Fonda, Kyle Johnston and Dylan Sweeney join Putnam as returning players to form a competitive top four for the Huskies.
Experience will be key as the Amsterdam Rams make the move from the disbanded Big 10 Conference to the Foothills Council this fall.
The Rams posted an 8-6 overall record last season and lost no players to graduation.
James Phelps returns to lead the Rams, along with Corey Tambasco, Marc and Jon LaBahn, Kevin Ottati and Andy Madej.
“We have a veteran team, with three seniors and two juniors,” Amsterdam coach Tim Jones said. “We hope to build off the success that we had last year and qualify more players for sectionals. We are excited for the season to have started and look forward to the new challenges that the Foothills may present.”
Western Athletic Conference MVP Jordon Fordyce returns along with fellow first-team all-star Gavon Winn to give the Northville-Mayfield golfers a solid entry in the league.
Fordyce posted a 15-1 record in league play and was the WAC tournament and Section 2 Class C-D medalist.
Winn qualified for the C-D sectionals but did not compete due to an injury. Second-team all-star Frank Coulter, who averaged a score of 46 last season, returns along with Tom Pawlewski and Mario Quintana.
“With the combination of quality returning athletes and newcomers, this season looks to be better than last season,” Northville-Mayfield coach Warren Hoffman said.
The Canajoharie Cougars also look to be in the thick of the WAC championship battle.
The Cougars return all-stars Michael Balfe, Sam Shostek and Austin Countryman to the links, along with Trevor Bowerman, Baighly Sanders, Willie Parrino and Travis Colegrove contributing to the Canajohrie scores.
“We are looking forward to a great season and hoping to get a few players to qualify for sectionals,” Canajoharie coach Chris Smith said.
Michael Mancini takes over the coaching duties for the Fonda-Fultonville Braves as they battle in the Colonial Council ranks.
“We are a very young, inexperienced team,” Mancini said. “We will look to improve as the season progresses.”