Last updated: August 21. 2014 11:05PM - 633 Views
By Arthur Dowell Times Leader Correspondent

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A new Wyoming Valley Conference season of golf is underway with new faces and what appears to be a new top team.

Earlier this week, Crestwood dethroned Holy Redeemer by claiming the team title at the annual Tryba Preseason Invitational.

Holy Redeemer, which is entering this season as the reigning PIAA Class 2A champion, lost four of five starters from that squad and may no longer be the team to beat in the conference. The Comets won the Tryba for the first time as a team and Jason Dotzel became the first Comet to ever win the event as well. The Comets and Royals are in different classifications and won’t square off any other time this season so Crestwood will have bragging rights for the rest of the season.

The Royals are still the cream of the crop in Class 2A in the WVC and Art Brunn’s team always seems to be right there atop all of District 2 as well. Stars like Holy Redeemer grads Mariano Medico and Chase Makowski, both at Division I Monmouth now, are gone and a new core of players are ready to shine all over the league which should make the competition more level than in years past.

Key Dates

Here are the dates to circle on the calendar for the upcoming season:

Monday, Sept. 22: Wyoming Valley Conference Pre-District Tournament at Fox Hill Country Club; Thursday, Sept. 25: WVC Team Tournament at Fox Hill Country Club; Friday, Oct. 3: District 2 Team Championships at Elmhurst Country Club; Monday, Oct. 6: District 2 Championships at Fox Hill Country Club; Friday, Oct. 10: Subregional Team Qualifier (D2 champ vs. D4 champ) at Fox Hill Country Club; Wednesday, Oct. 15: Individual Regional Championships at Golden Oaks Golf Club, Fleetwood; Monday, Oct. 20-22: PIAA Individual and Team Championships at Heritage Hills Golf Resort, York.

Here’s a closer look at the 17 WVC golf teams:



Home Course: Wilkes-Barre Municipal (Par 36)

Coach: Mike Galli, 8th year

2013 Record: 6-4

Key Losses: Dalton Lentini, Alex Anderson, Corey Hauser

Key Players: Ryan Keyes So., Tyler Kurilla Jr., Collin Krokos Jr., Billy Mills Jr.

Coach’s Outlook: “We’re young and we lost three starters and we’re hoping to compete. Being .500 and better is a plus and we hope to do well.”


Home Course: Irem Golf Club (Par 36)

Coach: Tom Kilduff, 28th year

2013 Record: 9-2 (Division champions)

Key Losses: Ryan Georgetti, Justin Brojakowski, Chad Debona

Key Players: Brendan Baloh Sr., John Sabatini Sr., John Wilson Sr., Alexis Wyandt Jr.

Coach’s Outlook: “I’m hoping to (win) the division this year again. We always hope to win it every year.”

Pittston Area

Home Course: Fox Hill Country Club (Par 35)

Coach: Len Benfante, 25th year

2013 Record: 2-8

Key Losses: none

Key Players: Tyler McGarry Sr., David Zyzko Sr., Braulio Garcia Sr.

Coach’s Outlook: “I really think McGarry at this point in time can hold his own against the number one’s he is going to play. He won’t be over matched by most of them, and the rest of the kids will determine how we do. I hope to do better than two wins. Playoffs could be a stretch, but I’d love to be .500.”


Home Course: Shadowbrook (Par 37)

Coach: Andy Neely, 9th year

2013 Record: 7-4

Key Losses: Sean Soltysiak, Zach Faux, Jimmy Lyons

Key Players: Brett Soltysiak Jr.

Coach’s Outlook: “I have no idea what the league looks like, and I know we should be tough at home. If we can be on the plus side of .500, we will have a great year.”

Wyoming Area

Home Course: Fox Hill Country Club (Par 35)

Coach: Gordon Williams, 5th year

2013 Record: 9-3 (second D1 AA)

Key Losses: Courtney Melvin

Key Players: Madeline Wharton Jr., Anthony Shaver Jr., Michael Kolessar Sr., Gavin Kross Jr.

Coach’s Outlook: “I have a lot of depth and looking forward to a great year. Looking forward to playing in triple A with our rivals, Pittston.”



Home Course: Berwick Country Club (Par 36)

Coach: Greg Michael, 2nd year

2013 Record: 5-5

Key Losses: Ty Morzilla, Matt Dalo

Key Players: McKenzie Sult So., Lexi Fries Jr., Blake Eisenhauer Sr., Jake Demler So., Matt Champ So., Roopesh Kumar So., Dylan Michael So.

Coach’s Outlook: “My goal is to see improvement in all of their golf games. I’ll be happy with any type of success we can find in them.”


Home Course: Blue Ridge Trail

Coach: Mark Jarolen

2013 Record: 9-1

Key Losses: Billy Dombroski, Joe Hurn

Key Players: Jason Dotzel, Sr.; Seth Korch, Sr.; Rob Coslett, Sr.; Joey Grandinetti, Sr.; Tyler Papura, Jr.; John Hawley, Jr.; Ryan Magin, So.; Ryan Rogan, So.; John McGroarty, So.; Shane Angle, Fr.

Coach’s Outlook: “With the loss of Billy Dombroski and Joe Hurn, we hope to be competitive in our division.”

Hazleton Area

Home Course: Sugarloaf Golf Club (Par 36)

Coach: John Provost, 2nd year

2013 Record: 0-10

Key Losses: Rich Gawel

Key Players: Josh Provost Jr., Geran Triano Jr., Brad Evert Sr., Adam Grula Jr.

Outlook: “With a more experienced, dedicated, and focused team along with key newcomers we are looking to maintain a competitive level and increase on the win totals from the last couple of years.”

Wyoming Valley West

Home Course: Irem Golf Club (Par 36)

Coach: Gary Mack, 7th year

2013 Record: 4-6

Key Losses: Leanna Delarte, Derrick Heffelfeiger

Key Players: Tyler Yankosky Jr., David McCue Jr., Tim Walters Sr.

Outlook: “We’re always optimisitic, the kids worked hard in the offseason. We’re going to be competitive and our kids have worked hard to get better in a lot of spots.”



Home Course: Hollenback Golf Course (Par 33)

Coach: Chris Buzinkai, 9th year

2013 Record: 1-9

Key Losses: Michael Rowe

Key Players: Sean Paul Williamson Sr.

Coach’s Outlook: “Hopefully we can build on last year’s victory and get a couple more this year, surprise a few teams along the way. They’re all nice kids learning the game.”

Holy Redeemer

Home Course: Wilkes-Barre Municipal Golf Club (Par 36)

Coach: Art Brunn Jr., 24th year overall; 8th at Holy Redeemer

2013 Record: 20-0 (Discrict champions, sub-regional champions, state champions)

Key Losses: Mariano Medico, Chase Makowski, Mike Boland, Andrew Crossin

Key Players: Ryan Crossin Sr., Alex Rowan Sr., Jake Martin Sr., Conlin McAndrew Sr., Connor Murray Sr., Taylor Isacs Sr., Ken Wallace Fr.

Outlook: “After last year, I don’t know what to expect to be honest. It’s not what to expect from my guys, it’s what the other schools have to offer. I’m very excited. It’s this years seniors turn to take the spotlight and shine.”


Home Course: Hollenback Golf Club (Par 33)

Coach: Sean McLaughlin, 6th year

2013 Record: 2-8

Key Losses: n/a

Key Players: Lee Falzone Jr., Billy Norton So., Andy Hossage So.

Coach’s Outlook: “We’re young and looking to get better with each match and practice. The kids look to get better, and we look to be much better.”

Wyoming Seminary

Home Course: Huntsville Golf Club (par 36)

Coach: Matt Occhiato, 3rd year

2013 Record: 7-5 (division runner-ups)

Key Losses: Jon Zirnheld

Key Players: Andrew Golden Sr., Jarod Godlewski Jr.

Coach’s Outlook: “We look good, and we have some good young kids coming up. We’ve been playing golf all summer long and working on the golf game. We’ll see what happens.”


Hanover Area

Home Course: Wyoming Valley Country Club (Par 35)

Coach: Bob Shoemaker, 2nd year

2013 Record: 4-7

Key Losses: Matt Kuhl, Fred Schiel, Mike Steves

Key Players: Marissa Steves Sr., Shelby Monk So., Travis Jacobs Sr., Desmond McCance Fr., Devan Senk Fr.

Coach’s Outlook: “Have our younger players gain competitive experience with each and every match and just to get better as the year goes on.”


Home Course: Huntsville Golf Club (Par 36)

Coach: Tom Motovidlak, 6th year

2013 Record: 9-2 (division champions, conference runner-ups)

Key Losses: Nick Egan

Key Players: Adam Motovidlak So., Ben Pilch Sr.

Coach’s Outlook: “I feel we are going to fare out pretty well. We have some good kids with potential coming here and we’re still kind of young, and overall we should carry out pretty good.”

MMI Prep

Home Course: Valley Country Club (Par 35)

Coach: Jeff Lotz, 3rd year

2013 Record: 6-5 (district runner-ups)

Key Losses: Devan McCarrie

Key Players: Sam Harman Sr.

Coach’s Outlook: “We win.”


Home Course: Edgewood in the Pines (Par 36)

Coach: Nina Matzoni, 8th year

2013 Record: 3-8

Key Losses: Mike Schekski

Key Players: Joel Olszik Sr., Matthew Daniels So., Brinpton Ball Jr.

Coach’s Outlook: “I’m looking forward to an enjoyable season, and hopefully we can walk away with a couple of wins.”

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