ORANGE >> The nine-hole results weren’t what North Haven golfer Rasmey Kong had become accustomed to at the beginning of this season.
But like any good golfer, Kong made the necessary adjustments to turn things around. And few high school golfers in the Greater New Haven area perform better than him when the postseason arrives.
Kong shot a 1-under-par 70 on Tuesday to earn medalist laurels in the Southern Connecticut Conference golf championship meet at Race Brook County Club. He was the only player to break par.
“I had nothing to lose. I can’t do any worse than I played at the beginning of the year,” Kong said.
Hand defended its team title with a cumulative total of 310 (the top four scores). Three of those golfers broke 80, including senior Brian Carlson, medalist each of the last two years in this tournament, who led the Tigers with a 75.
“At the beginning of the year, we weren’t too good playing on away courses. It’s good to finally put up some good scores on them,” Carlson said. “It gives us a lot of confidence and a sense of relief.”
Said Hand coach Jim Holleran: “Last year we were so good I would have been disappointed if we didn’t win. This year, the pressure was not on us because we were not supposed to win. This is a great win.”
Andrew Sciarretta of Fairfield Prep finished second with a 3-over-par 74.
Hand finished six strokes better than Amity. Tom Pellatt shot 75, Justin Freund, who missed all of last season with torn ligaments in his right ankle, posted 77 and Sam Jablonski, who missed half of this season after having foot surgery, posted a 83.
The Tigers will now look to make it a three-peat in the Division II state championship meet next week.
“The regular season is nice, but we just want to get better,” Holleran said. “The players worked hard to get better from day one. … I had confidence in my guys. This is a testament to their hard work.”
Kong was the medalist in last year’s Division II meet, shooting a 67 at Tallwood CC in Hebron. On Tuesday, Kong birdied holes 5, 6, 14 and 17.
Brent Marieb was Amity’s top player, shooting a 76, followed by Billy Emery (77). Also shooting 77 – and making all-SCC in the process – were James Nemia (Fairfield Prep), Zach Iannone (Notre Dame-West Haven) and Willy Stone (Sheehan).
at Racebrook Country Club, Orange (par 71)
Final Team Results: 1. Daniel Hand, 310; 2. Amity Regional, 316; 3. Fairfield Prep, 322; 4. Notre Dame, 323; 5. Xavier, 326; 6. Cheshire, 329; 7. Shelton, 355; 8. East Haven, 366; 9. Branford, 377
Medalist: Rasmey King (North Haven), -1 (70)