TORRINGTON — Torrington High School’s golf team, ruler of the NVL links for years before Holy Cross’s recent four-year reign, is back on top.
The Red Raiders (7-0) cemented their regular-season league lead with a 167-184 win over St. Paul Catholic Tuesday afternoon, pushing the 6-2 Falcons back to third place behind 6-1 Holy Cross.
Torrington administered Holy Cross’s only loss two weeks ago “by 10 or 12 shots,” Raider coach Joe Minutillo said.
The Crusaders gave St. Paul its first loss four days later.
“Anyone in our lineup can have a good game,” Torrington’s sophomore No. 1, John Ledda said.
Tuesday at the Torrington Country Club, senior Carson Sparks, playing at No. 3, shot an even-par 36, his best score of the year, including a 20-foot putt for an eagle on the par-5 second hole.
“My putting was better today,” Sparks said in the understatement of the day.
A rare no-wind day at a pristine Torrington Country Club course contributed to birdies by St. Paul senior captain Matt Raymond on the par-3 sixth hole and Ledda on the second.
All four of the Raiders’ scorers, including John Roscello and Anthony Marinelli, shot well under 50 for Torrington’s best team score of the year, but Ledda’s disappointment with his 40 might best summarize the team’s dominance so far.
“I played well in the summer season and I’m not doing as well (in the NVL season) as I thought I would, especially today, without a wind,” he said.
The difference between this year and last year’s second-place Raiders finish, Leadda said, is “overall depth,” including the addition of junior Roscello.
Nevertheless, Ledda and anyone else whose game has suffered needs only to remember a gruesome early spring for a possible reason.
St. Paul’s Raymond refuses to buy it.
“Our home golf course, Chippanee, is always wet because its so hilly. We’re use to it,” he said, reflecting the group’s enthusiasm for the game, rain or shine.
“It’s something to do with friends,” Raymond said.
“I live in Torrington and I grew up with these guys,” said junior Ryne Salius, St. Paul’s No. 1 for the third year. Mike Dolce, the Falcons’ No. 3, is also a Torrington resident.
Minutillo, in his 33rd year as Torrington’s coach, sees an overall drop in numbers and quality in the league from 10 years ago, but there’s good news as well.
“We have 11 girls making up their own team and almost every golf team in the league has at least one girl,” Falcons coach Ryan Phillip said.
Torrington 167, St. Paul Catholic 184
At Torrington Country Club (par 72)
Medalist: Carson Sparks, Torrington 36.
St. Paul: Ryne Salius 43; Sam Mazzarelli 47; Matt Raymond 49; Mike Dolce 50.
Torrington: Carson Sparks 36; John Ledda 40; John Roscello 45; Anthony Marinelli 46.
Records: St. Paul Catholic 6-2; Torrington 7-0.