Lady Trojans cap season
Published 1:03 am, Wednesday, June 16, 2010
With two new coaches at the helm this year, the Weston girls golf team did well, although it did not quite live up to expectations. Led by co-captains Franci Litvak and Dylann Katz, a senior and junior respectively, the Lady Trojans finished 7-8 overall and had a 3-3 record in the SWC.
At the 2010 SWC Championship on May 25 in Orange, Weston finished second to Lauralton Hall, 412-420. The co-captains shot identical 93s to finish one shot behind the overall individual leader (Newtown sophomore Abbey Doski), while sophomore Carlye Rosen had a big day with a 58 on both the front and back nine. "We were definitely within reach of winning the SWC championship, but we lost a lot of strokes due to putting," said Coach Jason Akacki. "Other than that we played great golf on a hot day."
"This season was a lot of fun," said Katz. "And at SWCs I was able to finally connect parts of my game that had been shaky during the regular season. I was also extremely impressed with the rest of the team that day because everyone put their best effort forth. I think all the girls will agree that we are really happy for Lauralton Hall."
Although Weston finished second in the SWC championship meet, the team did not qualify for States and was only a few differential points (strokes on average) away from doing so. Akacki, a first-year coach, said that "looking back on my first year, I don't think the results matched up with our expectations to win both states and the SWC. I always stressed the importance of academics first and that was a cause for a sluggish start with AP exams and other tests."
The team progressed as the season went on, but the slow start made it hard to do as well, overall, as the team had wanted. Akacki said that if he were to change anything about the way he and co-head coach John Bushka ran run the team, it would be to focus on "the team commitment to the game of golf and to stress the importance of practicing alone at a range or a course on the weekend. A few girls took advantage of Fridays and weekends," he said, but not as often as he would have liked.
During the season this year, the usual starting lineup consisted of Litvak and Katz at the top, with averages of 46 and 48 respectively, followed by Rosen (58), junior Marlena Bonafide (61), and sophomore Hannah Smith (64). Junior Eleanor Sykes (68) occasionally started at the fifth spot, and was the alternate in other meets.
Looking forward to next year, Akacki thinks that "Losing Franci is obviously going to hurt, but Dylann definitely has the skill set, motivation, and talent to play the one-spot well and motivate Carlye and Marlena to step up their games." There is a strong core returning since the only graduating senior is Litvak, and the few freshmen who played this year improved over the season to look to compete for starting spots next year.
One of the team's biggest highlights this season was the 197 it shot at Griffith Harris in Greenwich -- a course rated as one of the toughest in the area. Competing against Greenwich, the second best team in Connecticut, Weston lost by only eight strokes and was led by a personal best from Litvak with a 39.
Akacki was also impressed by the close finish against Lauralton in the SWCs, and by Smith shooting a personal best of 49 at another meet. "We also played well in the rain, posting two victories against Masuk in some of the worse conditions possible for golf: windy, cold and raining."
Opposing coaches routinely told Weston's coaches how much they enjoyed playing the respectful, well-liked group of girls -- something the whole town takes pride in. "We had a great group of girls who love the game of golf, who all displayed great senses of humor and sportsmanship throughout the season," said Akacki.
For the most part, the Lady Trojans are pleased with the 2010 season and look forward to the future. Katz speaks for the whole team and said, "I can't wait for next season to come around!"