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Week of April 29: Woodstock Academy completes 5-match week with 4 wins

Woodstock Academy coach Rich Garceau agreed; getting a win against Killingly in boys golf is no small feat.

“We tied Killingly about three or four years ago, but the last time we beat Killingly was about eight years ago,” Garceau said.  “Killingly certainly has set the standard for success in high school boys golf over the past 10 years or so, so certainly going into the match we knew we would need to work and not quit on ourselves to have any chance to win.  I was very proud of the team because they went into the match with a determination to do well.”

And do well is what the Centaurs did.

Woodstock Academy came away with a 4 ½ - 2 ½ win over their neighboring rivals on Thursday at the Quinnatisset Country Club.

It was a nice boost going into a pair of matches with Bacon Academy and Stonington at the Stonington Country Club on Friday.

The Centaurs pulled out a pair of 6-1 victories in those matches to raise their record to 7-2 overall.

What made the win over Killingly even more satisfying for Woodstock Academy was the way in which the team pulled out the victory.

The top two players did not have their finest days.

Logan Rawson carded a 41 and Donny Sousa shot a 44.

“Logan and Donny, respectively, struggled by their standards and I was really proud of them because they fought through their struggles and still turned in a decent score.  Had they given up on themselves and posted anything much higher than that, we would have had a much greater difficulty notching the win,” Garceau said.

Sousa did split his match with Layne O’Leary to account for the half point.

That meant it was up to the youngsters.

And they came through.

Freshman Brady Hebert tied for medalist in the match with a four-over par 39 to down Killingly’s Quin Crowley by three strokes.

Sophomore Aidan O’Connor shot a 42 to best Sebastian Sierakowski by seven.

That was the two points the Centaurs needed as they also best Killingly in aggregate strokes, 166-171, to take the two points in that category for the win.

“Brady Hebert and Aidan O’Connor had to dig deep in themselves and post scores to help lift our two team leaders,” Garceau said. “The Killingly match is one of those times where I could really see how under those circumstances, golf becomes a team sport.  The two that usually lift the less experienced players needed lifting themselves and the younger, less experienced players stepped up for the win.”

But it was Rawson and Sousa who carried the day in Stonington.

Sousa earned medalist honors with an even-par 36 while Rawson was just one stroke behind to lead the Centaurs to the wins over the Bears and Bobcats.

Woodstock Academy had started the week with a 5-2 loss to East Lyme.

The Centaurs got wins at the bookends as Rawson shot a 40 at the Old Lyme Country Club from the top of the Centaurs lineup and Nick Sivertsen added a win from the fifth slot with a 45.

It was not enough, however, to keep East Lyme from continuing its undefeated ways.

The Centaurs bounced back on Wednesday at the Raceway Golf Course in Thompson with a 7-0 win over Tourtellotte.

Rawson and Sousa led Woodstock Academy with a four-over par 40 while O’Connor was five strokes back of that.

“I am very pleased with the week.  Regardless of the relatively close loss at East Lyme, the team showed tremendous growth, not only in their level of play on the course but they also seemed to have reached a new level of maturity and understanding the mental process of keeping in themselves and focusing on the shot and the ultimate team goal,” Garceau said.