NEPA Sports Nation

Extended stay at PIAA golf

By Tom Robinson,

EXETER – The Crestwood and Lake-Lehman boys earned an extended stay at the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association Golf Championships with their Oct. 12 District 2-4 Subregional victories at Fox Hill Country Club.

Crestwood coach Mark Jarolen adjusted reservations for his team following the 322-360 victory over Selinsgrove in Class 3A.

Lake-Lehman routed Shamokin Lourdes Regional, 309-382, in Class 2A, securing an anticipated extra day.

“This has been the goal,” Lake-Lehman coach Tom Yoniski said. “If we didn’t make it this far, I would have been disappointed.

“From now on it, it should be gravy.”

There could be gravy to be added to what has already been a successful week for the Black Knights at Penn State.

Lake-Lehman had already established itself as a state contender before the individual golf championships began Monday. Placing three in the top eight and four in the top 25 in Class 2A boys when that tournament concluded Tuesday reinforced that status.

It is a position earned through dedication to the sport.

When Yoniski made calls late in the evening to talk to his players after their District 2 title win Oct. 11 to discuss the Subregional match, they were difficult to reach. Instead of celebrating their victory hours earlier, they could be found working on their swings on golf simulators positioned in the family barn or garage.

“That’s what they do,” Yoniski said.

The coach acknowledges occasional concern about too much time with the game and before making the trip to Penn State he was aware of the potential grind of following a two-day individual tournament with the team competition. But, he knows his players success also comes from that drive to accomplish goals like playing in the state tournament.

“It’s been their goal from the very start,” Yoniski said. “It was something I didn’t want to talk about.”

Lake-Lehman’s four individual tournament players join two Crestwood boys, two Scranton Prep girls and one North Pocono girl in playing all three days at Penn State.

Wednesday’s state team tournament has been pushed back to 9:30 a.m. or later start because of frost.

Michael Lugiano leads Lake-Lehman into the Class 2A boys tournament after placing third in the state. Brothers Cael and Eli Ropietski also medaled with top-10 finishes. Charlie Weidner joined them in the top half of the individual boys field.

Derek Johnson, who led District 2’s Class 3A boys Monday and Tuesday, and Owen Blazick are the Crestwood players who made it in both events.

State medalist Gianna Cafarella and Miranda Karoscik lead Scranton Prep, which is in Class 2A after two years in a row of finishing fifth in the state in Class 3A. They played in both of those appearances.

North Pocono’s Gwen Powell put up the best scores by a District 2 girls in the individual tournament. She leads the Lady Trojans into the Class 3A team event.

Scranton Prep and North Pocono each qualified for the state tournament with their district wins because District 4 did not have an eligible team – a district winner with a three-player score of 300 or better.

The boys tournament uses the top four scores of five players. The girls use the best three scores out of five.

After winning District 2, Crestwood and Lake-Lehman needed to get past the District 4 teams, something they accomplished with ease.

Crestwood shot 322 for the second straight day with two players shooting identical scores and two others coming within one stroke of their district team score.

Johnson, Blazick and Tommy Biscotti each shot 79 against Selinsgrove. Ray Joseph added an 85, which was good enough to equal Selinsgrove’s best score.

“Consistency was our biggest asset,” Jarolen said. “(Oct. 11) we shot 322, (Oct. 12), we shot 322. All the scores were pretty much the same.

“I like the consistency; that’s for sure.”

Eli Ropietski had the best score for the second straight day. He followed up his district score of 73 with a 74 in the subregional match.

Cael Ropietski added a 76, Weidner a 79 and Lugiano an 80 against Lourdes Regional, which did not have a player break 90.


Full subregional scores: District 2-4 subregional team golf – NEPA Sports Nation

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