WAVERLY — The Abington Heights boys golf team has experienced a lot of success in Lackawanna League play the past few seasons.
With the return of all six starters, the Comets hope to make an impact at the district and state levels this year.
Seniors Connor Kelleher, Troy Kelleher and Nick Sebastianelli, and juniors Will Brown, Daniel Flickinger and Andrew Kirtley helped Abington Heights win all 14 league matches last year and the first six this season.
Troy Kelleher and Sebastianelli each have six individual wins and contributed to six better-ball wins, Connor Kelleher and Brown each have five individual wins and contributed to five better-ball wins, Daniel Flickinger has three individual wins and contributed to four better-ball wins, Kirtley has two individual wins and earned two splits, and also contributed to three better-ball wins. Junior Bryce Reiner along with freshmen Collin Jenkins and James Flickinger each have an individual win and contributed to a better-ball win.
Troy Kelleher won the Lackawanna County Junior Amateur and Lackawanna County Amateur golf tournaments prior to the start of high school matches and has stayed sharp throughout the beginning of the season.
“Everybody practices three-and-four-foot putts and can make eight out of 10 all the time,” Abington Heights head coach Frank Summa said. “Troy is at a different level of the game; he’s in that category with 10 and 12 footers. He’s focused on his game and he’s a competitor.”
Abington Heights lost to Crestwood by seven strokes in the District 2 Class 3A championship match last season and Summa believes the team is eager to win the district title this year.
“Expectations are high are there is a little chip on their shoulder,” Summa said. “We were a little disappointed, but hats off to Crestwood; they played well and we didn’t have our A-game.”
Troy Kelleher feels the talent up and down the lineup will give the Comets an advantage in the postseason.
“We’re deep, one to six, everybody can shoot even-par on this team, so that helps,” he said. “We definitely want to make it to states. Our seniors haven’t been there yet, so we definitely want to get there.”
Summa credits the determination of the players for the team’s continued success.
“When they’re off and don’t have a good round, you’ll see them back at the range working on their shots,” he said.
While the Comets have lofty goals this season, Summa is also confident about the future of the program.
“We have a few freshmen (Jenkins, James Flickinger, Bryce Florey and Mike Marion) who made the team and were quite impressive in tryouts,” he said.
Reach Robert Tomkavage at 570-704-3941 or on Twitter @rtomkavage.