The Springfield College men’s golf team definitely made their trip to Litchfield, N.H. worthwhile.
The Pride won the New England College conference championship this past weekend at Passaconaway Country Club. Sophomore Adam Ziewacz received first place overall to help the Pride beat out Babson College by two strokes.
With the victory, the team has advanced to their first NCAA tournament in over 40 years.
Ziewacz earned his first place and medalist honors after posting a pair of 73’s for the two-day tournament. The sophomore from Simsbury, Conn. also added NECC Rookie of the Year honors to his recent accolades. He has been putting in solid performances in the past few tournaments, but this was definitely a turning point in his career.
“I am definitely happy with the way I played, and this is my motivation going forward,” Ziewacz said.
Coach Joe Eadie is proud of the way his team has been performing lately.
“It wasn’t a surprise to me that Adam played well he has been playing like this all year,” Eadie said.
It wasn’t just Ziewacz who had a great performance. His teammates gathered around him to post solid scores of their own. Senior Tim Vollaro was a huge surprise and a crucial boost for the team. Being in his first tournament appearance, Vollaro was second on the team and sixth overall with scores of 76 and 78 respectively.
“Tim played well at even par, and for him to go out in the biggest tournament and play like that was definitely the deciding factor,” Eadie added.
Vollaro can use this success as a key piece of what is to come.
“I am happy with how I played and mostly happy that I helped out the team,” Vollaro said.
Graduate student Tom Sangeloty and senior Chris Vincent added to their team’s success as well. Vincent finished with a 79 and 78, while Sangeloty chipped in with an 81 and 79.
“Vincent and Sangeloty are great leaders and a big reason why we have been playing so well,” said Eadie.
“I felt that I played well and played a lot stronger on Sunday. We have shown that we can win a lot of tournaments,” said Vincent.
Sangeloty was also pleased with how he and his team faired at Passaconaway.
“I didn’t play as [well] as I wanted to, but I played for the team. This win is the turning point for our team,” Sangeloty added.
Senior Kyle DiFranco had a solid effort to contribute to his team, with an 80 and 76. His leadership is highly valued and much needed down the road.
“This win was a team effort and a huge win for us,” said DiFranco. “Adam played lights out and Tim was big for us as well.”
There are no captains on the team and Eadie has been using this strategy in his 19 years as the Pride’s coach. This may seem unorthodox and confusing to some, while others see it as an opportunity for the team to lead each other in their own way.
Eadie has made it clear that “everyone is a captain.” His philosophy is not new to the players, and they have been successful this way.
The future for the Pride is very promising with all of the success they have been having as of late. Ziewacz has made it clear that he is a true competitor. Vollaro has made people realize what one weekend and one tournament can do to your athletic career.Competitors around him will be looking out for him from now on. Ziewacz has made a name for himself, and is a true force on the course.
The Pride have been playing very consistent golf the past few tournaments. Their victory last weekend has opened up a gap on their potential. They hold their own future.
They are taking the week off to prepare for the ECAC’Sson the Oct. 20 at Crumpin Fox in Bernardston, Mass. The ECAC’s are another opportunity to show just how strong the Pride are.
The New England Championships are the week after and are the last tournament on the schedule. Taking it one tournament at a time is the Pride’s best recipe for success.