Coach Geoff Converse reflects on the “best-ever season” for the St. John Paul II School Golf Team.
The accolades are mounting for what has been the most successful campaign in St. John Paul II School’s 15-year golf history.
What had been the winningest year in Lions history, ended with a second-place finish in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Division 3 State final played at Sterling National Country Club. The Lions finished a mere one shot behind defending champion Weston, 232-233.
The final was played in rainy, cold, blustery conditions after the Division 1 and 2 championships – all being held within 30 miles of Sterling – were postponed.
The highlight of the day was an incredible story of overcoming adversity at the start of the final to claiming the title of “Best in The Commonwealth” by senior tri-captain Jack Carstensen.
Carstensen triple-bogeyed the opening hole and then turned the focus meter to high and completed the remaining 17 holes on the rain-soaked, frigid layout in even-par to shoot a 3-over-par 74 and edge defending champion Zach Pelzar of Weston, 74-75 for the D-3 individual title.
This is the greatest accomplishment in JP II golf history.
Meanwhile, the rest of the team slogged its way around the rain-soaked course. However, the Lions threw a big-time scare into Weston, which many had predicted would cruise to a repeat victory.
Tri-Captain Matt Curley posted an 82, the team’s other tri-captain, Timmy Adams, chipped in with an 83, and sophomore Chris Heywood added an 84, which constituted the four scores out of the Lions six competitors (the other two players were Sam Scioletti (90) and Drew Richards (94)).
Add in all the other successes of the season – a 19-1 overall record, a 10-0 Cape & Islands League Lighthouse Division title (the Lions’ fourth consecutive crown) and winning the Sectional qualifier at Wianno Golf Club.
St. John Paul II also basks in the limelight of receiving many league post-season honors with four all-stars (Carstensen, Adams, Curley and Scioletti, along with Heywood being tabbed as an honorable mention) along with the league co-MVP – again Carstensen, for the second consecutive year.
Add in Adams’ outstanding effort to tie Carstensen in the Sectional qualifier as co-medalist and it is a microcosm of how deep this year’s JPII team truly was.
Post-season team awards saw Carstensen named the team MVP, Adams garnering the “Unsung Hero Award” and Heywood collecting the “Most Improved Player.” honor.