Pitch Riley figured his local knowledge at Tedesco Country Club would bode well for him during yesterday’s annual Northeastern Conference Golf Open.
That theory proved correct — but not without a fight to the finish from Danvers’ Wes Milbury.
Both Riley and Milbury shot 4-over par 74s yesterday, forcing the NEC Open’s first-ever sudden death playoff. There, Riley putted in for bogey to win the hole and the match.
”I’ve played tons of rounds on the front nine here at Tedesco during my four years here and that definitely helped,” said Riley, a 17-year old Marblehead High senior who holds a 4.5 handicap. “We also played a good practice round on the back nine yesterday, which is a lot harder than the front nine, and that helped, too.
”Knowing the speed of the greens was my biggest advantage,” Riley added. “They were super quick today, like they have been all year, and a lot of guys had trouble with it. I was mentally prepared.”
What he couldn’t have been prepared for was the charge that the 15-year-old Milbury put on over the final 10 holes.
Milbury, a Danvers High sophomore who had never played Tedesco’s back nine, he stood at 5-over par after 8 holes before proceeding to birdie 9, 10, 11, 13 and 15, sandwiched around pars on 12 and 14. His mark on the 11th was probably his prettiest shot; on a short par-4 with an elevated green, Milbury hit a pitching wedge to within three feet of the hole for his birdie.
”Pitch and I have played against each other a lot; he was my only two losses during the season,” said Milbury, a 3.7 handicap out of Ferncroft. “I knew he was an excellent match player.”
Riley didn’t think anyone was close after his 1-over par 35 on the front nine, but started hearing about Milbury’s exploits over the final nine holes.
”He was on fire,” said Riley. “I knew he had his A-game too and that he’s a great player. At that point, every stroke would count right down to the end.”
Milbury’s Danvers High teammate, sophomore Mike Plansky, had a terrific round with a 76, good for third place.
Peabody’s Nolan Franey took fifth place with a 78, while Marblehead’s Owen Picariello was seventh with a 79. Shamus Desmond (81) was Beverly’s top finisher in eighth place, while teammate Josh Cairns (82) tied Swampscott’s Anthony Springthorpe for ninth place with an 82. Kyle Doherty was Salem’s top performer with a 90.
St. JOhn’s Prep 313, Concord-Carlisle 315: Sophomore Steven Dilisio’s one-over round of 36 helped the Eagles edge the previously unbeaten hosts at Concord Country Club. Jeff O’Connor and Justin Serowik each shot 38 and Max Burt added a 39 for the Prep (15-2).
Swampscott 2, Peabody 0: Christina King and Tessa Bean had goals for the Big Blue (10-2-2) and Danielle Mayblyum earned an assist. Nora Walker made two saves in goal for the shutout, while Annie Kane also had a terrific outing.
Bishop Fenwick 6, St. Mary’s 0: Sophomore Merry Harrington and junior Emily Rocker combined for the shutout in goal as Fenwick punched its way into the state tournament with the win. Victoria Caruso and Abbey Rocker each had two goals for the Crusaders (8-5-2) while Danielle Deltorto and Alley Charette had single tallies.
Beverly 6, Salem 2: Caitlin Harty (five goals, assist) and Casey Cook (goal, five assists) connected a half-dozen times as Beverly improved to 11-3-2. The Witches (8-6-1) made it 3-2 in the second half on goals by Alix Bryant and Deema Hijleh before the Panthers pulled away.
Swampscott 5, Gloucester 0: The Big Blue bumped their record to 7-4-4 behind goals from Sammy Maher, Leah Dawley, Meghan Hartman, Jamie Caponigro and Megan Morocco. Senior Lauren Sullivan anchored the Swampscott defense.
Danvers 4, Winthrop 0: The Falcons (9-4-1) qualified for the state tournament for the 23rd straight year with the win. Shannon Pohle scored two goals and had an assist while Kylie Plaza and Delaney Zecha also scored. Devan Walsh and Nicole White had assists and Kasey Nestor played an impressive, aggressive game in the back. Amanda Vacke and Leah Ciampa shared the shutout.
Peabody 7, Lynn English 0: Erika Nelson had a hat trick for the second straight game and senior captain Madison Doherty added a hat trick and three assists as the Tanners (10-1-2) extended their unbeaten streak to 12 games with their 10th shutout. Caroline Colbert had a pair of assists for Peabody and Brianna Gaynor had one helper.
Bishop Fenwick 3, Matignon 0: The Crusaders (13-1) won 25-9, 25-9, 25-19 behind excellent performances by setters Tessa McLaughlin and Julie Ywuc, who combined for 40 assists. Melissa McKenzie added eight kills and two blocks for Fenwick and Alexis Bedard had four kills.
North Shore Tech/Essex Aggie 3, Northeast 0: The Hawks (5-10) prevailed 28-26, 25-9, 25-15 as Courtney Remson hit on 14 of her 18 serves with six aces and added two kills. Casey Harris had seven aces and five kills for the winners and Isabelle Camacho had three aces and six kills.
Beverly 3, Winthrop 0: Alex Kelliher had five kills, Ally Cabral added a pair of kills and Bridget Keaton had three to help the Panthers win 25-23, 25-15, 25-17.
Beverly 1, Salem 1: Sophomore Peter Coletti tied the game for Beverly (8-6-1) with a second half tally to knot things up. Outside mid Elias Crandell had a solid game for the hosts. Salem’s goal was a first half strike by Nathan Russell, while Matt Muse and Connor Duncan had strong all-around games for the Witches (1-8-4).
Bishop Fenwick 2, St. Mary’s 1: Rishad Desilva scored the opening goal for Bishop Fenwick (6-6-5) and then assisted on Iftimy Arapi’s marker later in the first half. Alex Baker assisted DeSilva’s goal and had a solid all-around game while keeper Ryan Trott and center midfielder Greg Enos also played well for the Crusaders.
Waring 6, Newman Prep 1: Aiden Wood recorded a hat trick for Waring (8-0-1) with Matt Lyman adding a pair of markers and Alex Mitchell also scoring a goal.
Peabody 5, Lynn English 1: The Tanners (9-0-5) remained unbeaten on the strength of two goals by Ben Manoogian. C.J. Alimonte and Thomas Guma each had a goal and an assist, Leo D’Oliveira also scored and Jake Silva and Kyle Gilbert had one assist each. Defenders Alex Tisi, Nick Bettencourt and Connor Bombaci also played well for Peabody.
Danvers 5, Winthrop 3: Outside mid Ryan Kelleher had one of his best game of the year with three assists and the Falcons (8-1-5) rallied to win after trailing early. Nikolay Sakhin, Caio Silva, Jackson McPherson and Zach Noring had goals for Danvers and Chris Davis had a goal and one assist.
COLLEGE FIELD HOCKEY
ST. JOSEPH’S 2, SALEM STATE 0: Despite controlling large chunks of play, the host Vikings (6-6) couldn’t find the back of the net. Beverly native Kathryn Hart rang a shot off the St. Joseph’s post for Salem State’s best scoring chance.
Endicott 3, St. Anselm 2: Senior Callie Dolan had 25 kills, one fewer than the Gulls’ one-game school record, to help her team beat a Division 2 opponent 22-25, 25-20, 25-20, 20-25, 15-12. Mackenzie Guerre added 10 kills for Endicott (15-12) and Alleigh Vandemerkt totaled 50 assists.
SUFFolk 3, Gordon 0: The Fighting Scots dipped to 9-13 on the season in a non-league sweep on the road.