“The John Jay varsity golf team and I were looking forward with great anticipation to this spring season,” head coach Artie Blank said. “Last year, the team finished second in the section. With 10 out of 11 golfers returning, including three All-Section and one All-State golfer, we were poised to compete for a sectional title.”
Blank continued, “We have six seniors on the team, three have been on the team since they were freshman and were part of two league championships. They are a special group of athletes who are very dedicated to their craft. They led by example and helped create a culture that will always be part of our program.”
The six seniors are Chris Walsh, Joseph Sanz, Robbie Skriloff, Nick Petrella, Lars Carlson and Gunnar Carlson.
Blank added, “Although they were not able to compete this season, the team has focused its energy on staying healthy, spending time with family and schoolwork, while remaining positive about the future.”
Chris Walsh was an All-Section and All- State choice in 2019.
A four-year varsity member, his favorite pre-match ritual was chipping competitions with his teammates.
His most memorable shot was an eagle on hole 14 at first round of sectionals, while his favorite memory was of “Mike McKeon trying to hit it off the fringe on the putting green.”
Walsh is heading to the University of Michigan.
Joseph Sanz, also a four-year player, was an All-Section choice last spring.
Sandwiches from Empire Bagels on the bus going to away matches was his favorite ritual, while his hole-in-one in the first round of tryouts on hole 5 at Richter Park Golf Course was his top shot. He will always remember the 2019 sectional tournament, he said. Sanze plans to attend Lafayette College, with his sights set on attending law school.
His advice for younger players: “Love the process, trust yourself that you prepared to play well. Golf is a mental game more than a physical one.”
Another four-year player and 2019 All-Section honoree is Robbie Skriloff.
His top pre-match ritual is “getting food and eating it on the way to away matches.”
Skriloff’s most memorable shot is “almost getting a hole-in-one on hole 7 at Waccabuc.”
He will join Chris Walsh at Michigan next fall.
Nick Petrella has been a golf team member for three years. He found competing in golf to be a bit more relaxing than spending winter turning aside shots in goal for the Jay hockey team.
Petrella’s favorite pre-match ritual was warming up on the putting green with teammates. His most memorable shot was coming 2-inches short of a hole-in-one on the ninth hole at Waccabuc. Petrella, who will attend Lehigh University, also enjoyed heading to Red Rooster with the team after a win.
A hockey teammate of Petrella, Lars Carlson played golf for two seasons.
Carlson liked to eat a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich on the bus heading to matches, and said his most memorable shot was sinking a 20-foot birdie putt on hole 9 at Waccabuc.
He is heading to the College of Charleston.
Carlson’s advice for younger players: “Play as much as you can and work as hard as possible. “
His twin brother, Gunnar, is also a two-year varsity member who listed his eagle on hole 2 at the Anglebrook Golf Club as his most memorable shot.
Gunnar will join Lars at the College of Charleston.