The medalists from Montclair High’s boys crew team at Saturday’s Garden State Championships.
Courtesy Montclair High School Golf Team

by Andrew Garda

garda@montclairlocal.news

Much like the US Postal Service, the Montclair High School golf team doesn’t let a little weather get in their way. Despite with all the rain and cold on Monday afternoon, the golfers still hit the links against Newark Academy and beat them 164-174.

The weather was much like that — cold, wet and unforgiving — when the Mounties finished in with a third place at the Essex County Tournament a few weeks back.

“Seton Hall Prep won,” head coach Kenneth Schnitzer said in a phone interview this week. “They beat us by nine strokes and we tied with Livingston for second place, but they beat us on the tie breaker. Little disheartening. Tough day, cold, not quite as wet [as Monday] but cold and windy.”

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Despite a disappointing finish in the counties, MHS is feeling pretty good about how the season has gone so far, including a win in a tiple match on Tuesday, where they outshot Montclair Kimberly Academy and Glen Ridge, 170 to 174 and 193.

“Our one loss in conference is to Seton Hall, and we lost to them last Monday, the 23,” Schnitzer said. “That made us 5-1 in the conference.”

After beating Newark Academy, the Mounties are 6-1 and rolling as they build on last season’s success.

For Schnitzer, the senior leadership has been important in dealing with the up and down nature of the sport.

“I named my captains last year at the banquet and the two seniors I picked, I knew had their leadership qualities,” Schnitzer said. “Miles Bylin and Annette Lee, they’re both individuals the team looks up to.”

Schnitzer said that Lee has been especially helpful, as the team added a second girl to the squad this year.

“She’s a freshman, and Annette has been really good at just guiding her along, being a mentor.”

Other golfers have stepped up as well.

“Max Sorger has been a monster on the course,” Schnitzer said. “He had a rough day against Seton Hall and he came back and he shot three under par against Millburn last Thursday, with a 33. Jack Nevins has been playing really well. Miles, Annette, and Matt Miller — a junior — have also been playing very well,”

Ultimately, though, Schnitzer said that the strength of this team is how they support each other.

“Nobody is going to have a perfect round every day. It’d be nice if it happened, but it’s not going to. But there’s never been a situation where somebody doesn’t pick somebody else up.”

Now as the Mounties head towards the end of the season, Schnitzer said they will focus on state sectionals and doing it together.

“We’re going to qualify for state sectionals, which will be in two weeks,” he said. “Our goal is to get into the top two and go to Tournamant of Champions as a team.”