Warming up on the range before Monday’s match against Westbrook, Scarborough’s No. 1 golfer Jack Snyder inadvertently snapped the shaft on his new Titleist driver into two pieces.

Snyder, a junior, who is built more like an NFL linebacker than a high school golfer, can hit it 300-plus off the tee. Without the long stick in his bag, though, Snyder was forced to hit three-iron and he never found his groove – Westbrook’s Greg Perrault won the match point (2 and 1) and the stroke point (40-43). When Snyder’s playing partner, No. 2 Josh Flynn, lost both points to Adam Fenderson (1-up; 41-44), the Red Raiders found themselves in an early hole.

Who says golf isn’t a team game?

The rest of the Red Storm rallied around their top guys to eke out a 7-6 win. Number three Nate Boroyan beat Justin Sawyer (3 and 2; 24-52); No. 4 Nick Norton beat Kyle Sanborn (4 and 3, 43-47); and freshman Ryan Kane, playing in his first-ever varsity match, beat Ross Fletcher (2 and 1, 43-48) in the No. 6 match. Because Westbrook’s No. 5 Chris Howard beat Mark Beidleman (2-up, 46-50), the match came down to total strokes. Scarborough took the final point thanks to a score of 215-222.

“We have some very inexperienced kids out there playing for me right now,” said Westbrook coach Mark Luthe. “Everybody’s looking to play, dying to play, but we just can’t produce the numbers out there. In practice rounds we do great, but during matches, once there’s a little bit of pressure on them, we tend to hit the tanks a little bit.”

Conversely, Scarborough got a huge lift from it’s middle-of-the-packers – most notably Kane, the freshman. He played his way into the lineup for the first time by winning a qualifier in practice.

“Some matches I do pick the team, but for the most part I like to have some slots opened for kids, so that it gives them a shot to get in a varsity match,” said Scarborough coach Mike Murphy. “Ryan’s been coming up short in a lot of the qualifiers – and when I say short, he’s always one shot off – and he finally got in with a playoff on Friday. So I’m happy for him.”

Probably not as happy as Snyder and Flynn were, though.

Both golfers held early leads in their matches, but were unable to hold on. Perrault and Fenderson both made a move on the par-4 third hole. Perrault squared his match with a bogey to Snyder’s triple, while Fenderson moved to 1-down by scrambling for a par.

All four golfers made par on the 349-yard fourth hole, but the momentum began to sway in Westbrook’s direction on the fifth and sixth holes. Perrault went 1-up when he parred the par-3 fifth and Snyder bogeyed. Fenderson finally squared his match on the 411-yard sixth when he smoked his drive to 130 yards, hit the green in regulation and made par; Flynn bogeyed.

“I started to hit the ball good there. I started hitting my drives down the middle,” said Fenderson.

With his swing now slotted, Fenderson knocked his tee shot to seven feet on the par-3 seventh. He made birdie – while Flynn made bogey – and went up for the first time in the match. Perrault, meanwhile, made par to go 2-up as Snyder also bogeyed.

Perrault closed out his match by halving the par-4 eighth.

“I didn’t feel like I hit the ball that great today, but I just came out with one I guess,” he said.

The No. 2 match came down to the last hole. Fenderson and Flynn both landed their tee shots in the left rough 100 yards out, and they both knocked their approaches to roughly the same distance. Flynn, needing a birdie to square the match and grab a half point, was forced to go right at the hole. His putt burned the right edge, though, and he had to settle for par; Fenderson also parred.

“I can definitely play better,” said Flynn. “My average is a 38 here, so I did not play anywhere near how well I’ve been playing all year.”

He didn’t need to, though, and neither did the driver-less Snyder.

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