The St. Joseph’s Catholic Academy boys’ golf team picked up the school’s first boys’ District 6 championship in any sport Thursday afternoon, wrapping up the Class 2A team title.
Behind Jack Mangene’s 10-over 154 to finish in second place, the Wolves had a two-day 675 team total — 10 strokes better than team runner-up Bishop McCort.
“The first thing when we got into the van this morning, Jack asked the guys what our lead was,” coach Chad Walsh said of his team, which was eight strokes ahead after Wednesday’s opening round. “They all said it was 0-0. They all played like it was 0-0.”
The win sends the Wolves to a PIAA Sub-Regional at Iron Masters Country Club on Oct. 12 to take on District 5 champion Rockwood. Mangene also qualified for the PIAA West Regional individual tournament at Tom’s Run Golf Club in Blairsville on Oct. 16.
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Tyrone’s Andrew Ferguson paced the field at 7-over 151, playing in the final group with Mangene and Luke Tercek of McCort. Mangene was a stroke behind Ferguson at 1-over after the opening round, but strong winds on Scotch Valley Country Club’s 6,428-yard course led to high final-round scores, including Mangene’s 81.
The Wolves’ Matt Steyers carded a 168 for ninth — missing the PIAA individual regional field by one stroke and one place. RJ Marsh added a 179.
Philipsburg-Osceola’s Brandon Singer fired a 180 to place 20th.
Altoona won the Class 3A title at 659, paced by medalist Derek McAlkich’s 158, while State College was second at 702. Little Lion Ryan Battista finished fifth at 173, and Matt Tomczuk was seventh at 183.
The only other district team championship won by St. Joseph’s was earned by the girls’ cross country team last season, and Garrett Bastardi was an individual PIAA golf qualifier in 2013 and 2014.
“They were definitely not jumping around or getting excited on the course,” Walsh said. “They were steady. They were not playing like they were expecting this, but they knew it was not out of the realm of possibility. They’re a confident group.”