The Goochland Bulldogs golf team has faced adversity early and often this season, but it has yet to get in their way.
The team, which had no seniors on the roster last year, brings in an experienced, respected group that has kicked off its season with notable close matches. In those matches, they’ve shown resiliency in close game situations. That was evidenced by strong play in two different matches last week, first beating Charlottesville after regulation with a 5-foot putt from junior Will Gravely on the first playoff hole on Tuesday, Aug. 23 and later tying with Monticello in a matchup two days later, 171-171.
Gravely led the way in both contests, scoring a low score of 37 along with junior Luke Manno versus Charlottesville at the Meadow Creek Golf Course and later leading the team with a low score of 38 against Monticello at the Hermitage Country Club. Sophomore Michael Monahan had a strong score of 41 in the Charlottesville win, while senior Gintas Putinas added a score of 45 against Monticello.
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Head coach Knox Milligan says the team’s depth has been a focal point early, noting 10 different golfers as guys he’s confident in contributing to the team’s success.
This depth has allowed him to shuffle his lineups and mix and match different athletes together to see who works well together out on the course.
“I’m not necessarily pairing up the 1 and 2, then the 3 and 4 players,” Milligan said.
Seeing positive efforts from guys like Gravely, Manno, Putinas and junior Henry Vazales at different times throughout the early parts of the season have helped Milligan get a feel for who could step up when it comes time for postseason play.
“The team I want to go into postseason play with will be the players who not only are capable of posting a good score, but gel together as a team the best,” Milligan said. “In years past, picking the top six players was pretty easy. This year, and hopefully in the years to come, it has been a welcomed challenge.”