Four of the nine high schoolers representing Nassau at the state Boys Golf Championships will be from the North Shore, following a strong showing and a Manhasset victory in the Nassau County Boys High School Golf Tournament.
Adam Xiao, a junior from Manhasset and now a three-time county champion, scored 141 total between two games, making him the top scorer among over 30 boys at the county tournament. One of his teammates, Chris Thompson, was second with 145 strokes.
Manhasset’s team scored 768 to dethrone last year’s champion, Friends Academy, which scored 803 this year. And, because Xiao and Thompson were among the top nine scorers, they will both advance to the state tournament.
“Our boys golf program is, I would say, outstanding,” Jim Amen, the director of physical education, athletics and health services for the Manhasset schools, said in an interview. “I’ve only been here five years, but we have some very good golfers, a very good coach, so it’s not surprising that we have a good golf team.”
Raymond Gresalfi, a junior from Great Neck South also advancing to the state tournament after scoring 150, said he was tied in 12th after the first round. But with only 71 strokes in the next round, he hit the top nine.
“It’s different in that way where you need to handle your emotions and go through the game with more of your mind and not just your body,” Gresalfi said.
And for now, Gresalfi said he intends to take some time off before working on his long drives with his coach and “starting to fine tune my game.”
Tim Na, who attends Sewanhaka High School, meanwhile had 153 strokes and will also be advancing to the state tournament, which will be held at Cornell University on Sunday and Monday.
The county golf tournament featured over 30 players from across the North Shore and Nassau County. Among them were students from Herricks, Manhasset, Great Neck, Port Washington, Roslyn and Sewanhaka.
The other five students advancing to the state tournament to represent Nassau are Christian DelVecchio of Friends Academy, who scored the third best overall at 146, Cold Spring Harbor’s Max Van Son with 147 strokes, Locust Valley’s John Kasday, who had 151 strokes, Saurav Bhasin of Plainview, with 154 strokes, and Gordon Gerstner of Long Beach, with 154 strokes.
Amen also made note of the Nassau County Girls Golf Girls Championship, where Lauren Chen of Manhasset tied for third place and will advance to the Girls State Championship beginning June 1 at the Bethpage Yellow course.
Chen will be joined by county tournament winner Malini Rudra of Syosset, the Jericho sister duo of Lauren and Emilie Guo, Arushi Gahlaut of Syossett, Megan Meehan from Locust Valley, Lindsey Golden of North Shore and Kate Pagano, who is from Massapequa.
Keena Yin of the Great Neck was one stroke too high to serve as one of three alternate players for the state tournament, with 186 strokes, but secured an honorable mention.
Other honorable mentions include Madeline Clinton of Manhasset and Sophia Gresalfi and Cheryl Chan, both from the Great Neck schools.