The East Hampton High School golf team was to have played for at least a share of the league championship at Westhampton Beach Tuesday — an outcome made possible by East Hampton’s defeat of the former front-runner, Southampton, at the South Fork Country Club in Amagansett on Oct. 9.
“Our number-one [Matt Griffiths, a senior] and number-two [Turner Foster, a seventh grader] had lost by a total of 12 strokes at Southampton’s place,” Claude Beudert, East Hampton’s coach, said Tuesday morning, “so we were hoping our guys could get closer, and they did. Matt defeated Southampton’s number-one, Matt Kreymborg, by seven shots, and Turner tied Christian Oakley at two, so that put us up by seven strokes right there.”
In the other matches, Beudert said Stephen Kane, a sophomore who plays three for the Bonackers, defeated Southampton’s Eddie McLaughlin by four strokes. (Kane had lost by two to McLaughlin at Southampton); Josue Palacios, a junior, lost by three shots at four to Matt Morgan; Regis O’Neil, a sophomore, lost by one to Tom Fulham, and, at six, East Hampton’s other seventh grader, Nathan Wright, lost by five to Cole Farnam.
Thus “we won three and a half points and lost two and a half in match play, and won the three points given to the team with the lowest overall score by nine strokes.”
As of Tuesday, Beudert’s team was 8-1 with the aforementioned match at Westhampton yet to play, while Southampton was at 7-1 with two to go, one of them with Pierson-Bridgehampton, a good team that Beudert said “we picked off early in the season.”
East Hampton defeated Westhampton at South Fork earlier this fall, but there was no guarantee, Beudert said, that the Bonackers would win at Westhampton. “It’s hard to win on the road,” he said, recalling that a loss in the last match of last season at Westhampton had dropped East Hampton, which had enjoyed a long run of league championships, into third place. The Bonackers recovered in the spring, however, winning their fifth division title in a row at the county tournament at Indian Island in Riverhead.
“I think that win in the spring gave these kids some confidence,” said the coach. “We’re thrilled we’re competing.”
The team has been practicing at the Maidstone Club (where Foster’s father, Eden, is the head pro) and at South Fork, whose greenskeeper, said Beudert, “was nice enough to keep the pins in the same position for two straight days — the day before our match with Southampton and the day of.”
East Hampton’s junior varsity, coached by Ralph Naglieri, went 8-1 this fall, Beudert said in signing off.