Two agents over which the Fairfield Ludlowe boys golf team had no control in shaping its FCIAC match against Trinity Catholic on Tuesday afternoon broke the Falcons' way at the H. Smith Richardson Golf Course. That combination of favorable influences played a role in Ludlowe's 173-177 win over the Crusaders.
Ludlowe coach Daniel Kleps noted how the weather was conducive for good golf for the first time all spring. What also helped the Falcons along to victory was the admission by the Trinity Catholic captains that the Crusaders were not on top of their game.
In what the Falcons could control, their play, Kleps was pleased. Above all else, Ludlowe's drives from the tees were accurate for the most part, and that set up the rest of their games on the fairways and greens.
"Off the tees, I thought we shot pretty well," Kleps said. "We were not getting into trouble off the tees. We weren't forced to make recovery shots on our second shots. We were able to hit onto the greens."
Ludlowe, which had lost its previous two matches to New Canaan and Staples was led by junior Tom Kelly, an all-conference selection last year. He was the medalist by shooting 36, the only golfer on the course to reach par. The win lifted the Falcons' overall and FCIAC records to 3-4-0.
Trinity Catholic, which had gone 0-3-1 in most recent matches, was paced by senior captain Mike Szemenyei and junior Matt Carlson, who each shot 42. Crusaders junior captain Griffin Northrop carded a 44. Trinity Catholic's overall and conference records fell to 2-5-1.
Following Kelly, who has been Ludlowe's best golfer in at least five matches this season, Kleps said, were senior captain Jack Armstrong, who shot a 45, sophomore Dane Vanderblue (46) and junior Dan Henry (46).
"He's been keeping it pretty close to par," Kleps said. "I expect him to continue to be around par as the weather continues to go in our favor."
Szemenyei and Northrop were a little frustrated by the Crusaders play, though only Evan Viscardi had a round on the course before Tuesday afternoon.
"The good thing about it (loss) is it helps your figure out what we need to work on," Szemenyei said. "As a team, we did not play well today. Don't you think we struggled a bit today?" Szemenyei asked Northrop. Northrop agreed.
"We're better than we showed," said Northrop, who said the final margin was close. "A stroke here, a stroke there. Four strokes, you can lose that in golf on one hole in no time."
Ludlowe plays McMahon on Wednesday at H. Smith Richardson, then has three more matches (Westhill, Ridgefield, Darien) before a three-way match on May 19 at home against Fairfield Warde and St. Joseph.
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Fairfield Ludlowe 173, Trinity Catholic 177 (at H. Smith Richardson Golf Course, par 36): TC--Mike Szemenyei 42, Matt Carlson 42, Griffin Northrop 44, Evan Viscardi 49; FL--Tom Kelly 36, Jack Armstrong 45, Dane Vanderblue 46, Dan Henry 46. Records: Trinity Catholic 2-5-1 overall, 2-5-1 FCIAC; Fairfield Ludlowe 3-4-0 overall, 3-4-0 FCIAC.