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Greyhounds making strides on the links

NAUGATUCK — The Naugatuck golf team is on the upswing.

The Greyhounds picked up a big, 191-245, win over Crosby at East Mountain in Waterbury on Tuesday to improve to 3-5. The victory propelled the Greyhounds into a qualifying spot for the NVL tournament.

“We had three guys in the 40s,” head coach Bob Clark said.

Freshman Nick Karas was the medalist for the match, shooting a 45. Kody Butler and Jake Alcorace both shot in the 40s as well, with scores of 46 and 47 respectively. PJ Murphy rounded out the scoring for Naugy with a 53

“Nick helped save our season,” Clark said. “I am very proud of how he has been working in practice.”

The win over Crosby came after a rough outing May 7 at the Woodland Invitational at Oxford Greens. The Greyhounds shot a 435 and finished near the bottom of the 17-team field.

“It wasn’t pretty,” Clark said. “The poor outing wasn’t due to a lack of effort. Sometimes we try too hard. We need to just go out there and relax.”

Clark added, “Three of the four players we took had never played an 18-hole tournament before, but we gained valuable experience and it showed at Crosby.”

The rough outing paid dividends for the ‘Hounds as they put up their best score of the season versus Crosby. The 195 score posted versus Crosby was 53 strokes lower than what Naugy shot in their first match of the year about a month ago.

“To improve 53 strokes in such a short amount of time is unheard of,” Clark said. “We still have a ways to go but, we have grown leaps and bounds in the past month. We are definitely headed in the right direction.”

There is still room to grow for the Greyhounds.

“What we really need to work on is learning to play competitive golf. In the past our guys have been mostly summer golfers. We need to get more tournament experience to build consistency in our scores,” Clark said. “We leave strokes out there in the scoring area (100 yards and in). Some of the kids said they could have had three to eight fewer strokes if we could tighten our play in that area up some more.”

The Greyhounds will have an opportunity to build on their progress in the next week, which is shaping up to be a busy one. The ‘Hounds are scheduled to tee off against Torrington on May 18, Wilby on May 20 and Wolcott May 21.