Thursday, April 18, 2013

The Gazette (Hawthorne Edition)

NORTH HALEDON — The Eastern Christian High School golf team has started out strong for the 2013 season, but knows the toughest is yet to come.

The Eagles were 4-0 at the end of last week, but had North Jersey Interscholastic Conference (NJIC) Division 1 favorite Glen Rock on Tuesday (after press deadline).

Eastern Christian had already defeated four teams from the division in North Arlington, Leonia, Hawthorne and Hasbrouck Heights.

Eagles head coach Mike Quigley is just looking to “compete” against Glen Rock and also to battle against Passaic County‘s best in the county tournament near the end of the season.

“The kids are a little excited and they just want to be out there and compete,” said Quigley last weekend before the Glen Rock match.

For 2013 the Eagles are led by senior Matt Van Grouw, who    finished second in the Passaic County Tournament last season and his best nine-round match was a 39 so far.

“He’s a solid golfer and has a world of potential,” said Quigley. “I would say that he is a little more focused on improving with his wedge. He’s a long hitter and pretty accurate with the putter.”

Van Grouw, who hit a 79 at the county tournament in 2012 and was first team All Passaic County, is planning to attend the University of Coastal Carolina. Quigley is trying to coax him into going out for the Coastal Carolina golf team.

After Van Grouw there is junior Connor Milkamp as the number two golfer.

“He’s a hard worker,” said Quigley about Milkamp, who scored an 89 at the county tournament in 2012 and was an All    Passaic second team member. “He’s great with the three wood. He can hit the ball longer than guys with a driver. He is probably our best putter.”

After Van Grouw and Milkamp, the Eagles third and fourth golfers are senior Ryan Vander Plaat and junior Kyle Dorsey.