Cougars Finish Ahead of Schedule

            The Old Colony Regional Vocational-Technical High School golf team had 10 matches slated for the Fall II season, all held in April. So, on top of the fall sport being played at the start of spring, the Cougars had a jam-packed, four-week schedule. Combine that with the fact that Old Colony’s top six golfers were all sophomores — albeit a promising group for the future — and it looked like the Fall II season would be a learning experience for the Cougars above all else.

            Yet they now head into the offseason having won each of their regular season matches and finishing third in the Mayflower Athletic Conference tournament, which only featured two golfers per team this season instead of a full roster of six.

            “I didn’t anticipate this,” Old Colony golf coach Kathy Peterson said. “I knew the top two would be set. But the rest of the team, I wasn’t sure how much they had played in the offseason leading up. Then when you look at some days (this season), we had times where everybody shot (nine-hole rounds) under 50.”

            Peterson even recalled one match where her No. 6 golfer, Will Harrop, matched Old Colony’s No. 1 golfer, Luke Butler, with 42 strokes. In between the two were Brady Weglowski, Ty Dumas, Michael Niemi, and Derek Fortunato, who all contributed to wins on multiple occasions throughout the season.

            “It was just fun to watch their excitement,” she said. “They work hard. I couldn’t ask for nicer kids. Everything is ‘please’ and ‘thank you, Coach.’ You don’t always get that. Even with the top two kids, there’s no ego.”

            While their skill will help them build on their success from April when high school golf season comes around again at the start of the 2021-22 academic year, the Cougars’ mental approach to the game will also play a big part with the lofty expectations that will follow their undefeated 2021 Fall II season.

            “We talk about playing hole by hole, shot by shot,” Peterson said. “Anybody who golfs, you’re going to have good and bad days…. We talk about mental toughness and how they approach their shots, adjusting club selection if they’re having a bad day because they’re playing to win a hole in match play, not total score.

            “I’ll focus more on navigating match plays and not as much total scores, which is what they get hung up on. I’m also hoping to work on their chipping and putting. We’ll try to perfect that part of their game because most of them are good out of the tee box.

Old Rochester Regional Football

            Despite all the ups and downs they’ve endured this season, the Bulldogs have a chance to become South Coast Conference Blue Division champions. Faced with a rematch against the same Dighton-Rehoboth squad that blew them out to start the Fall II season, ORR turned the tables when it counted most on May 1. Late in the game, ORR quarterback Ryon Thomas connected with Ryan Quinlan to bring the Bulldogs within one point of tying the game. The Bulldogs elected to go for the two-point conversion, and Thomas delivered, converting to secure a 36-35 SCC semifinal win.

            ORR gets back to work Saturday, May 8, for their final game of the season — a 6:00 pm meeting with Apponequet for the SCC Blue Division title.

Old Colony Football

            After it took some time to earn their first win of the season, the Cougars managed to finish off their season with back-to-back wins. Coming off a hard-fought 20-18 win against Upper Cape on April 23, Old Colony faced a Diman Vocational squad in a game that was supposed to be played earlier in the season. The Bengals had to quarantine midseason, leaving the Cougars with back-to-back bye weeks.

            When the Cougars finally got the chance to face Diman on April 30, they made sure to take care of business. Ryan McGuiggan, the hero of the win against Upper Cape, rushed for 72 yards and two touchdowns on 17 attempts. The Old Colony running back also caught three passes from his brother Matt McGuiggan for 105 yards.

            Shawn Markham caught Matt McGuiggan’s three other competitions for 98 yards and two touchdowns. Thomas Stanton had 19 rushing attempts and led the Cougars with 173 yards on the ground, 50 of which came on his fourth-quarter touchdown run.

Sports Roundup

By Nick Friar

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