The 2020-2021 school year has been rocked by a surfeit of uncertainties, but the KO golf team has certainly made the most out of their time on the links. Each golfer worked diligently to improve their skills and lower their scores while keeping a healthy balance of competitiveness and fun in every practice.
As a result of the ongoing pandemic and its restrictions, the Wyverns were limited to just two matches, where they played nine holes. The format used in the first match was a cumulative, tallied team score with the winning team having fewer total strokes than the other. The second match was an individual head-to-head match play configuration, identical to the format that the KO tennis teams play under.
The squad this year was much larger than years past because there were no cuts, and a junior varsity team wasn’t put together. Among those were a handful of seasoned veterans that returned this season after last year’s hiatus, including senior Captain Henry Krieble, who was proud of the team’s resilience. “The season went pretty well for the team overall,” Krieble said. “We always remained positive.”
On Monday, April 12, a select few from the team traveled to New Haven Country Club to take on Hamden Hall. The Hornets were a very talented and experienced squad, defeating the Wyverns 177-230. Impressively, Hamden Hall shot seven over par collectively from their five golfers, an average of about one and a half strokes over par for each. KO was led by freshman standout Cole Banning who carded a solid three over par 37. Right behind him were Krieble and junior Teddy Keegan, who shot scores of 38 and 39 respectively.
In the team’s final match of the season on May 7, KO traveled to Putnam, Conn., to play the beautiful course at Connecticut National Golf Club against Marianapolis Prep. The Wyverns swept the Golden Knights 5-0 in a spectacular win highlighted by Krieble’s 3 and 1 victory at #1. Keegan and senior Kyle Frankel cruised to 3 and 2 wins in their matches, senior Cohl D’Addabbo closed out his match 2 and 1, and Banning triumphed to a 1 up win in a close match.
Head coach Scott Dunbar was pleased with the team’s first showings since 2019, giving praise and shoutouts to multiple players. “Henry Krieble played in both matches and acquitted himself well,” Coach Dunbar said. “Cole Banning was the best underclassman on the team. He is a fine player with a good future. Cohl D’Addabbo, Kyle Frankel, and [senior] Evan Bygrave were our other seniors and were a positive influence.”
Krieble, a five-year varsity veteran, reflected on his time with the golf team and serving as the captain this past season. “What I will miss the most about KO golf are the traditions that we have as a team,” Krieble said. “I was taught the many traditions of the team by the captains at that time. Being the captain this year, [my] experience came full circle as I was able to help guide and challenge the younger players on the team.”
The seniors aren’t the only ones departing the team after their final spring seasons. Coach Dunbar is retiring at the end of the academic year after over 40 years of teaching and coaching a multitude of sports at KO. Dunbar reminisced about his time with the golf team. “Golf has always afforded me opportunities to meet and learn from a wide range of people,” Dunbar said. “I will miss the camaraderie of the game, both with my players and particularly the opposing coaches.”
Even with a less than ideal match schedule, the golf team managed to have a great season, saving their best play for the second and final match against Marianapolis Prep. We wish the seniors luck as they embark on the next chapters of their lives, along with Mr. Dunbar as he heads into retirement!