Sewickley Academy boys win WPIAL Class AA title, place third in state
It was expected that senior standout Keenan Hickton would be the top performer when Sewickley Academy began its search for team honors during the 2013 WPIAL Class AA boys golf team playoffs.
Hickton did play well when he shot a 2-over-par round of 74 at the team event held at Cedarbrook Golf Course in Rostraver. But what set the tone for the Panthers last Oct. 10 was the outstanding effort recorded by Jason Li, a freshman from Cranberry, who shot a 5-over-par round of 77.
That helped the Panthers to record a team score of 398 and a 10-stroke victory margin over defending team champion Burgettstown.
"It's phenomenal," said Sewickley Academy coach Win Palmer. "We have brought freshman (to the team championship) over years, but none of them has ever broken 85. It's very difficult for a freshman to play well in this situation --tough golf course and the (championship) environment. I can't tell you how pleased I am for (Li) and how excited I am for him."
Li caught fire once the postseason began, and he shot a 75 in the WPIAL team semifinals. Palmer said that during the season, Li was the Panthers' No. 6 golfer, but he vastly improved to No. 3 once tournament play began.
The title allowed the Panthers to qualify for the PIAA Class AA team championships at Heritage Hills Resort in York. There, Sewickley Academy placed third with a team score of 333. While two members of the team -- Hickton and Sam Duerr -- graduated, the Panthers return rising senior Anthony Muscato, rising junior Scott Brown and Li, who will be a sophomore this fall.
Fox Chapel's Sheerer enjoys solid postseason
Fox Chapel High golfer Patrick Sheerer gave himself quite a sendoff during his final season with the Foxes.
After placing fifth at the WPIAL Individual Golf Championship with a 1-over-par round of 71, Sheerer took top honors at the PIAA Western Regional at Tom's Run in Blairsville when he shot a 1-under-par round of 71.
That finish qualified him for the PIAA Class AAA state championship where her earned all-state honors when he finished in a 10th-place tie with Thomas Steve. Both golfers shot 12-over-par totals of 154 for the two-day event. Sheerer was steady with identical rounds of 77.