At 6-2-1, talented Melrose qualifies for North Sectional

Published in the October 12, 2018 edition


MELROSE—The Melrose Red Raider golf team will see a post season after clinching a playoff spot in a 40.5-31.5 victory over Lexington on Oct. 4, 2018 at Bellevue Golf Club in Melrose. At 6-2-1 the Red Raiders are still in the hunt for a Middlesex Freedom title that could come as early as this week. Melrose hopes to prevail over Stoneham on Thursday (post deadline, and weather pending) in order to get that done. 

“It was a great match. It all game together,” says Melrose head coach Rick McDermod of the effort against Lexington.  

Against the Minutemen, Melrose once again capitalized on a strong top-to-bottom lineup that saw Melrose #1 shooter Will Pierce defeat his Lexington opponent, 5.5-3.5. And #8 shooter Tommy Brodeur continues to save the day, generating enough points in his 8-1 victory to offset other match losses. 

“Will looks great and he plays very strong at home,” says McDermod. “And Tommy just crushed his opponent. He’s making such a difference for us, playing terrific golf.”

SEAN SENIER and the MHS golf team have their eyes on clinching the league this week. (Donna Larsson photo)

Also coming up victorious against the Minutemen were Will Goodwin (6-3), Tim Healey (5.5-3.5) while a solid 4.5-4.5 tie by Jack Crowley helped keep Melrose competitive. 

Melrose had a minor hiccup on Oct. 3 when they fell to Wakefield in a narrow 38.5-33.5 loss, a match that might have punched their ticket to a postseason earlier. According to McDermod, Melrose didn’t exactly play to their potential, despite a wonderful performance by Quinn McCarthy, who birdied in the first hole. “After Quinn, the rest of the team struggled at that hole, unfortunately. I told them how important it is to get off to a strong start. But Wakefield is a team with a deceptive record and, like us last year, lost a lot of matches by one point. I wasn’t surprised by their effort. I’m just glad we bounced back with a big win over Lexington.” 

It’s been a handful of years since Melrose made it to the Div. 2 North Sectionals, and this season they have a larger scoring potential to produce weightier results. “We have two very strong top shooters and a real vast pool of players to help the cause,” confirms McDermod. 

In fact, the coach plans to hold an inter-squad playoff match next week so Melrose players can battle each other to prove which shooters should represent Melrose in Sectionals. And in order to do well in Sectionals, he’d like to see his players break 80. “That possibility has a lot to do with the course we are playing on in Dracut. We will be scouting it out soon.” 

Sectionals will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 23 at Four Oaks Golf Club in Dracut. 

But in the meantime, Melrose will like to finish their regular season matches on a winning note. That includes their consecutive home matches against Reading (Wednesday) and Stoneham (Thursday). They also await a makeup match against Arlington on a date and time to be determined.