The Golf Team’s Hole In One Season

The EHHS Golf team started off their 2022 season under the direction of new Head Coach Rick Narracci, Assistant Coach Mark Tolla, and Senior Captain, Nick Sorrentino.

The EHHS Golf team has been in existence since the 1960s. After previous head Coach Augustine retired, Physical Education teacher Rick Narracci was appointed this year’s head coach. Psychology Teacher and Head Wrestling Coach Mark Tolla is his Assistant Coach. Tolla became an Assistant Coach due to his love of golf. He says, “It has been an addiction of mine for the past 5 or 6 years.” This season, the two coaches are working together to get their players ready for all their matches. Coach Narracci has been teaching players new skills and techniques to the players while Assistant Coach Tolla works with players to reinforce these skills and techniques. Both coaches work together to help players get better in their problem areas.

Coach Narracci says the golf team isn’t as well known as other sports in the school for a variety of reasons. The main reason is the expense the sport comes with. Narracci says, “It’s an expensive sport to get into.” The two coaches do their best to promote their sport as much as possible. Coach Narracci says, “I reached out to the kids at the middle school. I try to get our kids on the team to reach out to their friends, and I’ll talk to kids, especially freshmen who I have in class.” He’ll ask students if they play sports, if they’re interested, or if they’ve played golf before. Assistant Coach Tolla’s approach to promoting golf is also word of mouth, he’s “trying to get interested young people to try out a sport that they can play for the entirety of their life.” Senior Nick Sorrentino has been on the golf team for 4 years and is the current Team Captain. When choosing Team Captains, Coach Narracci has a process. He’ll take into consideration “the time a player has been on the team, their commitment to the sport, their standing in school, leadership qualities, their eagerness to promote the sport,” and more.

Photo Credit: Mr. Narracci

The team has had 10 matches so far and has won 7 of them. They’ve played Branford, Hillhouse, Willcox Tech, Cheshire, and more. They’re also ranked 11th in the Division 2 and have 3 tournaments coming up; the State Tournament on June 6, 2022, the Coach-Captain Tournament on June 1, 2022, and the SCC Girl’s Championships on June 2, 2022, in which Senior Norah Rome will play as an individual. For this season, Coach Narracci’s goals are to “try and have the highest finish possible in the State Tournament, try to finish strong, and go into the state tournament playing our best.” Assistant Coach Tolla’s goals for this season are to develop the younger players so they’ll be ready for when senior players leave. Senior Mike Gagliardi’s goal for this season is to help out the team in any way and better himself as a player.

The team practices Monday through Thursday and Sunday morning, depending on the weather, at the Allen Memorial Range in New Haven. On Sundays, they’ll go to Fairways Golf Range in Branford. While in the range practice will focus on a player's struggles or they’ll spend time on the putting green doing putting drills. On other days, they’ll play the course as a kind of practice match in order to get players prepared for a real match. In order to prepare for a game the team practices 4-5 times a week, they’ll go to a driving range in Branford, and Narracci has an old childhood friend, who was a golf professional for 25 years, work with the players at the range. Mike Gagliardi prepares for a game by relaxing, listening to music, and visualizing himself at the match.

Players can use their own equipment, but the team has access to clubs and bags for any new players. The players are also provided with golf balls for matches. The team also got brand new Adidas uniforms this year in a variety of colors and styles with the school's emblem on the chest. Some of those colors and styles include blue and gray, and ¾ zip pullovers.

Photo Credit: Mr. Narracci

The golf team players, captains, and coaches are committed to building the program and ensuring a solid season this spring. We wish them luck throughout the rest of their season.