Smithtown West's Kaitlin Clancy is amped for final season

Smithtown West's Kaitlin Clancy tees off at the Smithtown West's Kaitlin Clancy tees off at the third hole at the Long Island Girls Team Championship between Garden City and Smithtown West held at Bethpage Green on May 28, 2013. Photo Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan

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Smithtown West's Kaitlin Clancy is expecting big things on the golf course.

The senior has her eyes on the state and county tournaments and team championship while helping younger teammates improve.

Plus, she expects to enjoy herself while doing it.

"It's going to be a lot fun," said Clancy, a sixth-year varsity player, who will be playing for Monmouth next year. "It's fun being the captain."

Clancy finished second in the Suffolk County individual tournament last season behind teammate Victoria Snak. The pair became the first teammates to finish first and second in the county, according to Smithtown West coach Tom Kane.

For the last five seasons, Snak and Clancy comprised one of the Island's fiercest one-two punches. With Snak having graduated, Clancy is now the team's undisputed leader, a role she says she relishes and one Kane says she excels at.

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"She stepped right in the day the day the team named her captain," Kane said. "She's definitely ready for sole leadership."

Kane added Clancy is both "our best player and our hardest worker," which is why she commands the respect of the entire team.

"The team misses Victoria, but I try not to put too much pressure on myself," Clancy said of her new role.

Over the course of her career, Clancy displayed a powerful swing, and has recently been working on her short and intermediate game, a process Kane says has yielded results.

She credits this improvement to both Kane and swing coach Mike Hebron, who she has been working with since she was in seventh grade.

Last season, in her third trip to the state tournament at SUNY Delhi, Clancy finished 13th, the third-highest score for a Long Island player.

As for what she expects in her final varsity season, Clancy wants to "play well in counties and hopefully States," while also helping Smithtown West defend its team county championship.

It would be a fitting end to a career that has produced a lot of growth, a lot of success and a lot of fun.

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