The qualities that helped Adam Xiao put together one of the best seasons for a Long Island varsity golfer were all on display on the second day of the state tournament.
The Manhasset junior’s driving and putting were both on point. But Xiao’s ability to analyze his own game and put the rare bad holes behind him were also critical components. This helped him complete a massive comeback and made him the first Long Island player to win the state title in 22 years.
“I made some mechanical adjustments and that really helped,” said Xiao, who shot a 4-under-par 67 at Cornell to give him a two-day score of 143.
He shot a 76 on the first day to put him in a tie for eighth, six strokes behind the leader. But he birdied the par-4 first, 6th and 16th holes and the par-5 11th hole on the second day. He ended up winning the tournament by two strokes.
Xiao also won his third consecutive Nassau County title by posting the fourth-lowest score in tournament history, a 141 over two days on Bethpage Blue and Red. He also helped Manhasset win a second county team title in three seasons.
Xiao shot a 74 on Bethpage Black to lead Manhasset to an 8-1 win over Sayville in the Long Island title match. It was the program’s first Long Island title.
Those team titles were the accomplishments Xiao said of which he was most proud.
“The team win is a lot more important to me,” he said. “I’m really playing for the team and not for myself.”
“I have a great playing partner,” said teammate Chris Thompson, who was paired with Xiao as Manhasset’s number two player, after the Long Island championship. “Adam’s a great player and it’s been great to get to play with him every day.”
Manhasset coach Chuck Coll yer has coached Xiao since seventh grade.
“You can always count on him,” Collyer said. “He has a passion for the game and a tremendous work ethic. He’s all business out there and he gets the job done over and over again. It’s been a pleasure to coach him.”