Locust Valley’s Thomas Finn got ahead and stayed ahead at the Nassau County boys golf tournament.
The junior shot a 6-over-par 76 on Thursday on Bethpage Red, following a 1-under-par 71 on Bethpage Blue Wednesday to win the Nassau individual title with a 147 total. He edged brothers Sean Shallat and Zachary Shallat of Friends Academy. Sean placed second with a 148 and Zach was third with a 149.
Finn entered Thursday’s second round of the county tournament three shots clear of the field.
"I was swinging it great yesterday [Wednesday] and was hitting a lot of fairways and greens, which led to four birdies, and offset the three bogeys I made," Finn said. "Today [Thursday] I was just trying to have fun and enjoy myself. I made sure I stuck to my routine and did not worry about what the other golfers were doing."
Finn, Sean, and Zach would have been state qualifiers this year, but because of the pandemic, there will not be a state championship.
"As I entered the final few holes of the tournament, I just tried to keep a solid round going for my team and also for the individual title," Finn said. "I did not know where I was in the standings going into the last three holes, but I knew if I kept making pars I would have a good chance."
Finn went 1-over for the final three holes and made a bogey putt on the 18th to secure the victory.
Syosset’s Ryan Millevoi (150) placed fourth for the second consecutive county tournament. Garden City’s Mark Vitels (151) was fifth, Massapequa’s William Welling and Cold Spring Harbor’s Aidan Flynn finished tied for sixth (152), Locust Valley’s Colin McCullagh (153) was eighth and Great Neck’s Luke Huang (154) ended up ninth. Jericho’s Edward Paik and Syosset’s Troy Sanchez were 10th with a 155.
Each golfer listed above would also have qualified for the states with Paik and Sanchez serving as alternates.
Finn and McCullagh helped lead the Falcons to the Nassau team championship as they totaled 794 over the two-day tournament. Friends Academy placed second (798) and Jericho was third (802).
"It is very disappointing knowing that I’m playing some great golf and that I will not be able to have the opportunity to play and have a chance at winning states," Finn said. "At least I had the opportunity to compete for the county title while the pandemic is still ongoing, and it was awesome."