WPIAL boys golf preview: Central Catholic, Sewickley Academy set to defend titles

Wednesday, August 14, 2019 | 4:43 PM

Skyler Fox will be a senior this fall at Riverside. The WPIAL golf wunderkind has done nothing but win since he broke onto the scene as a wiry and wide-eyed freshman.

Fox has the potential to do something this season nobody has done in WPIAL boys golf history: win a fourth individual championship.

Last season, Fox became the first boys golfer since Fox Chapel’s Frank Fuhrer III (1974-76) — and the third in WPIAL history — to win three consecutive titles. The first was Brentwood’s Ron Schwarzel (1952-54).

Fox is the favorite again in Class AA, although five of the top six WPIAL finishers last year were juniors, including Aidan Bulger of Quaker Valley, Jack Hritsko of Chartiers-Houston, Stone Ellis of South Park and JF Aber of Sewickley Academy.

The top five finishers in Class AAA, meantime, all graduated, including WPIAL champion Jimmy Meyers of Central Catholic and PIAA champion Palmer Jackson of Franklin Regional.

And while on the subject of repeat champions, Sewickley Academy set the WPIAL record last year with its sixth straight team title. The Panthers have the talent to make it seven in a row in Class AA.

Sewickley Academy broke Turtle Creek’s record of five consecutive titles from 1934-38. The Panthers were third in the state.

Central Catholic won its third straight team title in Class AAA — and a PIAA title — but must replace a pair of front-men in Meyers and Neal Shipley.

Teams to watch

Class AAA — Central Catholic, Fox Chapel, Pine-Richland, Penn-Trafford

Class AA — Sewickley Academy, Riverside, South Park, Chartiers-Houston

Players to watch

Class AAA — Scott Bitar, Sr., Fox Chapel; Palmer Cuny, Jr., Central Catholic; Luke Lestini, Sr., South Fayette; Aiden Oerhle, Jr., Fox Chapel; Alex Turowski, Jr., Penn-Trafford

Class AA — JF Aber, Sr., Sewickley Academy; Aidan Bulger, Sr., Stone Ellis, Jr., South Park; Skyler Fox, Sr., Riverside; Quaker Valley; Jack Hritsko, Sr., Chartiers-Houston

WPIAL dates to remember

Sept, 16-17 — Section tournaments

Sept. 23 — Class AAA individual semifinals (Hannastown Golf Club, Willowbrook Golf Club)

Sept 26 — Class AA individual championship (Allegheny Country Club)

Oct. 1 — Class AAA individual championship (Fox Chapel Golf Club)

Oct. 8 — Class AAA team semifinals (Beaver Valley Golf Club, Indian Run Golf Club, River Forest Country Club, The Links at Spring Church)

Oct. 10 — Team finals (Cedarbrook Golf Course)

Oct. 15 — PIAA West Regional (Chestnut Ridge Resort)

Oct. 21-22 — PIAA individual championships (Heritage Hills Resort, York)

Oct. 23 — PIAA team championships (Heritage Hills Resort, York)

Recap of the 2018 season here.

Past WPIAL champions

2018 — Jimmy Meyers, Central Catholic (AAA); Skyler Fox, Riverside (AA)

2017 — Chris Sabol, Moon (AAA); Skyler Fox, Riverside (AA)

2016 — Gregor Meyer, Fox Chapel (AAA); Skyler Fox, Riverside (AA)

2015 — Hunter Bruce, Peters Township (Class AAA); Jason Li, Sewickley Academy (Class AA)

2014 — Anthony Cordaro, Fox Chapel (Class AAA); Chris Tanabe, Quaker Valley (Class AA)

2013 — Corey Long, South Fayette (Class AAA); Matt Barto, Leechburg (Class AA)

2012 — Brent Rodgers, Central Catholic (Class AAA); Matt Barto, Leechburg (Class AA)

2011 — Zack Taylor, Baldwin (Division I); Brad Thornton, Shenango (Division II)

2010 — Bo Lustig, Belle Vernon (Division I); Max Kaminsky, Serra Catholic (Division II)

2009 — Ben Gjebre, Latrobe

2008 — Adam Stawski, Plum

2007 — Brock Pompeani, Hopewell

2006 — Adam Hofmann, Fox Chapel

2005 — Christian Goetz, Burgettstown

2004 — Mike Van Sickle, Pine-Richland

2003 — Mike Van Sickle, Pine-Richland

2002 — Tim Moynihan, Franklin Regional

2001 — David Vallina, Burgettstown

2000 — David Valllina, Burgettstown

1999 — Scott Chisholm, North Hills

1998 — Nate Speer, Burrell

1997 — Tom Barnhart, Laurel Highlands

1996 — Andy Latowski, Baldwin

1995 — Russ Manski, Central Catholic

1994 — Andy Hay, North Catholic

1993 — Brian Tutich, Greensburg Central Catholic

1992 — Jeff Dickson, Knoch

1991 — Jeff Dickson, Knoch

1990 — Jeff Diehl, Butler

1989 — Kevin Shields, Mt. Lebanon

1988 — Perry DiNardo, Trinity

1987 — George Laskey, Geibel

1986 — Kevin Reisenweaver, Latrobe

1985 — Seth Pevarnik, Greensburg Central Catholic

1984 — Tony Brovety, Bentworth

1983 — Paul Balest, Greensburg Salem

1982 — Greg Klabon, Shenango

1981 — Kurt Beck, Upper St. Clair

1980 — Jim Watterson, Upper St. Clair

1979 — Bob Bradley, Hempfield

1978 — Steve Savor, Jr., Springdale

1977 — Ray Nelson, Ligonier

1976 — Frank Fuhrer III, Fox Chapel

1975 — Frank Fuhrer III, Fox Chapel

1974 — Frank Fuhrer III, Fox Chapel

1973 — Scott Arthur, Moon

1972 — Dennis Osborne, Butler

1971 — Mike Phillips, West Allegheny

1970 — Mike Phillips, West Allegheny

1969 — Rich Foutz, Plum

1968 — Harry Hamilton, West Allegheny (fall season)

1968 — Jim Simons, Knoch (spring season)

1967 — Frank Garella, West Mifflin North

1966 — Sterret Watt, Northwestern

1965 — Rick Hrip, Butler

1964 — Charles Cullison, Baldwin

1963 — Scott Yard, Greensburg

1962 — Jim Lynch, Mt. Lebanon

1961 — Bob O’Block, Plum

1960 — Bob O’Block, Plum

1959 — George Mackanos, Penn Hills

1958 — Fred Maeder, Har-Brack

1957 — Jack Veroncy, Moon

1956 — Wally Samuels, Mt. Lebanon

1955 — Ken O’Gorman, Moon

1954 — Ron Schwarzel, Brentwood

1953 — Ron Schwarzel, Brentwood

1952 — Ron Schwarzel, Brentwood

1951 — Bill Gabel, Ambridge

1950 — Tom Cherok, Penn Hills

1949 — Rich McCarthy, West View

1948 — Bill Thompson, Sharon

1947 — Arnold Palmer, Latrobe

1946 — Arnold Palmer, Latrobe

1945 — Tom Denny, Greensburg Salem

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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