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St. Francis’ Hanes shares All-Catholics top honors

St. Francis sophomore David Hanes provided a hint of his potential at the Monsignor Martin Athletic Association Golf Championships. More could be on the way.

He and junior Gregory Sibick of Nichols both took advantage of the favorable conditions on a warm and sunny day, shooting rounds of 74 (2-over par) to co-medal at All-Catholics Oct. 14, at Orchard Park Country Club.

“The sky is the limit for David,” said St. Francis head golf coach Chuck Stephenson, who is in his sixth season as head coach. “He’s certainly going to be going to a Division 1 golf program and he can go as far as he wants to go.”

Both players got off to shaky starts. Sibick, who started on hole No.1 in the shotgun format, bogeyed his first three holes, while Hanes, who started on 18, played holes 1 through 3 in 4-over par. Hanes was able to make birdies on holes 4, 7 and 17, his last hole, to ultimately get him into a tie for the lead.

“It feels pretty good,” Hanes said. “To be one of the best out here ... it means a lot. To step up this year is pretty big for me.”

After pounding a tee shot down the middle on the 480-yard par-5, his hybrid then went under a tree close to the green. His pitch shot from under the tree landed about 5 feet from the cup and he was able to convert the putt.

“It was a rough start,” Hanes said. “I just had to keep on making sure that I stayed on track and there’s birdie holes out there and I just had to get at it.”

Sibick made just one par on the front nine, but made enough birdies along the way to come back and post a number good enough for co-medalist honors. “I had a lot of expectations coming into the tournament so it’s good,” Sibick said.

Hanes, who came in fifth place a year ago as a freshman, said he knows how great of an accomplishment it is to medal at the All-Catholic Championship. His older brother Billy did the same thing, during his time at St. Francis.

This summer, Hanes placed seventh in the Erie County Amateur, with rounds of 73 and 74, and also took sixth in the New York State Boys Championships at Skaneateles Country Club and was second in the Buffalo District Boys Stroke Play Championship.

St. Francis, as a team, tied for first in the season-long team standings with a record of 9 – 3, but placed third in the event with a team score of 391, seven strokes behind champion Canisius.

Junior John Dantonio and senior Peter Goszewski shot rounds of 78, to help their team reach third. Hanes, Dantonio and Goszewski all qualified for the state championship this spring, at James Baird State Park in Poughkeepsie. The team received senior leadership from Goszewski, Evan Loomis, and John Roberts and will look to build upon a successful season in 2013, with a returning core.

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