Viera girls golf gears up for another state title run


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Viera's Trinity Falzone (left) and Manon Donohe-Gay believe their experience at last year's state golf tournament will help them make a run at the title this season.

VIERA VOICE Carl Kotala

If the Viera High girls golf team can win its 10th consecutive district championship this season, it would be quite an accomplishment.

But the Hawks don’t measure themselves by district titles, not with two state championships already in their trophy case.

“The goal from the very beginning of the season is to get to state,” senior Trinity Falzone said. “We don’t have minor goals. It’s we’re going to get to state.”

Last year’s team went to the Mission Inn Resort & Club in Howey-in-the-Hills with the best regional score in Class 3A. The Hawks finished seventh, and graduated just one player from that team, making coach Greg Ford excited about what the prospects hold for this season.

“We’ve learned from (last year) and can move forward,” Ford said. “We’re getting better throughout the season, so that’s a positive. It’s a rhetorical thing to say, but they worked harder this summer than the summer before, so it shows their maturity. It’s showing in their game.

“I’m excited. I think we can achieve our goals.”

Viera’s No 1 player, junior Manon Donche-Gay, believes her familiarity with the course after playing there last season will help her tremendously should the Hawks make it back.

“The course is really technical, and I kind of like those courses because you get to think a lot,” Donche-Gay said. “Now that I’m more comfortable with it, I feel like I’m going to play better this year.”

Sophomore Briana Gabe is Viera’s No. 2 player, followed by junior Mary Kate Smith, Falzone, freshman Nina Donche-Gay (Manon’s cousin), junior Melissa Luciani and sophomore Anana Gaston.

In order to get ready for the state tournament, the Hawks played in the Honda Classic High School Invitational at the PGA National Resort this past weekend.

That should give Viera players a good idea of where they stand. So should spending a little bit of time in Howey-in-the-Hills.

“I think we have a better chance of winning state this year than last year,” Falzone said. “We have more practice rounds set up this year to prepare for state than we did last year.”

You know you’ve really arrived as a program when winning a district title is seen as merely a stepping stone for bigger things.

So does that make it more fun to be a part of? Or does it add pressure?

Perhaps, it’s a little bit of both.

“When you aim high,” Manon Donche-Gay said, “you just practice harder to reach that goal.”