New Locale, New Coach for Millis Golf

Christopher Tremblay, Staff Sports Writer
Millis High’s golf team will now share Holliston’s Pinecrest Golf Club with Holliston and Ashland High Schools, now that it has lost its former location of Glen Ellen Country Club. They also begin this year with a first-time coach, Lance Benham.
Issue Date: 
October, 2018
Article Body: 

When Glen Ellen Country Club closed, the Millis golf team lost their coach, who was also the golf pro at the country club, and Athletic Director Chuck Grant was forced to scramble to find a Coach for the upcoming season as well as a new golf course to call home.
The golf team will now share Holliston’s Pinecrest Golf Club with Holliston and Ashland High School. Although Glen Ellen was in town and accessible for the golfers, many of the athletes were already playing at Pinecrest due to the affordable cost to a high school golfer.
Lance Benham, a science teacher in the Millis school system for the last 11 years was named the first-time coach to take over the golf team this fall. Growing up in Northern Vermont, Benham enjoyed playing golf, although his high school did not have a team. He was a member of the local country club and played as much golf as he could during the nights and on weekends.
“Since the birth of my two daughters, my golf had becaome limited,” the new coach said. “I am glad to have the opportunity to get back on the course and coach this fine group of young adults that is the Millis golf team.”
On the links, Benham will be looking to senior captain Peter Sanchioni to help him lead the team. The senior captain has been looking good so far in practices shooting in the mid 40’s over nine holes and will probably be the team’s number four golfer. In addition to setting a good example for the rest of the team, Benham is also looking for his captain to mentor the younger players as needed.
Battling it out for the top two posts will be juniors Ryan Brooks and TJ Hourigan, who both shoot in the low 40’s. Hourigan has a better long game, while Brooks is a good fairway shooter and chipper.
Following either Hourigan or Brooks in the number three spot will be Thomas Hill, Jonathan Leduc will be at five, Jake Costa, Mike Govani and Josh Berman will be tee off sixth, seventh and eighth respectively. According to Benham, three through eight pretty much all have about the same skill level and on any given day the five athletes can bounce between the spots.
Senior Tyler Gelasco, who would have seen some course action, was lost for the season when he injured his shoulder.
“As a first-year coach, I want to guys to be professional on the course and set the standard. That’s how we do it – small school, big family” the Coach said. “I will be coaching athletes of all different levels of the sport and am hoping that each and every one of them gets better by the end of the year.”
For the most part, the Millis athletes know what they are doing on the course as the come from families who play golf on a regular basis. On the other hand, those on the practice squad, are younger and will need some coaching.
As for competing in the Tri Valley League Benham does not have a clue what to expect this season.
“I’ve never done this (coaching) before, but I do see us pulling out 6 or 7 wins,” Benham said. “It’s going to be tough, and we are not going to be competitive against towns that have junior varsity programs. We just have our varsity team and a limited practice squad so that puts us at a disadvantage.”
Disadvantage or not, the Millis golfers are looking to take to the golf course and perform at their best while improving their games as the season progresses and, who knows? They may even go above and beyond their coach’s expectations.