New coach guiding youth Twinsburg girls golf squad
Tigers look to compete in rugged National Conference
For Heath Savage, it was all about timing.
The first-year Twinsburg girls golf head coach has seen plenty of encouraging signs early on as his club embarks on a unique season.
“I am excited to be the new golf coach – I have been a fifth-grade math and science teacher at Dodge Elementary for the last 21 years and a proud father of two teenage daughters of my own,” said Savage.
Savage elected to take a break from coaching and then has returned — this time to the golf links.
He was coaching middle school volleyball in the fall of 2002 when he was also hired as a girls’ varsity basketball assistant in the winter.
“Once I accepted the varsity assistant position for girls basketball, I needed to focus all of my off-season time on the basketball program, so I chose not to continue coaching middle school volleyball after the fall 2002 season.”
Deciding to retire upon the birth of his second daughter, the Ohio University graduate switched gears.
“My retirement from coaching allowed me to spend my time being a dedicated father,” he said. “My daughters are becoming independent young ladies at this point in my life so I felt this would be a great opportunity to get back into coaching.”
Enter the youthful Twinsburg girls golf program.
Savage actually began coaching as an undergrad student at Ohio University and was hired as the middle school boys basketball coach for Nelsonville-York during his junior and senior campaigns in Athens.
Now the coach is instructing girls golf and Savage is excited about the task at hand.
“Our golf team this year consists of 14 amazing young ladies,” pointed out Savage.
Sophomore Lyndsey Stephens returns as the Tiger’s most accomplished golfer, while junior Maya Stewart also lends plenty of experience.
Last year when Twinsburg tied for third place in the Suburban League National Conference and placed sixth in sectional action, Stephens made first-team all-league and became a rare district qualifier as a freshman.
“Maya and Lyndsey have experience and Lyndsey has become a great leader on our current varsity team despite only being a sophomore,” said Savage.
Stewart will also play a key role as first-team all-league standout Tyler Gliba has graduated along with Sophia Sayavich, who earned honorable mention all-league honors.
Seniors on the Tiger roster include Jasmine Jamison and Cydney Walker.
Juniors include Stewart, Abby Ryan, Julie Marquiz, Jordyn Boron, Jessica Gunn and Leah Bertleff.
Iyana Gramajo is a sophomore while Savannah Waldon, Hannah Kurt, Carli Bova and Josie Davis comprise a large freshman class.
Featuring a trimmed down schedule like most program this season, Twinsburg has competed in two Suburban League tournaments.
At the second league tournament at Brookledge Golf Course in Cuyahoga Falls Aug. 12, Twinsburg placed seventh out of eight schools with a 344.
Hudson won and edged Nordonia 345-347 for team honors as Stow-Munroe Falls took third at 354.
“Lyndsey (Stephens) led the way with a score of 88 and Maya (Stewart) had another strong finish of 108,” offered Savage. “Jordyn Boron joined our varsity team for this tournament and played very well.”
“We have a lot of young talent on our team and the girls are strong competitors. I am very excited for the remainder of the season and to see the development of all of our golfers.”
In the first league tournament, Aug. 6 at Twinsburg’s Gleneagles Golf Club, Stow won the competition with a score of 348, Hudson was at 363, and Nordonia placed third (366).
Stephens score of 92 paced the Tigers. Stewart had a strong finish of 101 while Ryan, Gramajo, Jamison, and Marquiz competed very well as they each made their varsity debut.