Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Long Fits Right in with Lions

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Long Fits Right in with Lions

Article excerpt

Corey Long has an idea what it's like to be around WPIAL championship-caliber athletes.

Three years ago, when he was a freshman at South Fayette High School, some of his classmates were on the Lions' football team that won the WPIAL Class AA championship.

Long, a standout senior golfer, was able to experience that for himself on Oct. 2 as he outlasted Indiana Area senior Matt Holuta in a playoff that lasted four holes at the WPIAL Class AAA boys championship at Diamond Run in Ohio Township. Long is South Fayette's first WPIAL individual golf champion.

The playoff concluded a spectacular day of high school golf as the top four finishers played under-par golf with Long and Holuta sharing the lead before the playoff with 3-under-par rounds of 67. Two Upper St. Clair standout seniors, Thomas Steve and Grant Engel, placed third and fourth, respectively, with rounds of 68 and 69.

Those four, along with the next 10 finishers, qualified for the PIAA Western Regional next Wednesday at Tom's Run Golf Course in Blairsville. Besides Long, Steve and Engel, the other South Xtra area qualifiers were Peters Township senior Josh Verner (76) and Zach Taylor (77), a Baldwin High junior and 2011 WPIAL Division I individual champion.

"The support has been amazing," he said of the first day or two after he returned to school following his nail-biting title effort. "I've lost count of how many times I've said 'Thank you' to teachers, friends and students.

"It goes back to the camaraderie we have at South Fayette, and the seniors who were freshmen on that 2010 team knows what it feels like [to win a WPIAL championship], and they congratulated me as well."

Long said Holuta was playing in the group in front of him during the regulation part of the tournament, but he was not aware that the two were tied until he was informed of that development after he completed his round. …

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