Kondel takes charge of Vernon golf team

| 23 Apr 2018 | 03:44

There are instances when the head coach of a high school sports team may be figuratively, or maybe even literally scratching their heads when considering which senior on the varsity roster will emerge as a leader and help guide their teammates in a positive manner. Unfortunately, it sometimes happens that a serious leader never steps forward and the team suffers as a result.
Let’s just say that the Vernon High School golf program doesn’t have that concern this spring. Dan Kondel, still just a junior, is the captain for the Vikings and to make it even more noteworthy-this is Kondel’s second year in that significant leadership role.
For Joe Byrne, Vernon’s head coach, the selection of Kondel as the captain wasn’t only an easy one to make, it was the right decision as well. Kondel has shined bright for the Vikings since he was a ninth grader.
“Dan is the heart and soul of our golf team," Byrne said. “He leads by example, has fun and is our hardest worker. So far we have only had a few matches, but Dan has been a key to our strong (3-1 record through April 16) start. He has been the anchor of our golf team since his freshman year."
Coach Byrne notices the way in which Kondel is always trying to better himself as a golfer, never taking a short cut.
“He is continually trying to improve all parts of his game and takes time after practice to do this, whether it's on his own or during a lesson," Byrne said.
It’s not at all surprising, given his leadership abilities that Kondel excels in the classroom.
“Dan is enrolled in all Honors/AP courses and is very successful in all of them," Byrne said. “In addition to this, he competed in the State competition for DECA."
Kondel is also interested in what’s in the best interest of his fellow golfers at Vernon, something that coach Byrne also notices. Through April 16, he had a nine-hole scoring average of 41.2.
“Dan works well with the newer golfers and also assists our varsity players with the little intricacies of the game," Byrne said.
The Vikings, who have a match versus Pope John on April 30 at Great Gorge Country Club, have been competed quite well this year and it certainly does take a team effort.
“Shane Brennan has improved much from last year and as of the first (four) matches is our scoring leader (at 41.0)," Byrne said.