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Liberty golf captures EPC title

There is little doubt that Liberty head golf coach Steve Bradley and his team have enjoyed the last two seasons.

Their main highlight was advancing to the state title match last fall.

In many ways, it has been a memorable run, recently highlighted with their first East Penn Conference (EPC) championship since 2017. The Hurricanes won the EPC regular-season title last year when there wasn’t a postseason round due to COVID.

“We had some close matches in the regular season but the kids pulled through,” said Bradley. “It’s been neat to watch what these kids have done in the past two years. Their only loss was in the state championships.

“They are a fun bunch. Nothing much bothers them, yet they always keep competing after a bad front nine. They will rebound and finish strong with a solid round.

“They have a very competitive attitude and have set team and individual goals. Hopefully, winning the EPC is just the start of their postseason play.”

Matt and Michael Vital, Jase and Jimmy Barker and Matt Ronca have been the Hurricanes front five all season. Ronca was the final piece after he transferred from Freedom.

Matt Vital and Jimmy Barker participated in the district pre-qualifier Monday, and Jase Barker was exempt because he advanced to states last year.

Matt Vital believes he can still play his best golf ahead.

“I’m really happy to be able to win the league championship as a team just like last year,” said Vital. “I wasn’t too happy with the start of the season, but I definitely got it going toward the end of the season.

“My game is coming back around.”

Bradley is confident his club can win districts, but he understands it won’t be an easy task. It will be held next Monday Oct. 12 with Liberty, Emmaus, Lehighton, and Nazareth in the field.

If the Hurricanes win districts, they will likely see Philadelphia Catholic League favorite LaSalle, who had their fate decided Wednesday in the league match. The Hurricanes defeated them last year to advance to states.

“Districts will be tough,” added Bradley. “Emmaus and Nazareth are well coached, and their players are sharp. I’m looking forward to an exciting, competitive match at districts.”

Contributed photo The Liberty golf team poses with the EPC trophy after winning the title.