On Monday, Kirtland first-year golf coach Al Canitia guided the Hornets to their first Chagrin Valley Conference Valley Division title since 2012.
Michael Schnur had a lot to do with winning that title.
The senior shot an 81 to win medalist honors and also secured his fourth straight league MVP award.
“One of the kids on the bus ride back said, ‘Coach, we should be all right next year but we’re losing the heart and soul of the team,’” Canitia said. “They know they’re going to miss him. He’s a kid they look up to and he definitely helps everybody out. That’s very much appreciated.”
Schnur’s brother John, who now plays golf at John Carroll University, was a member of that 2012 league championship squad. The elder Schnur won two league titles but only staked claim to three MVP awards.
That’s where Michael Schnur has an advantage by winning four straight MVP awards, but he knows that title means nothing if he doesn’t extend his season in the sectional and district tournaments to return to state.
“Winning MVP (awards) is great, but if you don’t do anything in the playoffs your season doesn’t mean too much,” Schnur said. “I have a lot of work ahead of me.”
Schnur maneuvered his way around a difficult course to edge Independence’s Carson Bianco for the tournament title. Bianco carded an 84.
“It was a tough course today, at least in our groups, everyone was struggling,” Canitia said. “The boys were getting a little frustrated. I told them everyone is struggling, just keep at it and they did.”
Adam Mueller, who shot an 87, and Jack Dever, who carded a 92, were named first team All-CVC, and Isabel Anness, who shot a 91, was named to the second team.
Sean McGill ended the tournament with an 87 and earned honorable mention all-league honors.
“Adam parred the last four holes to shoot 87 and Isabel played great again to make second team. That’s very impressive,” Canitia said. “Sean was the big surprise. He’s been working on his game and he got new clubs. It showed today. He took a big step and that sets us up for next year. He should be right there in the No. 3 spot.”
The Hornets will compete at the sectional tournament next week.
The boys will play in the Division II tournament on Monday at Quail Hollow while Anness will join the girls at Punderson Golf Course on Tuesday.