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Chambersburg's golf streak could be challenged

Although it may seem that way, it's not always a given that the Chambersburg golf team will breeze through a season unbeaten.

But that's certainly been the case lately.

The Trojans have rolled up seven consecutive Mid Penn golf division championships and have compiled a win streak of 163 matches. But the loss of seven seniors and a slight change in the Colonial Division lineup could make continuing that streak more of a challenge in 2016.

A team made up of one senior, two juniors, four sophomores and a pair of freshmen will open the season Tuesday in a Colonial Division match at Whitetail Golf Resort, with one team added to the division this year - Northern York.

"Northern was the division runner-up to Cumberland Valley last year, so they could give us a tussle," Chambersburg coach Mark Yost said. "We should be OK. Whether we stay undefeated ... that's to be determined."

Among the graduated seniors, two averaged scores in the 70s and three others averaged below 83.

But back are sophomore Karsen Rush (team-best 74.5 average), senior Luke Ocker (80.1) and sophomore Mary Kate Norcross (87.6).

Rush placed ninth in District 3-AAA last year and reached the PIAA Eastern Regional. Norcross was 12th in the District 3-AAA girls tournament, just missing a berth in the regional.

Yost said, "They both played in AJGA tournaments this summer, so they've been working on their games. If Karsen plays like he's capable of playing, he should go pretty far in the postseason."

This summer, Rush was the runner-up in the Pennsylvania Junior Boys Championship, one stroke back of the winner at Hershey Country Club. He shot rounds of 74 and 69, which was the best round of the tournament.

The rest of the Trojan lineup includes sophomores Spencer Rajtik and Grayson Hopple, freshman Spencer Bodner and junior Jake Werner, while junior Chase Wenger and freshman Luke Preso will work for playing time.

Yost said, "We're a young team and it's hard to know the expectations until I see what's out there (with the division teams). The team aspect makes it tricky, because you play five and count four scores, so it depends on how the other schools and how they do."

Trojans at a glance

Coach: Mark Yost, 18th season, 527-53 (.909).

Last year: 30-0, won Mid Penn Colonial Division, won Mid Penn championship, placed third in District 3 Class AAA.

Returning starters: Karsen Rush (so., 74.5 avg., placed 9th in District 3); Luke Ocker (sr., 80.1 avg., qualified for District 3 Tournament); Mary Kate Norcross (so., 87.6 avg., placed 12th in District 3-AAA).

Other players: Grayson Hopple (so.), Spencer Rajtik (so.), Jake Werner (jr.), Spencer Bodner (fr.), Luke Preso (fr.), Chase Wenger (jr.).

Season opener: Tuesday, in Mid Penn Colonial Division match at Whitetail Golf Resort, 12:30.