But he does believe the strong core of upperclassmen and promising group of freshmen the Ravens will send to the links in 1999 should keep them in most matches.
"We just want to be competitive this year, and bring our freshmen along so we have a nucleus for the future," said Bills, whose Ravens opened the '99 campaign today at the Nordonia Classic. "From what the kids that played last year have said, we're looking to go .500 this year. Everyone knows how strong the WRC is. Really, I don't see much slack in our schedule at all."
Bills is banking on senior Jeff Pyles and junior Tom Ludwick to anchor the squad along with fellow returning letterwinners Chase Roberts and Steve Breznai, while Chris Wymer and his fellow rookies gain valuable experience in '99.
"Ludwick has been playing well, and Pyles is coming along," said Bills. "Pyles has been playing baseball this summer, so he's just starting to pick golf back up. They should be our top two guys."
Roberts and Breznai are currently manning the No. 3 and No. 4 spots, followed by Wymer and junior Jeff Curry.
Upperclassmen Mike Baettler, Clay Long, Dan Fosnight and Lona Stutzman provide depth, while freshmen Matt Byers, Jeremy Allen and Adam Porcase should improve immensely as the season progresses.
"I like our freshman group," said Bills. "With them, the future looks pretty good."
The Ravens will practice and play home matches at Windmill Lakes and Kent State University this season according to Bills.
"Windmill Lakes is our home varsity course, and Kent State is helping us by letting our JVs play there," said Bills. "We'd also like to thank the people at Ravenswood for their past support."
The Ravens' junior varsity team is coached by a pair of former local golf standouts, Keith McGowan and Mike Fenstermacher.
McGowan was an all-county player at Field High School, while
Fenstermacher was the Ravens' No. 1 player a year ago.