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July 15. 2014 8:08PM

State Am Notebook: Paradis wins Ty Abate Award, says 68 'could have been lower'


Matthew Paradis of Derryfield Country Club follows his shot after teeing off in the 2014 State Amateur Championship at Stonebridge Country Club in Goffstown on Monday. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)

GOFFSTOWN — Matt Paradis wasn’t completely satisfied with the 4-under-par 68 he shot in Tuesday’s second round of the State Am, but he scored well enough to win the Ty Abate Award, which is presented annually to the low scorer in stroke play among golfers who are 19 or younger.

Paradis, an 18-year-old Hooksett resident, finished the two rounds of stroke play by shooting 5-under-par 139 (71-68) in the 2014 New Hampshire Golf Association State Amateur Championship tournament, at Stonebridge Country Club. He completed stroke play one shot behind medalist Ryan Kohler of Hooper Golf Club in Walpole.

“It could have been a lower round,” Paradis said. “I lipped out a bunch of putts. I could have seen 65, but there’s never a round where you don’t think you could have done better. That’s golf.”

Paradis, who graduated from Manchester Central High School this year, is representing Manchester’s Derryfield Country Club. He’s also a member at Concord Country Club.

Paradis finished second in the NHIAA Division I individual golf tournament as a sophomore, junior and senior. He won the Manchester City Golf Tournament by eight strokes last year, and finished fourth in the New England Interscholastic Boys Golf Championships last month.

Paradis said he will attend Lincoln Technical Institute — a firefighter academy in Melbourne, Fla. — in the fall, and may attempt to play golf in college after that.

This is the third time Paradis has competed in the State Am. He also qualified for match play in 2012 and in 2013. He reached the Round of 16 in last year’s tournament.

“I love match play,” he said. “Each hole is its own little tournament.”

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THE seven past champions in this year’s field all qualified for match play. That group features Dan Arvanitis of Derryfield Country Club (2001), Craig Steckowych of Portsmouth Country Club in Greenland (1990, 1998), Nick MacDonald of Hanover Country Club (2010), Jim Cilley of Pembroke Pines Country Club (2011), Joe Leavitt of Atkinson Resort & Country Club (2012) and Phil Pleat of Nashua Country Club (1981, 1985, 1997).

Steckowych, a Greenland resident, posted a two-day total of 142, which was the lowest score among past champions.

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Former University of New Hampshire goaltender Ty Conklin was among those who failed to make the cut. Conklin, who lives in New Castle, finished with a two-day total of 171 (82-89). Although he gets his handicap at Breakfast Hill Golf Course in Greenland, Conklin said he plays most of his golf in Maine.

Conklin played for six NHL teams during his professional career. He is now a coach in the St. Louis Blues organization.

rbrown@unionleader.com


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