BROOKLINE resident Colin McCaigue learned something during this year’s New Hampshire Golf Association Amateur Championship. He learned that among golfers in the field 19 and younger, he posted the lowest score during the tournament’s two rounds of stroke play.
That distinction earned him the Ty Abate Award, which is presented annually by the Union Leader to the golfer 19 and under who has the lowest score during the qualifying rounds. Abate was a Union Leader sports writer best known for his golf coverage.
McCaigue, who is 17, qualified for match play as the No. 35 seed after he shot 152 — 8 over par — during stroke play. He lost to Passaconaway Country Club’s Jared LaMothe, the 1999 State Am champion, 1-up during Wednesday’s round of match play. McCaigue was 2-down after two holes, but the match was even headed to the 18th tee.
“My goal, first and foremost, was to make the cut, go to match play and see how far it could take me” McCaigue said. “(LaMothe) is a former pro and he was very gracious. It was a dog fight.”
McCaigue, who will be a senior at the Derryfield School in Manchester, was playing in the State Am for the second time. He failed to make the cut last year.
Although he’s a member Townsend (Mass.) Ridge Country Club, McCaigue was representing Amherst Country Club in this year’s tournament.
“Amherst is Townsend’s sister club and I’m allowed to hold a handicap at both courses,” McCaigue explained. “I have to choose between (playing in) the Massachusetts Amateur or the New Hampshire State Am.”
McCaigue also plays baseball and basketball for Derryfield. He took some solace in the fact that he scored better than Derryfield Country Club’s Dan Arvanitis — his high school golf coach — in this year’s State Am. Arvanitis, who won the State Am at North Conway CC in 2001, finished stroke play at 154.
“I beat him in the Am, but he usually gets the best of me out on the course,” McCaigue said. “Overall I came away pretty satisfied with how I played in the tournament.”
McCaigue will be presented the Ty Abate Award at The Leaders, the Union Leader’s annual sports awards dinner held each February.
This year’s New England PGA Championship will be held at Concord Country Club and Manchester Country Club on Aug. 5-7. Hooksett’s Rich Berberian Jr., won last year’s tournament, which was held in Rhode Island. Berberian shot a 7-under-par 207 at Quidnessett Country Club and Warwick Country Club.
Last year’s win was the third New England PGA Championship title for Berberian, who grew up in Derry. His father, Rich Berberian Sr., was the PGA professional at Hoodkroft Country Club.
Somersworth native Kirk Hanefeld will also be attempting to win this tournament for the fourth time. Hanefeld is coming of a strong performance in the U.S. Senior Open at the Warren Course at Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind. Matt Arvanitis (Southern New Hampshire University coach), Cory Mansfield (Derryfield Country Club), Todd Rollins (Laconia Country Club), Rich Thibeault (Concord Country Club), Dan Wilkins (Laconia Country Club), and Danny Kish (The Atkinson Resort and Country Club) are among the other golfers with ties to New Hampshire who could contend.
The New England PGA Championship has a purse of $90,000, and the top 12 finishers will qualify for the 2020 PGA Professional Championship and have a chance to advance to the 2020 PGA Championship at Harding Park in San Francisco.
The New England Women’s Golf Association formally announced last week that the NEWGA Championship will be managed and operated by the New England Golf Association beginning in 2020.
“It is a privilege to be entrusted with the administration of such an illustrious event,” NEGA executive secretary Harry McCracken said. “We will continue to run the (NEWGA) Championship to the standard the NEWGA representatives have set and to the degree that the competitors deserve.”
The NEWGA Championship will be renamed the New England Women’s Amateur Championship and will continue to rotate between Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont.
“Adding our women’s championship to the NEGA’s lineup will ensure that we will continue to have a consistent, professionally run New England Championship,” NEWGA president Leslie Logan said. “The NEGA’s resources should allow us to draw an even more competitive field into the future. Having one organization offering amateur, senior, women’s and junior championships in New England makes the most sense.”
The New England Women’s Amateur Championship is the fifth event added to the NEGA calendar, joining the New England Amateur Championship, the New England Junior Amateur Invitational, New England Girls’ Junior Amateur Invitational and New England Senior Amateur Championship.
The NEGA, which was established in 1926, is made up of representatives from the golf association in each of the six New England states.
Results from the Valley Seniors Golf Association event held at Stonebridge Country Club in Goffstown:
Top 10 gross scores: Dave Johnson (Walpole) 80, Rick Marasa (Springfield, Vt.), 83, Jim Barry (Bedford), 84, Paul Lazdowski (New London) 85, Paul Cody (Antrim) 88, Richard Hill (Marlborough) 90, Ed Moody (Bow) 93, Jack Martin (Henniker) 93, Bob Southall (Antrim) 93, Dan Zapton (Hopkinton) 95.
Score adjusted by four strokes because of difference in course rating from tees played
Top gross score (ages 57-74): Marasa (83), Barry 84.
Top net score (ages 57-74): Lazdowski (70), Marty Mahoney/Keene (71).
Top gross score (ages 75-87); Johnson 76, Martin 89.
Top net score (ages 75-87): Ed Moody/Bow (69), Charles MacVeagh/Marlborough (69).
Closest to the pin: Lazdowski.
Future sites for the New Hampshire Golf Association’s Amateur Championship: 2020 (Nashua CC), 2021 (North Conway CC), 2022 (Abenaqui CC), 2023 (Manchester CC), 2024 (Concord CC), 2025 (TBA), 2026 (Cochecho CC).
New Hampshire Golf Calendar
July 15-17: Mike Ryan Memorial Tournament (Derryfield CC)
July 16: NHWGA Senior/Legend/Classic (Atkinson CC)
July 18: NHGA Junior Tour (Hooper Golf Course)
July 22: NHGA Junior Tour (North Conway CC)
July 23: NHGA Junior Tour (Nippo Lake Golf Club)
July 23-25: New England Amateur (Quechee Club)
July 24: Parent-Child Championship (Stonebridge CC)
July 29-31: Junior Championship (Beaver Meadow GC)
Aug. 5-7: NHWGA Amateur Championship (Breakfast Hill)
Aug. 6-8: Stroke Play Championship (Green Meadow GC)
Aug. 11-13: New England Junior Amateur (Mill River CC)
Aug. 21-22: Women’s Mid-Amateur Championship (Baker Hill GC)
Aug. 27: Stroke Play Series (Intervale CC)
Sept. 17-18: New England Senior Amateur (Biddeford-Saco CC)