WEST HARTFORD, CT (October 3, 2016) -- Two players are tied atop the leaderboard at two under par after round one of the 29th Connecticut Mid-Amateur Championship presented by the Lincoln Motor Company. Brent Dietz of Cedar Knob Golf Club and Doug Noble of Wampanoag Country Club will share the overnight lead after firing matching scores of two under-par 70 on day one.
Conducted by the Connecticut State Golf Association, the Connecticut Mid-Amateur Championship is a 54-hole stroke play competition being played at Wampanoag Country Club Monday and Tuesday, October 3rd and 4th. The championship is open to bona fide members of a CSGA club who are twenty-five years of age and over by the start of the tournament.
The weather made for ideal scoring conditions during the first round at the 6,610 yard par 72 layout. While there were only four scores under par, forty-one players made the cut at four over par. Dietz and Noble carded just three bogies between them, showing that steady play was the key to success on day one. Dietz is seeking his second Connecticut Mid-Amateur Championship, having previously captured the title in 2007, while Noble will be playing for his first CSGA major championship. Both players credited their familiarity with the Donald Ross design as their key to success throughout the day. Dietz got off to a self-proclaimed “slow start” before carding an eagle three on the par-5 11th, and a birdie on the par-3 16th. Noble, who hit 15 greens throughout his round, carded two consecutive birdies on the back side en route to his lowest tournament round of the season.
Standing just one stroke back of the leaders are Dave Szewczul of Tunxis Plantation Country Club, and Patrick Griffin of the Golf Club of Avon. Szewczul is coming off a recent victory at the Connecticut Senior Amateur and is looking to capture his second CSGA major championship in consecutive weeks and his first Connecticut Mid-Amateur Championship since 1996. Like Noble, Griffin will be seeking his first CSGA major championship.
Seven players sit just two strokes back at even par 72, including two time Connecticut Mid-Amateur champion Brian Ahern of Wampanoag Country Club (2010 & 2012), and five time past champion Bill Hermanson of the Black Hall Club (1990, 1991, 1992, 1993 & 2001). Rounds two and three will certainly be nothing short of exciting, as there are twenty-five players within four shot of the leaders.
The Connecticut Mid-Amateur dates back to 1981, when the USGA inaugurated its first new championship for amateurs in four years, the U.S. Mid-Amateur. The Mid-Amateur, for amateur golfers of at least 25 years of age, was instituted as a formal national championship for the post-college amateur. Before the arrival of the Mid-Amateur, the post-college player could compete in the Amateur Championship, sometimes successfully, but these older amateurs faced greater odds. While they fit their golf around their work and families, they were most often competing against college golfers, for whom the game is close to a full-time activity.
Seven years after the birth of the U.S. Mid-Amateur, the CSGA instituted its first new championship in six years with the inaugural playing of the Connecticut Mid-Amateur Championship in 1988 at Shennecossett Golf Course, won by Daniel Hendrickson.
The second round begins tomorrow with an 8:30 a.m., with competitors playing 18-holes in the morning followed by the final round in the afternoon.
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