Keith Stone (New Hampshire Golf Association Photo)
Keith Stone turned 55 years old in July, making him eligible to compete in senior competitions, and two months later captured his first New Hampshire Senior Championship title.
As the only player under par in the 36-hole championship held at Canterbury Woods Country Club, Stone fired a final round 4-under 68 to finish at three-under par for the tournament to win by five strokes over the next competitor.
With a fist pump to close out his win, Stone joins elite company in winning the New Hampshire Senior. Dave Larrivee posted the only under-par score of the first round of competition, which gave him a two-stroke lead heading into the final round.
Stone actually started three shots back of Larrivee to start but quickly began to close the gap on the front nine of the final round.
“I parred one and two, but then I birdied three and four, so that got me going”, Stone said following his win. While Stone was two under after four holes, Larrivee was one over par after making a bogey on the par-5, No. 4 at Canterbury Woods.
Bob Kearney was also in the mix throughout the entire tournament; he started his round strong with a birdie on the opening hole, which put him in a tie for the lead after four holes with Larrivee and Stone.
The leaderboard continued to shift from there. Kearney held the lead after No. 5, where Larrivee made a double bogey, and Stone made a bogey.
But Stone bounced back with a birdie on the short par-3, No. 6, to join Kearney at the top.
With a fantastic up and down on Hole No. 7, Stone was able to maintain his position and finally grabbed the solo lead with a birdie on No. 9 after an aggressive second shot in while Kearney settled for a bogey.
The back nine is where Stone started to extend his lead even more.
“I made a birdie on No. 11, and from then on, I knew the rest of the course set up well for me," Stone said.
Stone made one more bogey and an additional birdie, making that six birdies on the day to get himself to a four-shot lead.
At points, that lead shifted to three, but never less than that for the remainder of the round as Kearney struggled a little more on the back nine, making three bogeys, including the closing two holes.
Reflecting back on how he played this week, Stone added, “I hit the ball really well. For some reason, this course sets up well for me.”
Over the course of the 36-hole tournament, Stone recorded an impressive nine birdies, proving that this course fits his game very well.
As a newly turned 55-year-old, Stone is thrilled to be playing well enough to win against a competitive field like this.
On the right day that I had to play really well, I did it so that was very rewarding for me.”View results for New Hampshire Senior
ABOUT THE New Hampshire Senior
Tournament is 36 holes stroke play, gross,
in four age divisions: 55-62, 63-69, 70-74,
75 and up. All gross division players will
play from back tees. Any tie for overall first
will be played off at sudden death stroke
play after regular play has finished.
Entries are open to male members of
member NHGA Clubs who are legal
residents of New Hampshire. Applicants
must be 55 years of age.
View Complete Tournament Information