Just sixteen players are left standing after day one of the 11th Connecticut Senior Match Play Championship at Brooklawn Country Club. Philip Perry of Black Hall Club shot a round of two over-par 73 to grab medalist honors and the overall #1 seed.
A total of one hundred-twelve senior amateur golfers began the stroke play portion of the championship vying for one of sixteen coveted spots in match play. Following the qualifying round, four rounds of match play will be conducted over consecutive days, culminating in an eighteen-hole final match on Friday, June 9th.
After a rocky start that included a triple-bogey on the fourth hole, Perry had plenty of work to do in hopes of advancing to match play. In his first trip around the course in nearly twenty years, the 2008 Russell C. Palmer Cup made a remarkable rebound that featured three birdies and just one bogey. On a day where Brooklawn’s fast and difficult greens were the story, Perry was able to navigate his way around the par-71 layout in just 73 strokes.
“After the first few holes, you quickly realize that the course is all about putting,” said Perry. “After I made the triple [bogey] on #4, I just tried to hit to the middle of the green and avoid any big mistakes. Other than a three-putt on, I played well and made a few birdies coming in.”
Perry will face a formidable opponent in Jim Romaniello, the 2014 New England Senior Amateur Champion, who earned the final spot in a 9-for-2 playoff along with Dan Connell. Perry will look to become the first medalist since Dave Szewczul (2014) to claim both medalist honors and the Senior Match Play trophy.
“I think the course sets up great for match play and it should be a lot of fun,” said Perry. “Everyone has a chance and can make birdies and bogies out there.”
Among those to advance included Jack Bracken (2013 Senior Amateur Champion), Richard Stevens (2007 Senior Amateur Champion), Bruce Kraczkowsky (2016 Senior Match Play Champion), and Mark Vasington (2014 Senior Amateur Champion). Representing the host club, Eugene Fabbri and Dan Connell of Brooklawn CC both advanced to match play.
The 2017 Connecticut Senior Match Play Championship is being played at Brooklawn Country Club for the first time in tournament history. The club has hosted four USGA championships – the 1974 U.S. Junior Amateur, 1979 U.S. Women’s Open, 1987 U.S. Senior Open and 2003 U.S. Girls Junior Amateur – and numerous CSGA championships and qualifiers.
The club most recently hosted the 2011 Connecticut Open Championship, won by Frank Bensel of Century Country Club. The present layout was designed by A.W. Tillinghast, one of history’s most famous golf course architects, who also designed Winged Foot Golf Club, Bethpage State Park and Baltusrol Golf Club.
The match play portion of the Senior Match Play Championship begins Thursday, June 7th, with the Round of 16 beginning at 7:30 a.m., followed by the quarterfinals in the afternoon. The tournament will conclude Friday, June 9th, with the semifinal and final matches. More information and complete coverage can be found on the CSGA website at csgalinks.org.
Round of 16 Matches
7:30 a.m. - Philip Perry, Black Hall Club (73) vs. Jim Romaniello (79)
7:40 a.m. - Bruce Kraczkowsky, Blue Fox Run GC (77) vs. Jeff Dolin, Manchester CC (77)
7:50 a.m. - Jerry Mortyko, Hunter GC (76) vs. Eugene Fabbri, Brooklawn CC (78)
8:00 a.m. - Richard Steves, Eclub of Connecticut (76) vs. Patrick McGuiness, Keney GC (78)
8:10 a.m. - Craig DuBois, Fairview Farm GC (74) vs. Dan Connell, Brooklawn CC (79)
8:20 a.m. - Paul Dinardo, Richter Park GC (76) vs. Mark Vasington, Wampanoag CC (77)
8:30 a.m. - Jack Bracken, Hartford GC (75) vs. Tom Brett, Tallwood CC (78)
8:40 a.m. - Stephen Carruthers, H.S. Richardson GC (76) vs. Randy Rizy, Timberlin GC (78)