Connecticut’s team of seven junior boys got off to a fast start in the New England Junior Invitational at Mill River CC on Monday with five scores under par in the morning 18. Lead by Chris Fosdick and Matthew Doyle who both fired 3-under par 67s over the 6,308 yard par 70 course, Connecticut jumped out to a 12-shot lead over Massachusetts. Fosdick and Doyle were joined in red figures by Jackson Fretty (68), Alex Aurora (68) and Ben James (69) for an 11-under par team score of 339.
Massachusetts made a run in the afternoon, at one point closing the gap to just 4 shots as the wind picked up and Mill River’s greens became more challenging, but Connecticut rallied behind Ben James who cruised in with 66. Fosdick was solid at 70, Alex Gu, a non-counter in the morning with a 71, also produced a 70, and with Fretty and Doyle fighting back with 71s Connecticut bolstered its lead to an impressive 21 shots with one round to play.
In the Girls competition Rhode Island jumped out to a 10-shot lead over Maine after the first round with Connecticut’s team (Alex Fox, Madeleine Hong, Liz Garfield) in third place. Behind Garfield (75) and Fox (79) Connecticut improved by 14 shots in the afternoon to pass Maine and move into 2nd place. Rhode Island, still dominant, extended their overall lead to 25 shots. Individually, Allison Paik of Rhode Island leads at 76-74 (150). Hong is best overall among Connecticut players, tied for 5th at 80-80 (160).
For Ben James, there is the opportunity for yet another impressive victory. The 16-year old from Milford won the AJGA Killington in June, the Connecticut Junior in July, and the Northern Junior in the first week of August. Also winner of the 2018 New England Junior, James looks to match Madison’s Brian Carlson who was the last player to win this Invitational in back to back years (2012, 2013).
The third and final round begins at 8:00am on Tuesday. To follow live scoring and for complete results go to http://www.negagolf.org/