Oxford, Connecticut (August 16, 2023) – An impressive bogey-free 9-under 63 earned Matt Damico and Bob Murphy the 42nd Connecticut Senior Four-Ball Championship at The Golf Club at Oxford Greens.
“We just hit it good all day,” Matt Damico (Mill River CC) said. “Bob hit 18 greens in regulation so that helps. We just hit it good. We kept balls in play, put balls on the green, took advantage of the par-5s, made some putts, and didn’t make any mistakes. It was as stress-free as it could be.”
Murphy, playing in his first CSGA round of the season after recovering from two torn rotator cuff injuries sustained last fall assisting in Hurricane Ian clean up, wasted no time moving the team into the red as he rolled in his 17-foot birdie putt on the opening par-4.
Both Damico and Murphy, longtime friends who have played competitively together for 40 years, birdied the extremely difficult 535-yard par-5 third to move the team to 2-under. Following a par on the ensuing hole Murphy got scorching hot. On No. 5 he jarred an 18-footer for birdie and then on the par-4 seventh he rolled in another birdie putt this time from 20 feet.
With the greens soft after a soaking rain the day before Murphy (Brownson CC) continued his stellar play by flagging his third shot into the par-5 eighth setting up a tap-in birdie that moved the duo to 5-under. Not done yet Murphy converted a 15-footer for birdie on No. 10 and then stuffed his approach shot on the 330-yard par-4 11th resulting in yet another birdie.
When the dust settled Murphy had birdied seven of the first 11 holes and the team was sitting at 7-under with still seven holes remaining.
Not to be outdone Damico picked up his play down the stretch. Playing the 147-yard par-3 13th Damico stuck his tee shot leading to a birdie and then rinsed and repeated the process with this third shot into the green on the 485-yard par-5 17th. The birdie on the penultimate hole was the ninth and final birdie of a flawless day of golf.
“We didn’t make any big numbers and you have to have two balls in play,” Bob Murphy stated. “As many times as you can keep two balls in each hole it is key. There were some tough pins out there and if you had only one ball you are sweating.”
Three shots back at 6-under in a tie for second place were Indian Hill CC members Brian Hedstrom/Rick Malafronte and the Simsbury Farms GC team of Greg Bergholtz/Lou Perrotta. Fourth place was shared at 5-under by past champions Richard Stevens (Eclub of Connecticut)/David Zeid (Great River GC), the Timberlin GC tandem of Jim Abbott/Robert Veronesi, and Michael DiBattisto (Keney GC)/Mike Dukette (USGA/CSGA GC).
About the Connecticut State Golf Association
The Connecticut Senior Four-Ball Championship is one of 20 championships conducted by the Connecticut State Golf Association. The CSGA functions as an extension of the USGA and provides stewardship for amateur golf in Connecticut. Founded in 1899, it is the country’s oldest state golf association and conducts over 60 Championships, Qualifiers, and One Day Tournaments throughout the year.