(November 21, 2023) – In golf, the mental game is almost as important as the on course game. For Glen Boggini, the 2023 Dick Siderowf Senior Player of the Year winner, that held true. For the last five years Boggini’s wife, Heidi, has been battling Alzheimer’s. Boggini has been there every step of the way helping and caring for his wife while still co-managing his family’s business, the Charles Boggini Company, alongside his brother David.
In between it all, Boggini has been present on the golf course but at the same time removed. His thoughts understandably wandered elsewhere. This past April, Boggini realized it was time for some help. Seeking assistance Boggini found much needed aid when Joyce, a caregiver, moved into his Tolland home to help with Heidi.
“When Joyce arrived at my home she changed everything,” Glen Boggini said. “I found a place after Joyce arrived to go to the golf course and care about golf but not care about it. We all try and find that and I found that place for a certain amount of time this summer where you care about golf, but you don’t. I was playing free and not worrying about every shot. I had good perspectives. If I did good great, if I didn’t then no big deal.”
For Boggini on the golf course in 2023, it was often the latter. “The reason that I was good this year was because my mind was good. If I didn’t have the at-home support of Joyce, I wouldn’t be playing good golf because what my wife is going through is bigger than golf.”
Boggini, who has been playing in CSGA events for more than 30 years and won the 2014 Connecticut Public Links, has been among the top players in the state for years and he entered 2023 set for his second full season in the Siderowf Division. Looking for his breakthrough Boggini found it in a big way when he captured the 17th Senior Match Play Championship at the Black Hall Club in June.
Remarkably for much of the first day qualifying round Boggini was lingering around the cut line but a good bogey from 20 feet on No. 13 flipped a switch as Boggini closed in 1-under to earn the 13-seed. Once Boggini reached match play there was no slowing down the longtime Manchester Country Club and Ellington Ridge Country Club member.
Boggini’s run through the bracket was highlighted by a 3&1 win over Bill Hermanson playing on his home course in the Round of 16 and a 1 up semifinal victory over Mark Vassalotti. In the finals, Boggini rallied late to defeat longtime friend and fellow Ellington Ridge CC member Dave Olender in 19 holes.
“I would say for the course of the week I was pretty resilient,” said Boggini. “During match play, I was up or down but I was always in the right place mentally to just keep playing.”
In addition, to his major championship triumph Boggini picked up two One Day Tournament wins to help bolster his Siderowf Player of the Year campaign.
“Any time you win a golf tournament it is special. It is rare. It just doesn’t happen. I play with a lot of good friends in the One Day Tournaments and it is a way to stay sharp and keep your mind in tournament golf. They are fun to play in and anytime you can win a golf tournament it helps your confidence,” said Boggini.
The stellar play throughout the year also led Boggini to a spot on his second Tri-State team. Remarkably despite all the success Massachusetts has had in the event Boggini has only competed on winning teams. First in 2018 and then again in 2023 at Wampanoag Country Club.
“The Tri-States is a great event,” Boggini said. “I’ve been fortunate to be on two winning teams and it is rare because we all know how good Massachusetts is. But the team that showed up at Wampanoag CC this year was really good.”
Boggini was introduced to the game of golf at a young age when his grandfather and father put a club in his hand. A good high school athlete Boggini played golf at Manchester High School but it wasn’t until his late 20s that his competitive career took off.
“It is a way to stay competitive,” said Boggini when explaining why he started playing in CSGA events. “I have been playing sports my whole life. I played basketball, soccer, and those sports you can only play for so long but golf is a game for life. The other thing is the friends that you make on the golf course are amazing. Right now [as we record this interview] I am in Brazil playing in Brazilian Confederation of Golf events. I had business down in Brazil for 15 years and through a friend we got talking about golf and he said why don’t you come play at this course and then it just snowballed. I have been playing in these events for years and the guys I have met here have been my best friends forever. So, I think it is about being competitive and the friendships you make.”
For Boggini the ability to compete and the strength of the friendships he has made throughout his life on the golf course are more important than ever. Winning the 2023 Dick Siderowf Player of the Year Award is evidence of that in more ways than one.
“It is a tremendous honor because when you look at the guys who have won this award it is the who’s who of Connecticut golf,” Boggini expressed. “So, to join that list I am extremely grateful. The players on that list are great and to join them is special.”
About the Connecticut State Golf Association
The Connecticut State Golf Association 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.