(April 21, 2021) – Two years after hosting the Connecticut Open the Connecticut Amateur heads to Ridgewood Country Club from June 20-24 for the 120th edition. The field will face a stiff challenge on a course that yielded only two under-par scores at the 2020 Connecticut Open.
“The golf course is not particularly long but the greens present a tremendous challenge, independent of the hole locations,” said Ridgewood CC Head Professional Justin Foster. “Hitting the correct quadrant of the green is paramount and anything less than a warm putter will leave you scratching your head. Many would call it a second shot golf course but it’s not smooth sailing off of the tee either with narrow, tree-lined fairways that can pinch and turn at critical spots. The golf requires and inspires creativity with shot-making that makes it an engaging round of golf, every time you play.”
2022 will mark the fourth time that Ridgewood CC has hosted the Connecticut Amateur. Before we start to look ahead to this year’s event let’s take a look back at how the previous three played out.
In 2000 Brian Hedstrom won the second of his two Connecticut Amateur titles in a four-year stretch with an impressive 9&7 victory over David French.
Hedstrom, who survived quarterfinal and semifinal matches that went to extra holes, took control of the championship match early winning the first three holes of the morning round and never looked back.
“To win it twice and to have your name up there twice is a very good feeling,” Hedstrom told the Hartford Courant. “It’s sweeter the second time. It shows that [winning the Connecticut Amateur the first time was] no fluke.”
Jerry Courville, Jr. let the trophy slip away and then wrestled it back. Leading 6 up with 10 holes remaining Courville, Jr. ended up needing a birdie on the 36th hole to defeat Connecticut Golf Hall of Famer Bill Hermanson.
The final hole birdie was a remarkable bounce back for Courville, Jr. With a chance to win the match on the 71st hole with a bogey he three-putted for double-bogey extending the match. With the victory Courville, Jr. joined his father and 1968 winner Jerry Courville, Sr. on the list of champions. The pair became the second father-son duo to win the Connecticut Amateur.
Hermanson would get his Connecticut Amateur title 10 years later winning in 1991 and last year he competed in the Amateur at Hartford Golf Club just a few months shy of his 65th birthday.
In the 1951 Connecticut Amateur James T. Healey won the first of his two titles with an emphatic 10&9 victory over Dr. Ted Lenczyk.
The Connecticut Golf Hall of Famer led by as many as 12 up thanks in large part to a 6 under morning round that was contested in a steady drizzle. “Healey throughout showed the poise of a true champion. He played his wood and iron shots with true marksmanship,” wrote Owen Griffith in the Hartford Courant of Healey’s stellar play.
Lenczyk, a member of the Connecticut Golf Hall of Fame, would go on to have a decorated career winning the 1954 Connecticut Open, reaching the semifinals of the 1954 U.S. Amateur, and capturing the 1961 Connecticut Amateur.
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.