OUTSIDE the New Hampshire Golf Association’s amateur championship, you’ll have a hard time finding a better New Hampshire golf tournament than the Seacoast Amateur, a three-day event that kicks off on Friday.
One of the things that sets the Seacoast Am apart from many tournaments is the number of quality golfers in the field. Not only does it attract some of the top New Hampshire Seacoast players, it also attracts some from Maine.
Registrations are accepted from golfers affiliated with the following golf courses: Abenaqui Country Club, Breakfast Hill Golf Club, Cochecho Country Club, Exeter Country Club, Farmington Country Club, The Golf Club of New England, The Ledges Golf Course, Nippo Lake Golf Club, Pease Golf Course, The Oaks Golf Links, Portsmouth Country Club, Rochester Country Club, Rockingham Country Club, Wentworth by the Sea Country Club and the York Golf and Tennis Club.
This year’s Seacoast Am field includes the two-time State Am champion Craig Steckowych (Portsmouth CC) and 1999 National Champion Jared LaMothe (Portsmouth CC). The Oaks Golf Links member Harvin Groft, who won Seacoast Am last year and advanced to the State Am semi-finals, is in the field again this year.
Other celebrities who will take part in the 2021 tournament include: Brett Wilson (New England Golf Club), Nick McLaughlin (Portsmouth CC), Jamie Ferullo (Rochester CC), Nick Kalil (Portsmouth CC), Ryan Quinn (Breakfast Hill) and Tyler Rivers (York Golf and Tennis Club).
Wilson has won the Seacoast Am five times a record. McLaughlin won the Massachusetts Amateur Championship in 2015.
“If you look at the State Am and the Mid-Am, once you get into the matchplay, most of the top people are Seacoast people,” said Rochester Country Club Club Troy Joncaswho serves as chairman of the Seacoast Amateur Committee. “It makes good golf. The winner is usually even par or 1-under in the three rounds. “
The tournament is played every year on three Seacoast courses. This year’s tournament starts at Abenaqui CC, moves to Breakfast Hill GC in Greenland for the second round on Saturday and ends at Portsmouth CC on Sunday. After the second round it is reduced to the low 48 points plus a tie. The top runners will last for the lap on Sunday.
In addition to the individual winner, Seacoast Am has a senior competition (55 and older) and a team competition. The Senior Champion receives the Tony Loch Trophy, named after the former Portsmouth CC professional; and the Kay Stulb Memorial Team Champion is determined by taking the low three scores daily from golfers who represent the same club. The club with the lowest total of three rounds wins the team championship.
The Seacoast Am has also expanded its social media presence.
“We have the first tee-shots streamed live on Facebook,” said Joncas. “Also some of the 18th green putt-outs. So if people don’t make it, they can see the first tee and the 18th green on Sunday.”
Joncas said Abenaqui CC’s Fletcher Sokul is another golfer to watch out for this year. Sokul is playing at Seacoast Am for the first time.
“I would expect him to cause a sensation,” said Joncas. “I would say there are at least eight people who can win it this year.”
New resident of Ipswich Mike Martel was the best finisher in New Hampshire in this week’s Massachusetts Open Championship, a three-day event that ended on Wednesday. Martel tied for 11th place with a 1 over par 211 at Oak Hill Country Club in Fitchburg.
Rob Labritz, a PGA professional from Pound Ridge, NY, won the tournament with a total of 205 over three days. Martel took his first professional win by winning the Mass. Open 2019.
Rules question: A player intends to take relief for a ball under repair on a steep slope in the ground. There is a large bush near the relief area that the player must drop the ball into. It is likely that the ball will come to rest in the relief area after being released. However, it is also likely that the ball will move out of the relief area before the stroke is taken and come to rest near the socket. The player breaks off a small portion of the bush that could affect his post-relief posture should the ball move. What’s the verdict? (Read on for the answer.)
As a reminder, the New Hampshire Women’s Golf Association 2021 Amateur Championship will be held August 2-4 at Laconia Country Club. Interested parties can register until July 17th. Registration can be completed on the NHWGA website.
Answer to rules question: The player receives the general penalty for changing physical conditions to affect where the player’s ball might go or come to rest if it moves before the stroke is taken (Rule 8.2).
Source: USGA Rules of Golf.
NH GOLF CALENDAR
June 21st: Junior Team Championship (TBA)
June 22: NHWGA President’s Cup (Pease GC)
June 22: NHGA State Am Qualification (Green Meadow GC)
23rd June: NHGA State Am Qualification (Breakfast Hill GC)
25th June: NHGA Junior Tour Mini Series (interval CC)
25th June: NHGA State Am Qualification (Bretwood GC / South)
June 27th: NHGA State Am Qualification (Beaver Meadow GC)
June 28th: Hoodkroft Junior Open
June 28th: NHGA State Am Qualification (Abenaqui CC)
June 28th: NHGA State Am Qualifiers (Maplewood GC)
28.-30. June: New England Ladies Amateur (Agawam Hunt / East Providence, RI)
June 29th: NHGA State Am Qualification (Loudon CC)
June 30th: Junior Tour (Owl’s Nest)
July 1: NHWGA Junior Championship (Beaver Meadow GC)
July 1: Miniseries (Rockingham CC)
6-7 July: Junior All-Star Championship (Mt.Washington Resort GC)
8th of July: Junior Tour (Candia Woods)
12-17 July: NHGA Amateur Championship (North Conway CC)
19.-21. July: Mike Ryan Memorial Championship (Derryfield CC)
20.-22. July: New England Amateur (Great River Golf Club / Milford, Connecticut)
22nd of July: Junior Tour (Keene CC)
July 26th: Junior Tour (Breakfast Hill GC)
July 27th: Junior Tour (Loudon CC)
2nd-4th August: Junior Championship (Pease GC)
2nd-4th August: NHWGA Amateur Championship (Laconia CC)
15.-17. August: New England Junior Amateur (Val Halla / Cumberland Golf Course, Maine)
August 19th: Junior invitation (TBA)
14.-15. September: New England Senior Amateur (Manchester Country Club / Manchester, Vt.)