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Headline: Dean and Alia Godek Win Forward Division of Massachusetts Father & Daughter Championship in Extra Holes
For Immediate Release: August 11, 2016
Dean and Alia Godek won the Forward Division of the MGA Father & Daughter Championship held at The Haven Country Club.
Boylston, MA — Two holes. Two putts. That was the difference maker for the team of Dean Godek (Agawam Municipal) and Alia Godek (Agawam Municipal) in the Forward Division of the Massachusetts Father & Daughter Championship, held Thursday at The Haven Country Club.
Through 17 holes of play in the select drive, alternate shot format event, the pair from Agawam was sitting at 4-over par with one hole to go. But then the younger Godek did something that her father was waiting for the whole round. They made birdie on the final hole, their first birdie since the two made birdie on the 500-yard, par 5 2nd hole.
Following a bogey and a double bogey that they thought would be costly, Alia sunk a putt on 18. It was a shot that ended up being a lot more important than they thought at the time.
“We birdied 18 and didn’t think that would be enough,” said Dean after finishing with a final score of 3-over par 75.
But as the remaining groups finished their rounds, one thought kept becoming more and more obvious. They weren’t done playing yet.
The Godeks finished tied for first with two teams - Philip Smith (Longmeadow GC) & Molly Smith (Mount Pleasant GC) - the 2014 champions of this event - and John Hadges (Thorny Lea GC) & Tate Hadges (Thorny Lea GC) and advanced to a sudden-death playoff to decide the 2016 champion.
“I was nervous,” said Alia, who had never been in a playoff before.
But for the two-time runner up in the same event, she put her nerves aside and took to the tee on the first hole to start the playoff.
After “three hard practice swings” prior to teeing off, the junior Godek drove the ball to 103 yards short of the hole, an estimated distance of 215 yards from the red tees that set her father up for the second shot.
“I told her to just try and hit a good shot,” said Dean. “Then I hit a decent sand wedge in there.”
That brought the ball onto the green about 25 feet north of the pin.
“We just wanted to get the ball close to the hole,” said Dean on the team’s strategy for the playoff hole. “If it goes in, great. If it doesn’t, we’ll just tap it in for par.”
Having made bogey on the first hole to begin the day, which left dad saying, “this wasn’t our day,” the team countered by making the hole count the second time around.
After one of their opponents had already finished at par and the other was about to make par, The elder Godek said, “I just told her that we needed to try and make a birdie on the first hole and she did.”
His daughter approached the ball and without much hesitation, shot it towards the hole. Alia’s shot from 25 feet out continued to roll, all the way to the cup. It was a shot that sealed the victory for Alia and ensured the team wouldn’t be runner up this year.
Alia, who won the junior division of the Massachusetts Women’s Golf Association Mother Daughter Championship with Dean’s wife Pina earlier this summer, was just happy to finish on top after a long day of golf in the sweltering heat.
“This time I had to do good,” said Alia in reference to her final putt in the playoff. “It felt great.”
While she will have some time off, Dean will be right back on the course with his 17-year old son, Matteo, who will compete in the Massachusetts Father & Son Championship, to be held at Plymouth Country Club next week.
For complete coverage of the event, make sure to check the MGA’s website, www.mgalinks.org and follow us on social media (@mgalinks) and #MassFD.