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Headline: Brother Duos Enjoy Different and Fun Takes Playing Together at the 109th Massachusetts Amateur Championship
For Immediate Release: July 11, 2017
It was a brotherly affair at the 109th Massachusetts Amateur Championship.
Newton, MA — James Turner (Bass Rocks GC) committed to Dartmouth College back in April and it wasn’t until this past Saturday that he learned his younger brother Mark Turner (Bass Rocks GC) would be joining him next fall as a member of Big Green Men’s Golf Team.
On Monday however, the two were competing against each other at the 109th Massachusetts Amateur Championship at Charles River Country Club in back to back groups off the first time.
However, the Bass Rock Golf Club brothers weren’t the only two brothers in the field.
The brothers of Andrew Howard (Norfolk GC) and Dan Howard (Norfolk GC) as well as Charlie Campbell (Captains GC) and Will Campbell (Captains GC) and Ben Spitz (George Wright GC) and David Spitz (South Shore CC) were also in this year's field and looking to earn bragging rights that they could carry home to the family table.
While seeing brothers in the field is not unusual, the fact that three of the trio of older brothers - James, Charlie and Andrew - were all paired together at the 8:50 a.m. tee time while the same could be said for the younger siblings consisting of Mark, Will and Dan at the 9:00 a.m. tee time may have thrown some for a little bit of a loop.
Not by mistake, the two groups off the first tee Monday were featured in back-to-back tee times, which allowed the siblings to keep an eye on each other, if only to see how well the other was doing. And for the families? We’ll call Charles River Country Club the site of a mini reunion.
Each member of the three siblings had a different take on what it was like having their brother in the field, all but a couple yards away.
Playing through the pain of a sore shoulder, this is what 19-year old James said about competing against his brother in the MGA Amateur.
James Turner: It’s not fun when they beat you. It’s good. We always end up caddying for each other and I’ll probably end up on his bag because I didn’t play very well but it’s another level of competition that you keep in the back of your head. We both started around the same time. I was able to start one year because there is an age restriction. When you turn 13, you can be a member at the course. [Mark] picked it up a little bit faster so we’ve always been competitive with each other.
Recent St. John’s Prep graduate Mark, who is 17, had similar remarks.
Mark Turner: It’s nice to have both of us in the tournament. He is actually struggling with a shoulder problem right now and it was good to be able to check in with him as he went along during the day and to see how he was doing.
We’re very competitive. We are always playing against each other up at Bass Rocks in Gloucester and it’s always a battle to see who can edge the other out every day. I kept asking him up on the tee box how he was doing. It was fun.
For the Howard brothers, who both are from Westwood, being able to have their siblings so close on the tee sheet, and the golf course, added extra praise to a week that is traditionally the highlight of one’s summer. While there is a seven-year gap between the two and another brother between them in line, that didn’t stop the praise each had for one another.
Andrew Howard: It’s fun to see familiar faces behind you. Your family is out there watching and it’s nice to have that familiar face because a lot of times in these tournaments, it’s all the best golfers and you might not be at a comfort level. It’s nice to have them out with you.
[Dan] and I are seven years apart but we’re close. He’s my younger brother and there is another in between us. We’ve been battling for quite some time. Just like [James and Mark Turner], I started before Dan but he does everything I do so he picked it up real quick.
You don’t want to say it, but you always know that you want to beat the younger brother.
For younger brother Dan, however, the focus was just on the fun that comes along with the game.
Dan Howard: It’s pretty awesome. It adds a little competition and it’s always good to home with the upper hand on the older brother. When we both play together, it’s always good competition. Always.
And while Charlie and Will Campbell, who both are in grade school in Brewster, are the youngest of the three families and are still new to the MGA Amateur scene, Monday’s start was refreshing for both of them.
Older brother Charlie, the elder by two years, said of playing in the field with his younger brother:
Charlie Campbell: It is just a really cool experience. I am only 16 and [Will] is 14 so we’re both just happy to be here. It’s both our first year’s playing and we’re always ultra-competitive with each other.
Will had similar sentiments.
Will Campbell: It’s really fun. It’s really nice to have us both here playing together. We play together every day and we are very competitive. We are always trying to beat each other. It would be really fun if we could both advance to match play and have to compete against each other.
Monday’s pairings were no fluke on the tee sheet and from what each had to say about the other, having an older – or younger – brother in the field made for a special memory. The trio will all be paired again tomorrow in Round 2 of the 2017 Massachusetts Amateur Championship, looking for what it will take in order to advance to match play on Wednesday.
James, Andrew and Charlie will tee off Hole No. 10 at 1:20 p.m. on Tuesday afternoon, while Mark, Dan and Will will follow suit at 1:30 p.m.