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SOUTHWICK, Massachusetts – On Tuesday at The Ranch Golf Club in Southwick, 30 Father & Daughter teams competed across two divisions in the 37th playing of the Massachusetts Father & Daughter Tournament. At the conclusion of play in the 18-hole event, two teams captured the respect Championship & Forward Divisions to officially be crowned champions.
Leading the charge in the Championship Division was the team of Phil Smith and daughter Morgan Smith, who fired a 3-under 69 on Tuesday to take the top-spot, edging the runner-up by a three-stroke margin. The duo carded three-straight birdies on the front-nine of the their round – on Holes 3-5, respectively – and added a pair of birdies on their way in en route to capturing this year’s title. Their victory Tuesday is the fifth such highlight for the Smith family since 2014. In both 2014 and 2015, father Phil captured the Forward Division title with one of his daughters, first with his daughter Molly then his daughter Morgan. After falling in a playoff in 2016, the eldest Smith captured the forward division with daughter Morgan in 2017 and again in 2018 with his daughter Molly.
Tuesday’s win marks the first-time they have captured the Championship Division since they first began competing in the annual event. The only difference between the two divisions is the distance in which the daughters play from. This year, there was approximately a 500-yard difference between the Championship and Forward Division tees.
Phil Smith won the 2007 Massachusetts Mid-Amateur Championship while his daughter Morgan will be entering her sophomore year at Westford Academy. Morgan, aged 15, recently became the first female to qualify for and compete in the Lowell Cities Golf Tournament earlier this summer, and among her many other accomplishments, was named to both the Boston Herald and Boston Globe Girls’ Golf All-Scholastic teams for the 2018-19 season.
Both Morgan and younger sister Molly also represented Massachusetts at the 2019 Junior Intercity Matches and finished 1-2, respectively in the individual scoring and were responsible nearly half the points garnered by the Bay State team during the matches. The family plays out of Vesper Country Club in Tyngsborough, the host of the 2019 Massachusetts Open Championship.
In the Forward Division of the 2019 Father & Daughter Tournament, the team of Rick Willett and Kaitlyn Willett took the top spot, firing a 3-over 75 in 18-holes to secure the division title. The Charles River Country Club duo birdied four of their first five holes on the day to set the pace against the other seven teams in the division, then added a fifth birdie on the par-4 15th hole to finalize their scoring.
The team outlasted the division runner-up team by two strokes.
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