Matthew Organisak Goes The Distance To Win 112th Massachusetts Amateur - MASSGOLF

matthew organisak GOES THE DISTANCE TO WIN 112TH MASSACHUSETTS AMATEUR

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JULY 17, 2020

MARION, Massachusetts – When he held the Massachusetts Cup for the first time, Sudbury’s Matthew Organisak (Nashawtuc Country Club) looked down at it and stared. The past winners of this trophy include Mass Golf Hall of Famers Francis Ouimet, Fred Wright and Frank Vana, Jr.

After battling Waltham’s Nick Maccario (Bradford Country Club) through a grueling 36 holes in the Massachusetts Amateur championship match at the Kittansett Club — first with heavy rain and then with heavy wind — the left-handed phenom earned himself a spot on the trophy with a 2-up victory that ended with Maccario conceding the 18th hole.

“It’s truly special to be able to say that my name will be on this trophy pretty soon,” said Organisak, a 22-year-old recent graduate of Emory University. “Something that I feel even better about and even more proud and happy about is that the Nashawtuc Country’s Club’s name will be on this trophy. Every member over there has always been so supportive and they have been all week you know I got a bunch of texts yesterday, telling me good luck tomorrow.”

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The first 18 holes ended in a tie, with both men winning five holes apiece. Organisak won four of the first six holes over the next 18 holes and never trailed. He birdied the 9th (27th overall) and 10th (28th) to take a 4-up lead. Maccario won the 12th (30th) and 13th (31st) and made birdie on the 17th (35th) to cut it to 1 up, but Organisak was on the 18th (36th) green in three, and Maccario conceded after missing his par putt.

Sudbury’s Matthew Organisak holds The Massachusetts Cup for the first time. (David Colt)

It was an inspiring win for Organisak, who was playing in his first tournament since COVID-19 caused the cancelation of the rest of his college season.

“Last week I started putting myself in preparation mode and started really thinking about shots and things and places and decisions that I’d have to make in the tournament and tournament play,” Organisak said. “I played pretty well on Monday, and I went home and I packed a big bag with a lot of clothes. I said, ‘I hope I got to use all these,’ and I don’t have any clean clothes left so that’s a good thing. I just had a good feeling. You know if you come in and you believe in yourself, you never know.”

This is the first state amateur win for Organisak becomes the only person to win it while representing Nashawtuc. He’s the first to win the Ouimet Memorial Tournament and then ensuing the Mass Amateur since PGA Professional Jim Salinetti (1999-00).

Organisak also joins Patrick Frodigh (2018) and Ben Spitz (2006) as the only left-handed golfers to win it since 2000.

Maccario, the 2019 Mass Mid-Amateur champion, said the hardest part of the tournament was Friday.

“Playing and keeping the adrenaline and the energy up for 36 is tough,” he said. “I’ve never had to do it while playing the same person. It was tough and the weather today felt like we were not in the U.S. We had a little bit of everything. I think that was probably the toughest thing was just keeping your head in it for eight hours.”

Nick Maccario reads a putt while taking cover during the morning round. (David Colt)

This final match concludes the week-long competition, which was the first statewide championship event held during the COVID-19 era. Its hosts were The Kittansett Club and The Bay Club at Mattapoisett, the latter of which co-hosted the two days of stroke play. Menachem thanked Greg Yeomans (General Manager/Director Of Golf), John O’Connor (Golf Course Superintendent) and Ben Egan (Head Golf Professional) and all the staff at The Bay Club, as well as the entire Kittansett staff, including James Burns (Club Manager), John Tamburro (Head Golf Professional), John Kelly (Superintendant), Mike Milhench (Club President) and Duncan Gratton (Event Chairman).

“We could not have done this without our two host clubs this week,” said Jesse Menachem, Executive Director/CEO of Mass Golf. “It just felt right this week with the Amateur championship, just tremendous to get to this point in the calendar and crown our 2020 champion.”

LIVE STREAM: Friday’s final match was streamed on Facebook Live. To get to the Mass Golf Facebook page, CLICK HERE.

BRACKET: Here’s how we got to crowning a champion. To view all the scores, CLICK HERE

FRIDAY HIGHLIGHTS

First 18 Holes

The morning round, which began at 8 a.m., brought the most amounts of rain, with a downpour starting around the 8th hole. The wind was also very still early, leaving the players swatting at bugs in the early holes.

Organisak won the first two holes, but Maccario took his only lead by winning four of the next six holes with pars (3, 5, 6 and 8). Organisak won the ninth to get within 1 before the players took a 15-minute rain delay by going into the fitness center to dry off and wait for the weather to pass before making the turn.

Organisak got even on the 13th hole, a dogleg right. Both players hit into the right bunker, but Organisak hit a wonderful bunker shot over the mound to a few feet and made the putt. Despite hitting into the fescue on the 16th, he got to the green and won it with a par. However, Maccario took the 18th with a par, after Organisak got caught in the rough.

“To be even with 18 left, I’m happy,” Maccario said at the mid-point.

Second 18 Holes

Following a 45-minute break, Organisak went out and once again took the first few holes, including a birdie on the second.

This time, he didn’t look back, and the match was never tied after that.

Organisak won the fifth and sixth with pars, before Maccario began to make a comeback, making birdie on the seventh by rolling his approach shot to 5 feet. He then made his best shot of the tournament. On the par-3 eighth, he had a difficult lie above a bunker and flubbed a left-handed shot. However, he got to flat ground and chipped in to save par and bring it to 2 down.

“It definitely gave me a bunch of energy because at that point,” Maccario said. “If he makes that putt things start to really get out of hand. Being I think it would have been 5 down through 8 so that was a good way to flip the table, and, you know, really kind of get back on track.”

Not to be outdone, though, Organisak responded with his best birdie putt of the final, knocking a difficult 35-foot uphill, winding putt from the front-right corner of the green to make birdie and bring it to 3 up at the 27th-hole mark.

But it wasn’t over yet, as Maccario took the 13th and 14th by making par. Still, Organisak leaned on his putter down the stretch. Though Maccario made a birdie on the 15th, Organisak hit a clutch 8-footer to equalize and yelled “money” after it dropped into the cup.

Despite hitting into the left fescue again on the 16th, he hit to the greenside fairway on the right, chipped to about 3 feet and shouted “Let’s go!” as he hit another birdie putt.

“I certainly know my putting kept me in it all week,” Organisak said. “I really putted well in all my matches and certainly down the stretch today.

“The wind was blowing hard, and I hit some golf shots that I thought were good and that didn’t end up great, and I was able to put myself in a spot where I could make a putt,” he continued. “That was by far the most important part. These greens are so tough, and they’re so pure, too, and you just got to get below the hole, you got to be putting uphill, and I was lucky enough to put myself in some spots where I could make some putts, and I executed and that’s always a good feeling.”

Maccario gave himself a chance on the 17th with the wind blowing directly into the players. Maccario hit a 6-iron from 145 yards out, saying he was playing it like 185, to hit a beautiful shot 5 feet in front of the cup. He had the advantage of hitting after Organisak, who hit an 8-iron that was way short of the green after it got caught in the wind.

Organisak still stepped to the 18th tee and fired a shot right down the middle, and his second to the greenside rough on the left. Maccario meanwhile was off in between the 18th and 1st holes on the left and topped his second shot into the sandy native area between fairways. He almost stuck his 3rd shot on the green, but it fell off the back about 10 feet from the pin. After missing the uphill putt and the one after, he conceded to Organisak, who left himself a couple feet away on his birdie putt.

CHAMPIONSHIP CEREMONY

Hear what Matthew Organisak had to say after winning the Massachusetts Amateur championship.

WHAT’S NEXT

Both Maccario and Organisak will play in next week’s New England Amateur championship from July 21-23 at Concord Country Club,  nearby to Organisak’s home course of Nashawtuc Country Club. Rutgers sophomore Xavier Marcoux (Nashawtuc CC), who made the Round of 16 at this year’s Mass Amateur, is the defending champion.

“I’ve caddied at that golf course for a long time, and I’ve been there, played a bunch, so I’m very excited for that,” Organisak said.

Unlike Mass Amateur stroke play, Maccario and Organisak are not in the same group when the New England Amateur begins Tuesday.

NEXT STOP FOR MASS AMATEUR

Nick Maccario hinted that next year’s Mass Amateur site might make for a great comeback story. In September, he won the Mass Mid-Amateur championship by a commanding 15 strokes at Brae Burn Country Club in West Newton.

The 2021 Mass Amateur will take place at Brae Burn, the site where Maccario set the competitive course record of 64 in the opening round of the Mid-Am.

“We’re going to try to regroup next year and get back to the final,” Maccario said.

To see tee times for next week’s New England Amateur, CLICK HERE

US SENIOR AMATEUR: KITTANSETT 2022

The Kittansett Club was founded in 1922, and to commemorate its centennial anniversary in 2022, the club will host the U.S. Senior Amateur.

It’ll be the first USGA event held at Kittansett Club since the 1953 Walker Cup Match, when the top U.S. amateurs defeated Great Britain & Ireland, 9-3. The 10-man USA Team featured eight USGA champions, including future U.S. Open champions Gene Littler (1961) and Ken Venturi (1964) and future USGA president William C. Campbell. The club has also hosted several USGA qualifying events, most recently for the 2013 U.S. Senior Open.

The best senior amateur players in the world are headed to The Kittansett Club in 2022. (David Colt)

The U.S. Senior Amateur is open to amateur golfers who have reached age 55 on or before the start of the championship who have a Handicap Index not exceeding 7.4. The championship features 36 holes of stroke play before the field is cut to the low 64 scorers for match play.

“We look forward to a great test of golf for the world’s best senior amateur players and are confident this course will live up to expectations in identifying a worthy champion and providing a memorable experience for all,” said Stuart Francis, President of the USGA.

The U.S. Open will also be held at The Country Club in Brookline in 2022.

ABOUT THE AMATEUR CHAMPIONSHIP

This year marks the 112th playing of the Massachusetts Amateur Championship. The first Massachusetts Amateur, played in 1903 at Myopia Hunt Club, was conducted for a total of 54 golfers. The championship has been conducted every year except for 1917 and 1918 and 1942-45 due to WWI and WWII, respectively. It is the oldest of Mass Golf’s Championships. Only the Massachusetts Women’s Amateur (est. 1900) has been contested for longer.

Eligibility: Entries are open to amateur golfers who have an active Mass Golf/GHIN Handicap Index at any public, private, semi-private, municipal or non-real estate Mass Golf member course/club not exceeding 4.4 (as determined by the May 21, 2020 Handicap Revision), or who have completed their handicap certification.

Prizes: The Massachusetts Cup and a gold medal will be presented to the Champion. Merchandise certificates will be awarded to the 32 Match Play Qualifiers and are only redeemable at the host site.

SOCIAL MEDIA

For complete coverage of the Massachusetts Amateur Championship, visit MassGolf.org or follow Mass Golf on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @PlayMassGolf and by using the hashtag, #MassAm.