- Golfer Benefits
BREWSTER, Massachusetts – It’s a special moment when golfers qualify for their first USGA® event. But it’s even better when that national championship is in their home state.
With three spots in this year’s U.S. Senior Amateur at The Kittansett Club in Marion on the line, former Mass Golf President Tom Bagley, of Concord, and Michael Boden, of Sandwich, advanced through Monday’s 18-hole qualifier at Captains Golf Course (Starboard Course). Scott Copeland, a member of Old Sandwich Golf Club, tied Boden for medalist honors at 3-under 69 as his group was the first in the clubhouse among the field of 77. Copeland lives in Florida but owns a home in Chatham, where he spends most of the summer months.
All three are now set to participate in their first USGA event — the 67th U.S. Senior Amateur, which will take place August 27-September 1 at Kittansett. It will be the first USGA event hosted by the club since the 1953 Walker Cup. To learn more about The Kittansett Club’s preparation for the U.S. Senior Amateur, CLICK HERE
Tom Bagley a longtime member of Concord Country Club and Oak Hill Country Club (Fitchburg), hasn’t been playing much golf in the past week. As the Official In Charge at last week’s 114th Massachusetts Amateur Championship at Concord, he’d been coordinating with the club and event staff to make sure everything was organized for the entire week. Bagley said he didn’t enter this qualifier with any expectations, but by playing steady golf, he’s being rewarded with his biggest playing opportunity to date.
“Kittansett and The Country Club have always been my two favorite golf courses,” Bagley said. “To play at Kittansett is just tremendous.”
Bagley didn’t have his best day hitting off the tee, but he was solid with the putter all day. He made a 20-footer for birdie on the second hole after opening with a bogey and also birdied the 4th and 6th holes. After coming about a foot short of a birdie on the 17th, Bagley finished with a birdie by hitting a chip shot from the rough to about a 1.5 feet for an easy tap-in birdie.
“I tried to stay in the moment and make a which birdies,” Bagley said. “I made some good [par] saves and made a long birdie putt on the second which got the round back in shape and just hung on from there.”
Bagley served as president of what was then the Massachusetts Golf Association from 2016-2017. He joins the list of other past presidents who have played in USGA events, including Paul Evans (Duxbury Yacht Club), who qualified for the U.S. Senior Amateur in 2001.
View this post on Instagram
Scott Copeland (Old Sandwich Golf Club) got himself some redemption after trying to qualify for last year’s U.S. Mid-Amateur at Bayberry Hills Golf Course. Copeland came up a stroke short a year ago and lost in a playoff. This year, however, he left little doubt, racing out to a 4-under score through his first nine holes (back nine). His only blemish was on the final hole, when he topped his drive and wasn’t able to scramble for par. Still, Copeland’s score of 3-under was only matched by Boden.
“I was super relaxed out there for some reason and hit it in the fairway all day and made a few putts,” said Copeland, who’s originally from Ohio. “I made a couple of good putts. It was out there for you. The golf course was in the best shape I’ve seen it in a long time.”
Michael Boden (Sandwich Hollows Golf Club), who turned the minimum age 55 in June, put together a spectacular round that included holing out with a 6-iron for eagle on the 425-yard, par-4 16th. The former golf professional out of Hyannisport Club also managed birdie on the par-3 11th, the par-5 18th and closed it out with an 18-foot birdie on the 9th to split medalist honors with Copeland at 3-under.
Luc Guilbault, of Quebec, Canada, pocketed a pair of birdies on holes 6 and 7 to finish 1-under and locked up the first alternate spot by himself.
Joe Walker (Dennis Pines Golf Club) sank a 15-foot birdie putt on his final hole to bring him into a six-way tie with David Pierce (Thorny Lea Golf Club), Dave Turgeon (Norton Country Club), Domenic Petruzzelli (Thomson Country Club), Brian Secia (Plymouth Country Club), and Phil Pleat (New Hampshire). After an exhausting nine-hole playoff for the second alternate spot, Secia and Petruzzelli ended up flipping a coin, with Secia winning it.
QUALIFIERS (Names; Cities)
Scott Copeland (Miami Beach, FL); 69 (-3)
Michael Boden (Sandwich, MA); 69 (-3)
Tom Bagley (Concord, MA); 70 (-2)
ALTERNATES (In Order)
Luc Guilbault (Drummondville, Quebec, Canada); 71 (-1)
Brian Secia* (Plymouth, MA); 72 (E)
*Won In A 6-for-1 playoff
Venue: The Kittansett Club
Architect: William Flynn and Frederic C. Hood (renovations by Gil Hanse)
Dates of Championship: August 27-September 1
Entries Excepted: 2,865 (record, old mark was set in 2021 at 2,565)
Field Size: 156 competitors
Yardage/Par: 6,632 yards/Par 71 (Subject to Change)
Spectators: Admission is free of charge and spectators are encouraged to attend.
Eligibility: Open to any golfer who is 55 years of age as of August 27 and whose Handicap Index does not exceed 7.4
2021 Championship: Gene Elliott, of West Des Moines, Iowa, finally claimed that elusive USGA title by rallying to defeat Jerry Gunthorpe, Ovid, Mich., 1 up, in the championship match at the Country Club of Detroit. Elliott, one of the world’s top senior golfers, captured the U.S. Senior Amateur in his 36th USGA event. To read more, click here.
Fast Fact: In the 1953 Walker Cup contested at The Kittansett Club, eight past/present/future USGA champions competed, including future U.S. Open winners Gene Littler (1961) and Ken Venturi (1964) as well as future USGA president William C. Campbell, who would win the 1964 U.S. Amateur and a pair of U.S. Senior Amateur titles. Campbell is the last player to successfully defend his Senior Amateur crown (1979-80).
What Champion Receives: A gold medal, Custody of the Frederick L. Dold Trophy for one year, Exemption from local qualifying for the 2023 U.S. Open Championship, Exemption from qualifying for the 2023 U.S. Senior Open Championship, Exemption from qualifying for the 2023 and 2024 U.S. Amateur Championships, Exemption from qualifying for the 2022 and 2023 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championships, Exemption from qualifying for the next 10 U.S. Senior Amateur Championships.
Future Sites: Martis Camp Club, Truckee, Calif., Aug. 26-31, 2023; The Honors Course, Ooltewah, Tenn., Aug. 24-29, 2024; Biltmore Forest Country Club, Asheville, Tenn., 2025 TBD.
Owned and operated by the town of Brewster, Captains Golf Course is one of the premier public golf course facilities on Cape Cod. According to the club, there were approximately 94,000 rounds played between its two 18-hole courses — the Starboard Course and the Port Course — in 2021.
Brian Silva designed both courses as part of the Geoffrey S. Cornish and Brian Silva golf architecture firm. Cornish reportedly walked the grounds back in 1973, but the course wasn’t approved for construction until a decade later. The first 18 holes at Captains opened in 1985, and in 1999, another 18 holes was opened. The Boston Globe reported that Captains was created for $950,000, less than half of the typical price at the time. However, Silva said was quoted as saying that “Nothing chintzy (cheaply made) went into Captains, and he, “personally spent more than four hours on each hole meticulously seeding the contours into each fairway.”
“They had to move some earth here and there, but the majority of the holes out there are the natural lay of the land,” said Jay Packett, a 22-year club employee, who became the Director of Operations at Captains in January 2021.
As a result of its efforts, Captains was recognized as Golf Digest’s Best New Public Course in the United States. If you’re curious of the original routing of the course, the front nine featured Starboard holes 1, 14, 17, 13, 12, 18, 10, 11 and 9; and the back nine is Port holes 1, 2, 7-11, and 18.
“The best part was when they added the second 18, the two courses mesh together really well, so if you’re not familiar that we expanded, you would just thing these were regular old golf courses,” Packett said.
Captains hosted the Mass Four-Ball Championship back in 2018, with PGA Tour Canada pro Jimmy Hervol taking home the title with then-UConn teammate Tim Umphrey. The club most recently hosted qualifying for the 2021 Massachusetts Amateur Championship.
“We’ve got a lot of support to bring these guys in, get our name out there and show them what we’ve got,” Packett said.
Mass Golf is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that is dedicated to advancing golf in Massachusetts by building an engaged community around the sport.
With a community made up of over 100,000 golf enthusiasts and over 360 member clubs, Mass Golf is one of the largest state golf associations in the country. Members enjoy the benefits of handicapping, engaging golf content, course rating and scoring services along with the opportunity to compete in an array of events for golfers of all ages and abilities