LACONIA — Laconia County Club won praise from golfers from all over New England who took part in the 17th annual New England Senior Amateur Championship which concluded yesterday after two days of play.
''It's a hidden gem, an absolutely fantastic golf course. The condition of the course was absolutely superb,'' said Dick King of Hyannisport. Mass., winner of the Super Senior award for lowest score (152) for a golfer over 65.
His praise was echoed by Harry B. McCracken Jr., the executive secretary and treasurer of the New England Golf Association, who was the head official for the tournament., and Dick Osborn of the Bay State, president of the association.
''The greens are fantastic and they all play so consistent,'' said Osborn, who presented LCC President Randy Annis with a citation honoring the club for hosting the tournament while singling out LCC's green superintendent Tom DiFonzo and LCC pro Todd Rollins for special praise.
Annis said that LCC was proud to host the championship, which featured over 100 of New England's top age 55 and over amateur golfers.
The tournament was won by Jim Romanello of Shorehaven Golf Cub in Connecticut, who posted a 145 score to edge Bruce Carter of The International in Massachusetts by one stroke. Finishing third with a 147 was Brian Secia of Miaconnet Golf Course in Connecticut.
Top New Hampshire finishers were Phil Pleat of Nashua CC with a 148 and Craig Steckowych of Portsmouth CC and Robert Linn of Franconia CC, both with a 149.
Bill Everett, former Laconia Country Club golfer who now plays at Owl's Head CC and lives in Raleigh, North Carolina, was in contention after the first day with a 73, which trailed first day leader Paul Mitchell of George Wright GC in Massachusetts by three strokes, but shot a 77 Wednesday, finishing at 150.
''The course was great. I just wish I'd played a little better,'' said Everett.
One of the officials, Tom Lane of Connecticut, said that he attended Boston College with Jack Irwin, whose family at that time owned the Winnipesaukee Gardens and Irwin Marine, and didn't realize for years that Irwin's was such an important part of the Lake Winnipesaukee and New England boating world.
Richard Osborn (left), president of the New England Golf Association, presents a citation honoring Laconia Country Club for hosting the 17th annual New England Senior Amateur Championship to Randy Annis, president of Laconia Country Club. (Roger Amsden/for The Laconia Daily Sun)
Richard Osborn, president of the New England Golf Association, presents a trophy to Jim Romanello of Shorehaven Golf Club in Connecticut, winner of the 17th annual New England Senior Amateur Championship which was held at Laconia Country Club the last two days. (Roger Amsden photo for the Laconia Daily Sun)
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