Sports

Four Teams Tie for First at Masters Memorial

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GREENSBORO – The Hardwick Academy/Hazen Union Alumni Association’s 2024 Alumni Reunion began on Friday afternoon as the association held its Masters Memorial golf tournament at Mountain View Country Club in Greensboro. The weather included clouds and sun with warm conditions.

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The foursome of (from left) Monty Shatney, Bob Blake, Ben Forant and Will Shatney, not only shocked themselves, but everyone else, by capturing the 2024 Masters Memorial title with a round of 6-under par 29, defeating three other teams tied with them. Their birdie on Hole 6 gave them the win on a card count over the other three foursomes.

The tournament drew 23 foursomes and 93 players as 10 foursomes went out at 1 p.m. and the other 13 foursomes played in a 3:30 p.m. group.

The finish was close as four teams tied for first place with rounds of six-under par 29. Two foursomes who went out at one tied for the lead with another two in the 3:30 group.

With no playoff options, the winner had to be determined by a card count. Starting with the hardest hole, number 4, all the teams tied with a birdie. But the biggest upset in Masters Memorial history happened when the card count went to the sixth hole, the second toughest hole.

The foursome of Bob Blake, Monty Shatney, Will Shatney and Ben Forant shocked everyone and captured the championship by producing the only birdie on six. This was a team of high-handicap golfers who, on this particular day, somehow produced championship caliber golf and left with the coveted green jackets.

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Family and friends of Jack Strong gather with him as he is honored at the alumni reunion on Saturday. He taught for 50 years at Hazen Union, was the baseball coach for 19 years and coached girls soccer for 26 years. In front are (from left) Judy Strong Peterson, a sister, Jack Strong and his wife Colleen Strong; in two back rows are Dorothy Hill, Letitia Hill, Xavier Hill, Travis Hill, Jeff Strong, Nicole Strong, Aaron Hill, Jay Strong and Billy Waller.

Their round included an eagle-two on the second hole when Forant drove the green and Monty Shatney buried the 20 foot putt. They could be heard throughout the course laughing at their good fortune, relishing their unlikely superior play.

They started on the third hole with a bogey, then caught fire with a birdie on fourth. After parring the fifth they produced four consecutive birdies on 6, 7, 8 and 9.

They finished with the eagle on two and were dancing all the way to the scorer’s table.

The foursome of Peter Kipp, Patrick Kipp, Art Ewen and Pete Brochu also fired a 29 in the first group. In the afternoon group, the foursome of Arron Molleur, Kip Doyon, course superintendent Steve Parker and George Gattone shot 29. The final group tied for the lead included Nate Brown, Brian Niemi, Doug Dupree and Dan Judkins.

Defending champions Dale Rowell, John Sperry, Mike Clark and Rick Wheeler tied for second at four under par 31 with former champions Dan and Sue Hudson, Darwin Thompson and Bob Fair.

A third team at 4-under, tied for second, was Rick Renaud, Cindy Wemette, Dave Wemette and Kevin Hussey. They placed second last year also.

Closest to the hole winners were Mike Bingham on three and Dave Bellavance on five in the early group. In the latter set, Steve Parker won on three and Bunker Hodgdon on five.

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