Match Play Now Underway with a Number of Upsets Across the Board

Concord, NH – Extra holes, upsets, and golfers advancing on to the next round define the day at Beaver Meadow Golf Course where the Match Play Championships continued with the opening round of matches for the Mid-Amateur and Senior Divisions.  All divisions saw some top seeds and golfers get upset, whereas those managing the golf course properly were able to survive and advance to the next round of match play.
Among the golfers moving on from the Mid-Amateur championship bracket are 2022 Mid-Amateur Match Play finalists Keith Stone and Mark Stevens.  Both are looking to make another deep run in this tournament with Stevens attempting to defend his title.  Jalen Rines is another competitor moving forward who went up against 2022 New Hampshire Amateur Runner-up, Jim Cilley. 
Rines went into the match against Cilley with the lower seed based on their qualifying scores from Pease a few weeks back.  Despite their seeding, he knew Cilley was going to be a tough competitor due to his history in NHGA championships, including a runner-up finish in last year’s State Amateur Championship which truly tests your match play abilities.
“It definitely got the nerves flowing for sure”, stated Rines following the match. 
Rines and Cilley made the turn with Rines 2up over Cilley and went on to win the 10th hole to get to 3up, but at no point felt completely comfortable with that.  He said, “We both struggled in the beginning but halfway through I knew Jim was going to make a comeback and I needed to get up and down.  I kind of let him back in a little bit.”
By the 17th hole, the match was back to being tied and both made bogey on the 17th.  With a birdie needed by one of them to close it out on the 18th, they both missed their attempts and settled for extra holes.  They headed to Beaver Meadow’s 10th hole which is a par-5 where some of the top players can reach it in two shots.  Cilley went for the green in two, ending over the green.  After seeing that, Rines made a quick decision to also make an attempt at the green in two but missed to the left.
Both players were left with the need to make the up and down to win the match.  Unfortunately for Cilley, his wedge shot rolled out a little further than he would have liked and his missed his birdie putt.  Rines put his chip shot to about three feet and drained the putt for the win to advance.
Looking ahead, Rines says his game plan is to just keep playing how he has been.  He commented, “I’m going to have to make a lot of putts and work on my putter.  Overall, my swing is fine and I should be good to go.”
Rines moves on to face Eric Emeneau, the 15 seed in the bracket, who upset the 2 seed Matt Moore to find himself in the Quarterfinals.
In the Senior division of the championship, the top four seeds are all advancing which includes Danny Arvanitis, Bill Everett, Craig Steckowych and Bob Mielcarz.  The Senior division also faced some upsets where Bill Krueger, the 10 seed of the bracket, took John Mumford, the 7 seed, to 20 holes to decide their match.  It was a close one the entire time as they made the turn and came up 18 with the match tied.  With two extra holes needed, Krueger managed to take the win.
Another upset was with the Mike Blair and David Kane match, both worthy of moving on but Kane held the 12 seed and Blair the 5 seed in the bracket.  At the turn, Kane held control of the match at 3up but let Blair hang around a little on the back nine at Beaver Meadow.  He ultimately closed it out on the 15th hole, winning 4&3 to move on.  Kane does not have an easy road ahead, he moves on to face Bob Mielcarz who has nine State Amateur titles under his belt, so match play is a format he knows best.
The Match Play Championships are set to continue on July 25 at Sky Meadow Country Club.
Senior Match Play | Championship Bracket
Senior Flight 1 | Bracket
Mid-Amateur Match Play | Bracket
Mid-Amateur Flight 1 | Bracket
Mid-Amateur Flight 2 | Bracket
Mid-Amateur Flight 3 | Bracket
Mid-Amateur Flight 4 | Bracket

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