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Steckowych & Pelletier Crowned 2020 Match Play Champions

September 23rd, 2020

Hudson, NH – Craig Steckowych (Porstmouth CC) and Pat Pelletier (Carter CC) each took home the trophy in their respective divisions of the Senior & Mid-Amateur Match Play Championship at Green Meadow Golf Club.  On the final day of matches, Steckowych defeated both Bob Kearney and Bill Everett to take the title, while Pelletier beat Jeff Monahan and Matt Burroughs to capture the win.
Steckowych’s morning started out great as he got a quick lead up on Bob Kearney (Bretwood GC) being 4up thru 5 holes and then got to 7up thru 9 holes.  At that point, Kearney needed to win the majority of the holes on the back nine to stay in the match with Steckowych, but Steckowych ended up closing out the match on the 13th hole, winning 6&5. 
He went on to face Bill Everett (Laconia CC), a strong competitor in any event he enters.  Everett’s Semifinal match against Mike Blair (Bretwood GC) was a close as one, as he even trailed Blair by one hole after playing the front nine.  But Everett made a charge on the back nine, getting into position to win the match on the 17th hole, 2&1.
Steckowych and Everett had an even closer match, as one golfer’s lead never stretched to more than 1up.  They traded holes a few times on their first nine in the match but were back at tied after 9 holes.  Steckowych won their 11th hole with a birdie and that’s where the match stayed as they halved the remainder of the holes for Steckowych to win his third-straight Senior Match Play title.
“I drove the ball very well and I putted okay,” stated Steckowych after his win.  “I didn’t have many three putts at all today and if you know me, that’s a good thing.”
It’s clear that Steckowych felt comfortable with his game and what he set out to accomplish.  He said, “My game plan was to make a whole bunch of pars and throw in some birdies here and there and it worked out well.”
With this being his third consecutive win in this championship, it seems that match play works for him.  But he said, “I like them both (stroke play and match play), I think there are different strategies to each of them but ultimately you have to play pretty good.  I was fortunate enough to play pretty well.”
In the Mid-Amateur bracket, Pat Pelletier bested Green Meadow Golf Club member, Jeff Monahan 5&3 to earn his spot in the final match.  He then waited on the results of the Harvin Groft (The Oaks GL) and Matt Burroughs (Derryfield CC) match, which needed all 18 holes to determine the winner.  Burroughs ultimately defeated Groft 1up to move on to the final match against Pelletier.
In the final match, Pelletier made a couple quick birdies on their first nine holes to get a lead going.  He said, “I made a couple of birdies early.  I hit the ball really well off the tee, so I was in good position.”
“Against Matt (Burroughs), I never really chipped,” continued Pelletier.  “I think I was on the fringe or the green on every hole, so I gave myself a lot of looks so it really puts a lot of pressure on your opponent when you do that.”
He certainly put the pressure on early and Burroughs made a few mistakes to fall behind, down 4 holes to Pelletier after playing 8 holes in the match.  But Burroughs won the 9th hole for Pelletier to be 3up at the turn.  From there, they halved holes until the 15th hole of the match where Pelletier made par after Burroughs missed the green long and couldn’t get up and down for par.
This marks Pelletier’s second NHGA championship win this season, as he took home the title in the Stroke Play Championship held at Montcalm Golf Club in August.  This is also the second-straight championship win for Pelletier when the tournament has been held at Green Meadow Golf Club.  In 2019, he won the Stroke Play Championship when it was held there.
Talking about the course, Pelletier commented, “I like the way it fits.  I hit a lot of fades off the tee and there’s a lot of holes, especially the par 5’s, that have a dogleg right slightly, so it fits my eye.”
Pelletier looks to carry this winning momentum with him as he will head to Lake Winnipesaukee Golf Club next month to compete in the New Hampshire Mid-Amateur Championship against some of the top competitors in the state.
In the First Flight of the Senior Match Play, Peter Stopera defeated David Dunbar 3&1 to take the title in their flight.  Earlier in the week, Stopera defeated the top seed of the flight to move on and ultimately take the win.
The NHGA would like to thank the entire staff at Green Meadow Golf Club for their hospitality throughout the week.  The course was in great condition, providing a tough but fair test for golfers all week.
Match Play Brackets: CLICK HERE