FALMOUTH, Maine — The 95th Maine Amateur Championship will return to The Woodlands Club for the second time, when the three-round golf tournament begins Tuesday, the Maine State Golf Association announced in a recent news release.
The tourney was last held there 15 years ago when Ron Brown won his second Maine Amateur title, defeating the 13-time champ Mark Plummer, who finished second.
Brown secured the victory by going three days without losing a ball or taking a penalty on the challenging championship layout at Woodlands. He and Plummer will join defending champion and three-time winner Ricky Jones, along with 1998 winner Eric Crouse, as the returning champions in the field of 132 players.
Every other Maine Amateur Championship winner in the last 21 years — with the exception of Seth Sweet, who won at Sunday River in 2012 — is a golf professional. These players include three-time winner Ryan Gay and Shawn Warren, the reigning New England PGA Player of the Year. Sweet moved south with his family and is finishing up his collegiate career at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, Virginia.
The Amateur is a 54-hole stroke play completion. In all, there were 55 exempt players and 77 who earned their spots at qualifiers held at Penobscot Valley Country Club in Orono, Martindale CC in Auburn and Biddeford-Saco CC in Saco.
The field for the championship will be cut to the lowest 40 two-day scores, plus ties, for Thursday’s final round. Any player who makes the cut will be exempt from qualifying for next year’s championship, which will be held at Waterville Country Club in Oakland.
TOURNEY NOTEBOOK: The field comprises 132 players representing 50 different golf clubs across Maine. … Sable Oaks GC has the most players in the field with 10, followed by Falmouth CC with nine, and Augusta CC, Martindale CC and host Woodlands Club with eight. … Twelve of Maine’s 16 counties have at least one player in the field. … There is one father-son combination in the field with Jim and Reese McFarlane from Purpoodock Club in Cape Elizabeth. … Joe and Mike Walp from Falmouth CC are the only brothers in the field. … The oldest player in the field is 68-year-old Lowell Watson, and the youngest is 15-year-old Carter Pearl.