The Augusta Country Club team of Mark Plummer, Jim Quinn, Tom Bean and Jason Gall won its fourth Team Club Championship on Sunday at Belgrade Lakes.

The foursome shot 11-under par 131 to beat the runner-up team from Dunegrass by three strokes. Under the format, the two best scores out of four on each hole count toward the final total. Augusta has won five titles in all. Last year, the team of Plummer, Quinn, Bean and Maine Amateur champ Ryan Gay tied for first place.

The Plummer, Quinn, Bean, Gall combination also won in 2004, 2006 and 2008.

“Having Mark Plummer on (the team) doesn’t hurt,” Gall said of the 13-time Maine Amateur champion. “Beyond that we’re all real consistent. We don’t make a lot of bogeys.”

There was a full field of 40 teams for the event.

“The tournament’s a lot more popular than it used to be and there are a lot of younger teams,” Gall said. “Belgrade was fabulous. The golf course is in perfect shape. It’s just really nice to be up there.”

Gall is the youngest member of the Augusta CC team at 38. Bean is 50, Plummer 60 and Quinn, a former Maine Seniors champ, is 64.

The Waterville Country team of Don Proulx, Bob Roy, Jim Lucas and Garry Willett won the senior division with a score of 144.

• • •

Like many nine-hole golf courses in the state, Sheepscot Links in Whitefield has developed gradually.

Carved out of farmland in the late 1990s, it began with three holes. It expanded to nine holes 12 years ago and has since gained a niche, drawing from coastal communities as well as the Augusta-Gardiner area.

“We’ve got a real mix,” co-owner George Hall said of his customers. “I would say there are more older people.”

Hall and co-owner Ed Karass have made improvements each year. They expanded the clubhouse about five years ago and now sell alcoholic beverages. This season they’ve trimmed back fairways, done some landscaping and are expanded four tee boxes to include some forward tees.

“We’re gaining a little every year,” Hall said.

The course is short at just under 2,900 yards and features a couple of holes that require driving over hazards that offer risk-reward options. There are two par 3s and one par 5 and a few of the greens can be tricky depending on pin placements.

There are about 100 members and something going on nearly every day from Monday morning scrambles to the Tuesday night league to the Thursday night co-ed scramble. Friday nights are for families and the first three holes are open for beginners and can be played four times for $5. Saturday morning features a pins and skins tournament while benefit tournaments are often held Saturday afternoons.

Prices have remained low at Sheepscot Links. It’s $15 for nine holes and $24 for 18. The current spring special includes a cart and is $20 for nine and $28 for 18.

“Our fees are staying the same,” Hall said.

Sheepscot Links also has a co-operative agreement with several area courses including Western View, The Meadows, Cedar Spring, Wawenok and Cobbossee Colony where members can play those courses for $10. This is helpful early and late in the season since the course stays open as long as possible.

• • •

Waterville native Toby Spector continues to develop his professional golf career, playing events in North Carolina on both the eGolf Professional Tour and Carolina Pro Tour. The eGolf Tour is a step below the Nationwide Tour and includes better purses than the North Carolina Tour.

“This year’s been a pretty slow start,” said Spector who has played in five events. “I’m struggling a little bit in scoring.”

Spector, who works and plays out of Statesville Country Club, an hour north of Charlotte, N.C., made a number of cuts last year and finished 11th in the tour championship.

“It comes down to the little things,” he said. “Work ethic, the mental game, your putting, how to handle adversity.”

Spector, 25, won the Maine schoolboy title his senior year at Waterville Senior High School and went on to play for Skidmore College in Saratoga, N.Y., where he won seven tournaments. He turned pro at age 22.

He’ll return to Maine next month to play in the Charlie’s Maine Open at the Augusta Country Club.

“I’m excited,” he said. “I haven’t been back to Maine in a while.”

Spector said he’s played Augusta about 30 times.

“It’s a short course, don’t hit it in the woods,” he said. “Just try to make a lot of birdies.”

• • •

Madison’s Seth Sweet, Winthrop’s Tyler Foster and Nokomis’ Ethan Pearl are among the 13 new recipients of Maine State Golf Association scholarships. They will receive $1,500 each for the 2012-2013 academic year and the scholarships are renewable each year up to four.

Sweet won his second Class C schoolboy title last fall and will attend Division I Old Dominion University next fall. The rest of the recipients include Tyler Warren of Turner, Brandan Albee of Ellsworth, Craig Decato of York, Erik Lee of Hampden, Daniel Muther of Unity, Malcolm Oliver of Damariscotta, Matthew Packard of Falmouth, Anthony Viola of Brunswick, Evan Waddell of Presque Isle and Brooke Wood of Machiasport.

Gary Hawkins — 621-5638

[email protected]

 


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