ARUNDEL — Right after Eli Spaulding teed off to begin his final round of the Maine Junior Championship, he was issued a friendly challenge by Brian Bickford, the executive director of the Maine State Golf Association. In Tuesday’s first round, Spaulding shot 5-under 67. That, Bickford said, was one shot off the Dutch Elm Golf Club course record.

“For real?” Spaulding, a rising junior at Freeport High School, said.

In Wednesday’s round, Spaulding didn’t threaten the course record, shooting 1-over 73, but no other players threatened Spaulding either. With a two-day score of 4-under 140, Spaulding cruised to the boys’ title in the 16-18-year old flight, 11 strokes ahead of second-place Parker Hilchey and 12 ahead of Finn Sharpe, Spaulding’s former Freeport teammate.

It was the second consecutive junior title for Spaulding, who won last year playing in the 14-15-year old flight. The only player in the field of 52 to score under par, Spaulding said the thought of coming so close to the Dutch Elm course record the previous day didn’t factor into how he played his second round.

“I was just going out there and trying to play them the same way as (Tuesday). It definitely didn’t go the same,” Spaulding said. “I’m certainly pretty happy with how I played. There’s always some solid competition here.”

Ruby Haylock, who graduated last spring from Leavitt High, won her second straight girls’ title and third overall. Haylock shot back-to-back rounds of 77 to finish 14 shots ahead of Ruth Weeks, a rising senior at Greely High. It was the second championship in as many weeks for Haylock, who won her second Maine Women’s Amateur crown last week at Portland Country Club.


“Today felt better than yesterday for some reason, but I wasn’t thrilled with my score either day,” said Haylock, who will continue her golf career this fall at Bates College.

An eagle on the par-5 third hole was the highlight of Haylock’s round Wednesday. Both days, Haylock tried to cut the corner on the par-4 eighth hole, a sharp dogleg right. Each day she took a bogey on the hole, but unlike Tuesday, Haylock stayed out of the woods in the second round.

“Yesterday it didn’t work out for me. Today, it worked out,” Haylock said.

Haylock’s lone birdie in the second round came on the par-5 15th hole.

After opening Wednesday’s round with three consecutive pars, Spaulding struggled with a bogey on four, a double bogey on five after he needed to use his provisional ball when his approach shot was lost in the woods to the left of the fairway, and another bogey on six. Sitting at 4 over for the round, Spaulding recovered with three consecutive birdies to hit the turn at 1 over.

“I knew that even though I hadn’t gotten off to a great start, there was some time to get back. Even though I was making a couple bad swings, it wasn’t the end of the world. Seven, eight, nine, all were birdies, and that kind of got me going and back in it,” Spaulding said.


The highlight of Spaulding’s round was his near hole-in-one on the par-3, 196 yard 17. Using a 5-iron, Spaulding placed his tee shot a foot from the hole.

“Seventeen was definitely the star of the show. We think it hit the flag stick dead on and bounced right back. I put on a good swing there,” Spaulding said.

Jade Haylock, Ruby’s younger sister, won the girls’ 14-15-year-old flight, shooting 21-over 167 to finish three shots ahead of Alexis McCormick, her teammate at Leavitt. Haylock had four birdies in her Wednesday round. Ryan Farnsworth won the boys’ 12-13 flight at 35-over 179, the highlight Wednesday a birdie on hole No. 2.

Mick Madden won the boys’ 14-15 flight at 6-over 150. After shooting an even-par 72 Tuesday, Madden struggled on the front nine Wednesday, with six bogeys. He finished his round well, with a birdie on No. 17.

Drew Mertzel and Sam Sirois tied for the title in the nine-hole flight at plus-14 86. Mertzel and Sirois were also tied at the end of round one.

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