Thursday, May 12, 2016

Jack Stigberg memorial golf tourney still going strong

The Jack Stigberg Memorial Golf Tournament is still going strong, 35 years after it started.
The tournament is played in the memory of Stigberg, a Wolcott High School golfer who was killed in a motorcycle accident.
Twenty-one teams of two players each gathered at a sun-splashed and surprisingly tranquil Farmingbury Hills Golf Course on Wednesday to play 18 holes, best-ball format.
New Milford's tandem of Kyle Poeti and John Pace shot a four-over-par 74 to take first place. New Milford was followed by a trio of 76s turned in by Woodland, Watertown and Cheshire. The tiebreakers were broken by taking the first score of each team on the first hole that they played. Woodland claimed second place because of a 3. Watertown had a 4, but so did Cheshire, but the second hole played (4-7) gave the Indians third place over the Rams.

Wolcott's No. 1 team of Preston Lavoie (in the photo at left) and Kyle Fishbein were the first locals to jump into the fray. The pair combined for a 79 and a fifth place finish. The Eagles sent out three different teams on their home course.

Here's how the local teams fared:

Wolcott 1 -- Preston Lavoie and Kyle Fishbein: 79 (40 out, 39 in)

St. Paul -- Paul Wiecki and Dan Stump: 81 (38-43)

Holy Cross -- Alex Matos and Kevin Alves: 83 (43-40)

Sacred Heart -- Fran Fahy and Anthony Corbo: 83 (44-39) 

Wolcott 2 -- Mason Cipriano and Logan Durant: 84 (39-45)

Wolcott 3 -- Jack Gould and Matt Romeo: 87 (46-41)

Kaynor Tech -- Ryan Pelletier and Tim McAllen: 91 (44-47)

Crosby -- Eileen Escobar and Michelle Escobar: DNF

Wolcott head coach and Farmingbury PGA professional Craig Kealey was kind enough to sit down and give me some pointers about this tournament. It was my first time attending.
"Jack Stigberg was a member of the Wolcott High School golf team, and he was killed in a motorcycle accident," Kealey said.
Kealey said players look forward to the tournament, which is a nice regional contest. The best-ball format allows for some strategy, and for teammates to pick each other up. Each player plays the hole, and the best score is the one that counts.
With Farmingbury being only a nine-hole course, it limits the amount of teams that can play.

Besides honoring Stigberg and keeping his memory alive, money from the tournament is given as scholarships to Wolcott seniors each year.

Wolcott has been hitting the ball pretty well, according to Kealey. The Eagles still have a chance to make the Division III state tournament. That tournament will be played on June 3 at Fairview Farm in Harwinton.

Crosby brought two female golfers, senior Eileen Escobar and freshman Michelle Escobar, to the event. Bulldogs head coach Shea Moriarty wanted to reward the girls for their hard work.
Girls golf is certainly growing. St. Paul has a team of its own, and that's not as uncommon in the state as it used to be. Girls routinely help fill out boys rosters, and some are even part of their own girls team.
The NVL is slated to have its first girls golf tournament next Tuesday at Hop Brook in Naugatuck at 2 p.m.


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