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Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Rainaud wins Spring Stroke Play, Travelers Championship exemption

Adam Rainaud said he was never nervous during the final round of Wednesday’s Spring PGA Stroke Play Tournament - until standing over his final putt.

Rainaud was unsure exactly where he stood. He knew he was leading the golf tournament at The Farms Country Club, but thought his closest pursuers were his playing partners. He finally found out approaching the 18th green that Kevin Mahaffy was closer: just one shot behind.

So Rainaud, realizing he needed to two-putt from approximately 40 feet, left his approach 5 feet short. But he knocked in the par putt to win the tournament - and a berth in next month’s Travelers Championship.

“I love being a PGA pro, it’s an honor,” said Rainaud, 28, in his fourth year as an assistant pro at the Black Hall Club in Old Lyme. “I want to prove to guys from the PGA Tour that PGA professionals who work 60 hours a week can also play pretty well.”

Rainaud, a South Hadley, Massachusetts native, shot an even-par 72 to finish as the only player under par with a two-round total of 1-under 143. Mahaffy, the head pro at Pequabuck GC in Bristol, shot two even-par rounds to finish at 144.

Mike Martin, a New Haven resident and the first-round leader, shot a 4-over 76 and finished third. He has earned three previous exemptions to the TPC River Highlands in Cromwell to play in the Travelers.

After bogeying the 11th hole, Rainaud birdied 12 and 14 to take the lead for good. He parred the last four holes.

Spring Stroke Play
(at The Farms CC)
Adam Rainaud (Black Hall Club), 71-72-143; Kevin Mahaffy (Pequabuck GC), 72-72-144; Mike Martin (Tashua Knolls GC), 70-76-146; Brent Paladino (CSGA), 73-74-147; Fran Marrello (PGA Life member), 72-75-147; Adam D’Amario (Indian Hill CC), 71-76-147; Ian Marshall (Watertown GC), 76-73-149; Bob Kay (Tumble Brook CC), 149; Williams Street (New Haven CC), 72-77-149
Other area finishers
Paul Barnsley (Race Brook CC), 77-75-152; Jim Hanlon (The Farms CC), 79-79-158; Jeff Beale (The Farms CC), 85-82-167; Jim Ferguson (Wallingford CC), 84-85-169; Sean Busca (Clinton CC), 86-89-175.

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