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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Cody Paladino leads by one heading into Connecticut Open's final round


FAIRFIELD >> Cody Paladino spent plenty of time in the winner’s circle two years ago, earning the Connecticut State Golf Association’s Player of the Year as an amateur.

But since turning pro, the 26 year old is still in search of his first professional victory. That could come today.
Paladino birdied three of his final five holes to shoot a 2-under 69 and take a one-stroke lead into today’s final round of the 81st Connecticut Open at The Patterson Club.

“I play to win golf tournaments,” said Paladino, who stands at 6-under-par 136. “In 2013, obviously I won a lot of tournaments. What ended up happening was I felt like this is what I should do. Then (you find out) so many people out there are just as good as you or better than you.”

Nick Harrington and Pete Ballo are tied for second at 5-under while four-time Open champion Kyle Gallo stands alone in fourth place, two shots behind Paladino. Steve Sokol, Brian Gaffney, Adam Rainaud and Clark Robinson are tied for fifth (3-under 139).

“I thought if I got to 5- or 6-under, I’d be within a few (of the lead) going into tomorrow,” said Harrington, who will play with Paladino in the final pairing. “I think at 5 (under) I’m in a pretty good spot.”

The cut came at 3-over 145. Among the notables missing today’s final round are: Hamden resident Ryan Leahey (147), 2005 and 2006 Open winner Nick Cook (147), Connecticut Amateur champ Evan Grenus (148), reigning Palmer Cup champion Ben Day from New Haven CC (149), Connecticut Junior Amateur champion Andrew Sciarretta (152) and Evan Beirne from New Haven CC (152).

Monday’s first round co-leaders, John Flaherty and Corey Birch, combined to shoot 23 strokes worse in Tuesday’s second round. Flaherty (76) and Birch (77) trail Paladino by five and six strokes, respectively.

81ST CONNECTICUT OPEN
(At the Patterson Club, Fairfield)
SECOND ROUND
Cody Paladino (Wethersfield CC), 67-69-136; Pete Ballo (Woodway CC), 70-67-137; Nick Harrington (Windham Club), 70-67-137; Kyle Gallo (Tallwood CC), 71-67-138; Steve Sokol (Orange Hills CC), 68-71-139; Clark Robinson (Ellington Ridge CC), 66-73-139; Brian Gaffney (Quaker Ridge CC), 68-71-139; Adam Rainaud (Black Hall Club), 67-72-139; Oren Shake (Smith Richardson GC), 71-69-140; Bobby Gage (Candlewood Valley CC), 69-71-140; Anthony Casalino (Innis Arden GC), 69-72-141; John Flaherty (TPC River Highlands) 65-76-141; John Bushka (Aspetuck Valley CC), 71-70-141; Corey Birch (Silver Spring CC), 65-77-142; Frank Bensel (Century CC), 73-69-142; William Street (New Haven CC), 72-70-142; Kyle Buschmann (unattached), 72-70-142; Brian Lamberti (Richter Park GC), 72-70-142; Dan Balin (Burning Tree CC), 74-69-143; Kevin Giancola (Golf Quest), 73-70-143; Paul Pastore (unattached), 73-70-143; ; Monte Mullen (TPC River Highlands), 71-72-143; Blake Morris (CC of Waterbury), 71-72-143; Geoff Vartelas (Lyman Orchards GC), 71-72-143; Pat Hallisey (TPC River Highlands), 70-73-143.

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