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Leavitt Wins Another - Takes Stroke Play Title
Author: Wayne Mills
August 7th 2014 -

HUDSON, NEW HAMPSHIRE-That old philosopher Yogi Berra once said "Ninety percent of golf is half mental." Once Joe Leavitt learned that lesson he has been virtually unstoppable in New Hampshire Golf Association (NHGA) events.

Leavitt capped off his unprecedented season with a win at the 2014 New Hampshire Stroke Play Championship on Thursday at Green Meadow Golf Club by shooting a one under par 71 in the morning round and finishing in style with a four under 68 (low round of the day) in the afternoon to nip Connor Greenleaf by two shots and finish at eight under par for the 72 hole event.

Never has an amateur golfer won the Tournament of Champions, the Player's Invitational, the New Hampshire Amateur and the Stroke Play Championship in the same season. Leavitt has done that and now, for the first time ever, completed the Granite Slam.

Leavitt has always displayed the ability but his attitude often held him back. "It's been in my head really. When I was younger I was real mental about the game and let bad shots bother me"he said in explaining his breakthrough year. "This year especially I have learned to shake off bad shots- if you make a bogey so what? I am just trying to keep my mind right," he said. "If you hit a bad shot there's nothing you can do about it. You just have to stay focused and go hit the next shot. I am a much more patient player than I used to be."

Leavitt described his winning formula, "Pretty much spot on with my irons and wedges. I've been hitting it close from inside 150 yards and been able to make the 5-8 footers that you need to make."

In the understatement of the year Leavitt said, "I am hitting the golf ball as good as you can hit it right now."

Boston College freshman-to-be Greenleaf gave it a gallant effort by shooting even par 72 in the morning and finishing with a two under 70 in the afternoon round that featured a chip in eagle at 13 and a chip in birdie on 18 but it wasn't enough to overcome the relentless Leavitt.

Greenleaf has his chances but couldn't make a few crucial putts, "I hit them the way I wanted to but they just did not drop," he said post round.

Ryan Kohler shot a 75 in the morning but roared back with a 3 under-69 in the afternoon to finish third at 3 under and Jake Nutter went 72-74 to post a one under final score, the only other play in red numbers for the week.

Full stroke play results can be found here


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