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Martel Makes History As He Wins Second Straight Stroke Play
Author: Kate Kellar
August 10th 2017 - Rochester, NH –  As if tying the Rochester Country Club course record of 64 in his second round wasn’t enough, Mike Martel of Nashua Country Club followed it up in his third round by besting the course record with a stunning 63.  Martel’s display of golf in the past three days at the Stroke Play Championship sponsored by Willem Verweij & Associates Physical Therapy was nothing short of amazing.  He won the Championship by ten strokes and broke numerous records in the process.
 
To start, Martel opened the final day with a one-shot lead over Damon Salo (Bretwood Golf Club) with 36 holes to play.  While Salo shot a respectable even par in the third round, Martel went to work going two under on his opening nine and then going birdie-eagle-birdie to begin his back nine for the round.  The rest is history; he added three more birdies to get to nine under par and break the Rochester CC course record which he has previously tied with a 64 in the second round.
 
Entering the fourth and final round Martel had a ten-shot lead over the rest of the field.  The next closest competitor was Damon Salo, his playing competitor for the day.  In the fourth round, the two exchanged birdies back and forth throughout all 18 holes and each finished the round with a pair of 67’s, five under par.  Salo even finished the tournament at ten-under, which in past years would position him in first place. 
 
Still soaking it all in, Martel reflected back on the tournament saying, “I never really got ahead of myself those last 54 holes.  I stayed one shot at a time and I just kept hitting good shots and I made a few putts.  I just didn’t make any mistakes which helps big time on the golf course”.
 
Now a two-time Stroke Play champion, Martel went bogey free for 55 holes, not making a bogey since his 17th hole in the first round of the tournament.  With a record breaking performance, his Stroke Play Championship records now stand at the lowest single round score (63), the lowest one-day 36-hole total (130), the lowest 72-hole total (268), and the lowest under par to finish (-20).
 
Finishing at ten-under par and ten shots back of the winner may seem heartbreaking, but Damon Salo still held his head high as his golf was nothing to be overlooked.  After today’s 36 holes he spoke about his game saying, “I haven’t been playing too much lately, but it feels good to have my game still be pretty sharp.  I’m still reading the greens pretty well and speed’s dialed in.
 
“I kept it simple, one shot at a time.  I gave myself opportunities and I came out in second so I’m pretty happy about the week,” Salo continued.
 
Jim Cilley fell into third place as he shot a total of 287 (one under par) for the tournament, one of the three under-par golfers for the week.  Being surrounded by a group of golfers in their early 20’s, Cilley was the first mid-amateur player on the leaderboard and continues to show his consistency in New Hampshire golf.  Matt Paradis also had a strong showing with an even par total and finishing in fourth place overall.
 
Rochester Country Club was in excellent condition all week and offered a good test to the field top New Hampshire golfers.  With many undulating greens, being able to keep the ball below the hole was important to scoring well throughout the week.
 
Congratulations again to Mike Martel on an impressive performance this week!
 
Complete Results can be found here: https://www.golfgenius.com/pages/1100471
 
 

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