Golf: Concord takes home Division I championship after big days from Gavin Richardson, David Bourgeois and Zach Nelson
|Published: 10-11-2023 8:34 AM
After several years of coming oh-so-close to a Division I team championship, Concord finally finished the job on Tuesday at Canterbury Woods to take home the 2023 team title, the program’s first since 2006.
Senior Gavin Richardson finished in a tie for second after shooting 1-under-par 71. Junior David Bourgeois tied for sixth shooting 4-over-par 76 with freshman Zachary Nelson. All three will represent the Crimson Tide at the state individual championship at Beaver Meadow on Saturday.
“We’ve had some great seasons over the last several years during the regular season, where we’ll finish second in the state championship and fourth and third, but have yet to win it in my tenure as the head coach,” said Mark McDonough, in his seventh year as the coach. “It’s exciting for the kids to win it. We had a great day today. Weather was great. Course was in good condition. Competition was tough – there are some good schools out there. Kids played great. I couldn’t be happier for them. Super proud.”
One of the big challenges during the state tournament is the 18-hole format, as opposed to the typical nine-hole competitions teams play during the regular season.
“It’s a different animal,” McDonough said. “For some of them, that’s a little bit different and unique and has its unique set of challenges from a fatigue standpoint and stamina and mental focus for those 18 holes. It can be a bit of a challenge for some of them. We crossed that hurdle and had a great day today, and as I said, I’m super proud of these kids.”
Richardson, a four-year player for Concord, didn’t play his best, but he found ways to avoid digging himself too deep of a hole. He even hit a shot into the woods, but later recovered.
“All day long, he just kept making one miraculous recovery shot after another and saving par and even making birdies on some of those holes where his tee shot wasn’t exactly where he had hoped it would be,” McDonough said. “Gavin’s a great player. He’s been my number one player since his freshman year.”
Bourgeois and Nelson also played a major role in the team victory.
“That’s probably one of (Bourgeois’) best scores in an 18-hole match in awhile, and I’m super proud of him that he’ll be going,” McDonough said of Bourgeois playing in the individual championship. “(Nelson) carried himself really maturely and professionally for a freshman, and I was super happy to have him on the team and so happy that he performed so well for us on this tournament.”
Saturday’s individual event at Beaver Meadow features the top 16 finishers from each division. And while that event will be a great opportunity for Richardson, Bourgeois and Nelson to build off of their performances on Tuesday, the success of all eight golfers – Carl Sirrianna (7-over 79), Keller Ramshaw (9-over 81), Jordan Dustin (10-over 82), Alex Pelletier (17-over 89) and Bobby Rochford (17-over 89) – in Concord taking home the championship banner.
Sirrianna was part of a nine-way tie for 15th place, just missing the cut for Saturday’s second round in a playoff hole.
Hanover (393) finished second and was led by Adam Goodney, who is tied with Richardson for second. Exeter’s Jascha Johnston leads the pair by one stroke.
Londonderry (397), Bedford (398), Dover (399), Keene (399), Exeter (409) and Nashua North (444) rounded out the team scores, but none could match the Crimson Tide.
“Happy that they were able to get the job done today when in some years’ past we just haven’t been able to close the deal,” McDonough said. “Super proud the kids were able to step up and do it today.”