VASSALBORO – Falmouth won its second Class A golf state championship in three seasons Saturday, showing good balance in the tournament at Natanis Golf Course.

The Yachtsmen had three players shoot in the 70s.

Camden Hills won in Class B — its first state title in 11 years — and St. Dominic of Auburn continued its dominance in Class C with its third title and fifth in seven years.

Counting the best four scores out of five, Falmouth finished at 316, seven shots better than Bangor. Gorham, the defending champion, was third at 324.

Craig Smith led the Yachtsmen with a 77, Joe Lesniak and Brad Gilbert had 78s, and the fourth scorer was Matt Hutcheon with an 83. Russell Barnard, who wasn’t well, was Falmouth’s fifth player with an 89.

A senior-ladened team, Falmouth began the year with the state title on its mind.

“We had high hopes going in. We didn’t play great but we came out with a win. That’s all that matters,” said Lesniak, who was in the lineup as a freshman and sophomore when Falmouth won in Class B in 2010, then in Class A the next year.

“Our top guys struggled a bit, but our fifth guy (Craig Smith) really played well. He was our low scorer,” Lesniak said.

Lesniak was par on the front nine, gave a few strokes back at the start of the second nine but finished strongly. He hit a long iron shot over water to the 18th and two-putted for par.

Falmouth was a strong program in Class B and has carried that over into the larger class.

“All the players are dedicated,” said Lesniak. “We show up for practice, work hard outside of practice and I’m glad it all paid off.”

Camden Hills, led by Daulton Wickenden with a 72, finished at 321. Cape Elizabeth and Maine Central Institute tied at 334 but Cape got second on the fifth player tiebreaker

The other Windjammers scorers were Julian Starbird (80), Drew Long (81) and Drew Holt (88).

“These guys spent a whole season being consistent in their play,” said Camden Hills Coach Mark Wallace. “It wasn’t their best game today but they’ve worked hard on taking the game they show up with and doing the best they can with it.”

On Tuesday, Camden Hills qualified for the states at Natanis and shot 313.

“The players did a nice job. We’re going to try to do it again next year,” said Wallace.

The best foursome of the day was in Class B. With Wickenden’s 72 was Luke Ruffing of Maranacook with a 71, Gavin Dugas of Maine Central Institute with a 74 and Reese McFarlane of Cape Elizabeth with a 75.

Nick Audet of Wells, two groups behind, turned in a 74.

Class A and B played the Tomahawk course. Class C played Arrrowhead.

St. Dominic edged Winthrop by a stroke, 329 to 330. Houlton was third with 337.

Mike Richard paced the Saints with a 75. Other scorers were Justin Keaney with an 84, and Mitch Lorenz and Andrew Marcous with 85s. Keaney, a freshman, shot his career round.

The Saints graduated several players from the last three years. Coach Kevin Cullen said he has nine former players playing college golf.

“I didn’t think we would win this year,” he said. “Winthrop is so good. Wiscasset is so good. They both beat us during the regular season. I had a lot of young kids coming in this season. We worked really hard. We’ve been at this course every Saturday since Labor Day practicing. It paid off today.”

Taylor Morang of Wiscasset had the low score in Class C with a 70.

Next Saturday the state individual championships will be played at Natanis. There will be boys’ overall winners in classes A, B and C, and a schoolgirl champion.

Tom Chard can be contacted at 791-6419 or at:

[email protected]

Twitter: TomChardPPH


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