MALONE — Tournament director Willie King wasn’t expecting scores this low during Thursday’s opening round in the 30th-Annual Masters North Golf Tournament at the Malone Golf Club’s East Course.
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Nine-time champion Graham Cooke carded a one-over-par 73 in extremely windy conditions to hold a one-stroke lead over Peter Malo and Chip Ward heading into today’s final round.
“I didn’t expect the scores to be as low like they were,” King said. “The course was set up where it was challenging, and the wind was brutal. The conditions were very difficult to play in (Thursday).
“But surprisingly, there were a lot of good scores. Graham shot a 73, and he never goes very high. That’s going to make him very tough to beat (today), especially with the conditions expected to be better.
“Shooting 74s like Peter and Chip did was also very impressive.”
At 76, three strokes back, were Troy Collins, Cody Roberts and Greg Wilson. Another stroke back, at 77, were Mike Patenaude, John Blain, Michael Jolin and Michael Roberts, who rallied on the back nine.
Fifteen golfers in the 42-player field broke 80 from the tournament tees, including defending champion David Passino Jr., who carded a 79. Matt King, a three-time Masters North runner-up, is at 78.
Passino denied Cooke his 10th green jacket last year when he won on the first playoff hole with an eagle.
Leading the Legends Field, which played from the white tees, was Gord Hanna with an 80.
Butch Plimpton was a stroke back at 81, while Phil Arsenault and two-time defending champion John Esterbrook shot 82.
Four strokes separate nine golfers in the Legends field.
“The Legends is up for grabs,” King said. “Anybody who shot 84 (Thursday) or better can still win it.”
Tee times for the Legends begin at 9:24 today, with the first group in the Masters North field going off at 10:12 a.m.
2013 Masters North results
73- Graham Cooke
74- Peter Malo, Chip Ward
76- Troy Collins, Cody Roberts, Greg Wilson
77- Mike Patenaude, John Blain, Michael Roberts, Michael Jolin
78- Matt King, Paul Ahlgrim
79- Dave Johnston, Steve Moffat, David Passino Jr.
80- Zach Meade, Dave Kokes, Eric Labounty, Joe Tufo, Bart VanLeuvan, Ed Davis
81- Robin Weeden, Tom Raville, Tim Barcomb
82- Serge Dagenais, Jeff Fallon
83- Steve Ahlgrim, Graham Niles, Nick Politi
84- Chad Welch
85- Bob Hughes
86- Brandon Smith, Andrew Duso
87- Matt Davis, Tom Post
88- Don Mortenson, Steve Labombard
91- Bill Fisher
92- Jeff Delamater, Len Freitas
93- Kevin McKee
95- Ryan Kirkpatrick
2013 Masters North Legends
80- Gord Hanna
81- Butch Plimpton
82- John Esterbrook, Phil Arsenault
83- Michael O’Connor, Pierre Archambault, Mickey Batten, Frank Kay
84- Bob Zuckerman
87- James Smith
88- Steve Johnson, Larry Jeffords
89- Gerry Murphy, John Tulloch
91- Dave Lamora, Chuck Voorhees
92- Paul Lambert
99- Pete Sorrell
Today’s tee times
Masters North Legends
9:24 a.m.- Paul Lambert, Dave Lamora
9:32 a.m.- Chuck Voorhees, Gerry Murphy, John Tulloch
9:40 a.m.- Steve Johnson, Larry Jeffords, James Smith
9:48 a.m.- Bob Zuckerman, Michael O’Connor, Pierre Archambault
9:56 a.m.- Mickey Batten, Frank Kay, John Esterbrook
10:04 a.m.- Phil Arsenault, Butch Plimpton, Gord Hanna
10:12 a.m.- Ryan Kirkpatrick, Kevin McKee, Len Freitas
10:20 a.m.- Jeff Delamater, Bill Fisher, Steve Labombard
10:28 a.m.- Don Mortenson, Tom Post, Matt Davis
10:36 a.m.- Andrew Duso, Brandon Smith, Bob Hughes
10:44 a.m.- Chad Welch, Nick Politi, Graham Niles
10:52 a.m.- Steve Ahlgrim, Jeff Fallon, Serge Dagenais
11 a.m.- Tim Barcomb, Tom Raville, Robin Weeden
11:08 a.m.- Ed Davis, Bart VanLeuvan, Joe Tufo
11;16 a.m.- Eric Labounty, Dave Kokes, Zach Meade
11:24 a.m.- David Passino Jr., Steve Moffat, Dave Johnston
11:32 a.m.- Matt King, Paul Ahlgrim, Michael Jolin
11:40 a.m.- Michael Roberts, John Blain, Mike Patenaude
11:48 a.m.- Greg Wilson, Troy Collins, Cody Roberts
11:56 a.m.- Chip Ward, Peter Malo, Graham Cooke