More Championship Milestones for Fran Marrello

Captures his 8th Senior Connecticut PGA Championship title and secures Section Senior Player of the Year for the 10th time

SIMSBURY, Conn. (August 31, 2022) – Perhaps it’s easy to be self-deprecating when you have had as successful a golf competition career as Fran Marrello. Or maybe that’s just the sort of attitude that wins championships.

Yesterday, Marrello, a 68-year-old PGA Life Member whose Connecticut Section PGA member championship wins spans over five decades, captured his 8th Senior Connecticut PGA Championship title at Hop Meadow Country Club, coming from behind and posting a 2-under par 70 for a 36-hole 144 total and a one-stroke margin of victory.

Asked if he knew where he stood on the leaderboard, Marrello wryly offered this:

“Coming to the 16th tee when I saw Dennis (Dungee, section tournament director) I knew I was close,” Marrello confessed. “Then, of course, I proceeded to 3-putt 16.”

That put Marrello 2-over par for the championship.

“So, I kind of thought I blew my chance,” Marrello said. “But I got it up and in on 17 for birdie and knocked it in on in two on 18.”

“I hit another horrible first putt but was able to make a 7-footer.”

Meanwhile, a trio of golf professionals – Bob Bigonette (H. Smith Richardson G.C.), Rick Fleury (PGA Life Member), and first-round leader and defending champion Jason Gobleck (Golf Center at Lyman Orchards) either had or shared the lead at one point during the back nine. As they jockeyed back and forth, Marrello (74-70-144) was up ahead making birdies on his final two holes, posting his even par total, and making him the leader in the clubhouse by one-stroke over Bob Mucha (74-71-145) of Edgewood G.C.

Similar to struggles that a few of the Assistants’ Championship competitors had on Hop Meadow’s closing two par 5s holes 17 and 18 on Monday, the same held true for Bigonette, Fleury, and Gobleck.

Bigonette (72-73-145) bogeyed 18, Fleury (72-76-148) bogeyed four of his final five holes, including 18, and Gobleck (70-75-145) bogeyed 17.

With their runner up finish, Mucha, Bigonette, and Gobleck earned the three qualifying spots to play in the Senior PGA Professional national championship which takes place, October 13-16, at Twin Warriors Golf Club in Santa Ana Pueblo, N.M. Marrello did not enter the qualifier.

Host professional Joe Cordani (76-71-147) finished fifth alone in the championship and posted the only other under par round of the final round in addition to Marrello and Mucha. This despite a closing double bogey on hole 18.

Cordani is the first alternate to go to the national championship.

Marrello, who has been using a long putter for as long as anyone can remember, was seen using a short putter in round 1.

“I tried a short putter for a few weeks, and I tried that yesterday and it was pretty awful,” Marrello said. “I hit 16 greens in regulation and to shoot 2-over is disgraceful.”

“Today, I went back to the long putter today and snuck a few in.”

With the victory, Marrello also sealed the Section Senior Player of the Year for a record 10th time. He now has 25 section member championship titles dating back to 1985 when he won his first Assistant Championship. He was reminded that in 1992 he won his third assistant championship title at Hop Meadow.

“Wow, that’s wild. You know, you just gotta keep going. The golf ball doesn’t really know how old I am.”

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 1   Fran Marrello      PGA Life Member                     74-70--144 E   $1,500.00
 T2  Bob Mucha          Edgewood Golf Course                74-71--145 +1  $900.00
 T2  Jason Gobleck      Golf Center at Lyman Orchards       70-75--145 +1  $900.00
 T2  Bob Bigonette      H. Smith Richardson Golf Course     72-73--145 +1  $900.00
 5   Joe Cordani        Hop Meadow Country Club             76-71--147 +3  $600.00
 T6  Mike Martin        Tashua Knolls Golf Course           73-75--148 +4  $450.00
 T6  Rick Fleury        PGA Life Member                     72-76--148 +4  $450.00
 T8  William Wallis     New Haven Country Club              76-73--149 +5  $300.00
 T8  Ron Dellostritto   Fairways Golf Range and Pro Shop    76-73--149 +5  $300.00
 T8  Billy Downes       GreatHorse                          72-77--149 +5  $300.00
 11  Jim Alexander      Brownson Country Club               77-73--150 +6
 T12 Dave Giacondino    Tradition Golf Club at Wallingford  77-74--151 +7
 T12 John Riordan       Longmeadow Country Club             76-75--151 +7
 T12 Kevin Shea         Great Neck Country Club             74-77--151 +7
 T12 Jeff DelRosso      Prospect Golf                       71-80--151 +7
 16  Bart McCarthy      Gillette Ridge Golf Club            73-80--153 +9
 T17 Philip Krick       Mohegan Sun Golf Club               81-73--154 +10
 T17 Steven Carle       Ludlow Country Club                 76-78--154 +10
 T17 Ronnie Pfaefflin   Norfolk Country Club                75-79--154 +10
 T20 Jack McConachie    PGA Life Member                     75-81--156 +12
 T20 John Vitale        Full Circle Golf                    74-82--156 +12
 T22 Jan Wivestad       Northeast Performance Institute     83-74--157 +13
 T22 John Klug          Mill River Country Club             78-79--157 +13
 T22 Glenn Carlson      Torrington Country Club             79-78--157 +13
 T25 Gary Sassu         Chippanee Country Club              81-78--159 +15
 T25 Michael Myszkowski PGA Life Member                     80-79--159 +15
 T25 Dave Cook          Pomperaug Golf Course               78-81--159 +15
 28  Archie Cart        Troon Golf Mgmt/Consult/Develp      78-82--160 +16
 T29 John Nowobilski    PGA Life Member                     83-79--162 +18
 T29 Bobby Brown        Tashua Knolls Golf Course           86-76--162 +18
 31  Bobby Powell       The First Tee of Connecticut        81-82--163 +19