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Landegren Takes Home Golf Title....Story by John Torsiello

POSTED August 21, 2012
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

Shepaug High School senior Mia Landegren of Bridgewater righted a wrong when she won the Connecticut Women’s State Amateur title this past week at Ridgewood Country Club.

Landegren won the 47th annual tournament, a two-day, 36-hole contest, by three shots over her closest competitor. Landegren’s 2-over-par 146 is the lowest in the tournament’s history. Maggie Kennedy of West Hartford and Rockledge Country Club finished second with a 149. The Spartan star fired an even-par 72 and ran out to a four-shot lead after day one. On Thursday, Kennedy finished a shot ahead at 73, but Landegren was still able to take the victory.

Las year, Berkshire League standout Landegren left the state amateur with a bad taste in her mouth after making four bogeys over the final five holes and seeing a one-stroke lead late on the back nine of the final day disappear. Rounds of even-par 72 and six-over 78, gave her a 36-hole total of 150 and third place. Landegren, who plays out of Ridgewood, took control of this year’s event early and never let go. Her 72 on the first day included a blistering three-under par score on the back nine of Ridgewood.

Said Landegren, who will be playing golf in the fall of 2013 at the University of Denver, “It was nice to win this tournament. I had a lot of expectations since it was my home course. Ridgewood has been so generous to let me play there and I wanted to win this for myself but also for the Ridgewood’s members and staff. I could not have done this without all their help and support. I didn’t win last year but winning it at Ridgewood was twice as good.”

In late June, Landegren won the girls division at the Killington Junior Golf Championship, a tournament run by the American Junior Golf Association and held at Green Mountain National Golf Course in Killington, Vt. Landegren closed out the tournament was shoot a six-under-par 64. She won with a three-day score of 213 (73-76-64).

Landegren was nervous going into the Women’s Amateur.

“I wanted to win since I led the event last year with two holes to go. I three-putted the 35th green and tried to recover by playing aggressively to win on the last hole (which back fired). I went into this event feeling great about my game but with the tournament held at my home course I wanted to do really well. A jittery beginning and three-over-par after eight holes made a turn for the better as I got comfortable. I managed to play three-under-par for the next 10 holes and finish even par which I was happy about.”

Landegren admitted that her second round was a bit erratic, forcing her to scramble for much of the day.

“I had some great shots and some pretty uncharacteristic shots. Going into the last couple of holes I made an unnecessary bogey on 16, but came back with a birdie on 17 by hitting a 5-iron to seven feet. The 18th was just an easy par. nothing special.”

Landegren said she never thought about her competitors, or even winning, during her final round. Being four shots ahead to start the day allowed her to be confident but she knew anything could happen. She played her own game, one shot at the time, and it proved good enough.

On her great finish on the first day, she said, “I made stupid mistakes so I ended up being three-over the front nine. I was annoyed with myself, this was my home course so I wanted to go out on the back nine and play my game. I was more focused taking one shot at a time. The 15th hole is a narrow par-four, which caused a lot of heartache for many players. You have to hit a perfect drive which I almost did. I still had to punch my approach shot and create a lot of spin in order to get close. My putt was nine feet and I made it for birdie to get one-over for the day. The 16th was a great hole. A perfect drive and a 200-yard approach shot to reach the par-five in two. I only had a six-foot putt for eagle, which I made to go one under for the day. A bogey on 17 brought me back to even.”

Landegren said she has had an “unbelievable summer.” She cited the 64 at the Vermont tournament and playing in Europe after being chosen as one of six girls to compete for Sweden in the European Team Championship in Germany.

“Against all odds, we won the event by beating England in the quarterfinal, Italy in the semis, and Spain in the final. I won both my semifinal match and the final match against Spain. It was match play, but I can easily say that it was likely my best golf ever. I played one other big team event in Sweden that my home club outside of Stockholm won to bring us up to the elite division for next year.”

She also played in her first European professional event as an amateur, shooting 76-76 on a hard course against very good players.

“I missed the cut by two but was quite happy with the event anyway.”

Landegren will play a Future Collegians World Tour 36-hole qualifier on the 23rd and 24th of August and represent New England in a match against the rest of the U.S. over Labor Day weekend.

“This (New England against the country) is a great invitational tournament held in conjunction with the Deutsche Bank Championship PGA Tour event at the TPC Boston. The tourney will be played at the Boston Golf Club and is organized by the U.S. Challenge Cup along with Deutsche Bank. I’m really looking forward to this.”

Mia Landegren would like nothing better to finish up a magical summer of golf with a few more wins under her belt.

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