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Laudone wins first club title

WESTERLY —Lou Laudone defeated Kyle James on Sunday, Aug. 10 in the finals of the club championship at Winnapaug Country Club.

Laudone won 5 and 4 in the 36-hole contest. Laudone defeated Mike Benevides, Chuck Falcone, Ray Barry and 2001 champion Jim Chiaradio on his way to the win. It was Laudone’s first win in any flight of the annual Winnapaug tournament.

The two players were even after playing 26 holes when Laudone won three straight to take control of the match.

“Neither one of us played exceptionally well. There were some good shots in between but I called it ugly golf,” Laudone said. “A wise man told me when I was coaching basketball a good team wins ugly games. You kind of try to outlast the other guy in golf and try to hit one shot better.”

Laudone has played in the club tournament 10 times and hasn’t always qualified for the championship flight. The field in the top flight featured 16 golfers this year.

Laudone’s narrowest margin of victory in the tournament came in the win over Chiaradio in the semifinal round on July 27. Laudone made par on the 20th hole played as the players needed extra holes to determine a winner.

“Jimmy is a very good golfer. For me it always seems like I have to go through him and I was lucky enough to do it this year,” Laudone said.

James defeated Pete Chiaradio, Jim Burbine, two-time champ John Donahue and Andrew MacMahon on his way to the championship match.

In other action in the Winnapaug club tournament, Chris Jurgasik downed Steve Gardner 3 and 2 in the first flight and Leo Lariviere bested Larry Casey 2 and 1 in the second flight.

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