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Nashawtuc’s Jeremy Meade leads after first round of Massachusetts Amateur golf championship

Jeremy Meade hit the exact number he needed to qualify for the Massachusetts Amateur golf championship last month at Pocasset Golf Club. In Monday’s first round of the 112th edition of the tournament at The Bay Club in Mattapoisett, the 39-year-old Wayland resident not only shot 10 strokes better, but he finished in the lead with a 4-under-par 67.

“It feels good but a lot of golf left tomorrow,” said Meade, a former standout for Division III Ohio Wesleyan University who plays out of Nashawtuc Country Club.

Meade leads by one stroke over a pair of former Catholic Conference standouts, Chris Francoeur (Amesbury G & CC) and Natick’s Andrew McInerney (Charter Oak CC). Eleven of the 144 players finished even-par or better. The players will switch courses Tuesday – The Kittansett Club in Marion is also being used for the tournament – for the second and final round of stroke play before the field is cut to the top 32 for match play, which takes place Wednesday-Friday at Kittansett.

Meade played his first Mass. Amateur in 1999 at Kittansett, and did not have a perfect round Monday because of a few three-putts on the front nine. But after making the turn at even-par, he made three birdies and holed out for an eagle from about 95 yards on the par-5 11th. His shot landed left of the pin, spun right, and dropped.

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”It was really just hitting some fairways and greens,” Meade said. “I hit some awful putts on the front, holed a few on the back. I really just kept it out in front of me and knocked it close on a couple of holes. I sort of just hung on, nothing special.” He will tee off at Kittansett at 7:42 Tuesday morning with the same playing partners, David Spitz (South Shore CC) and Doug Clapp (Old Sandwich GC).

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McInerney, a two-time state champion at Xaverian High, is a rising senior at the University of Richmond. He was tied with Francoeur, a St. John’s Prep grad who held the solo lead after the first round of last year’s championship at The Country Club. Francoeur, a rising senior standout at the University of Rhode Island, was the top scorer at Kittansett on Monday.

Among the players at even par was 2017 champion Matt Parziale (Thorny Lea), who was fresh off his victory at the Norfolk County Classic over the weekend. He finished 2-under at Kittansett, starting with a birdie on the first two holes and finishing with another on the par-5 18th. Rob Owen (The Country Club), also a member at Kittansett, also finished 2-under despite a double bogey on the first hole and finishing 2-over on the front nine. He closed with an eagle on No. 18.