Local golfer wins Massachusetts Amateur Tournament days after sudden passing of his father

CONCORD, Mass. — EDITOR’S NOTE: The original version of this story incorrectly stated that Willett won the championship at the Charles River Country Club. The story has been updated with the correct location of the tournament.

A local golfer won the 114th Massachusetts Amateur Golf Tournament on Friday, just days after his father passed away suddenly and unexpectedly from complications resulting from a choking incident.

RELATED: Tragedy and triumph for local golfer Conner Willett

Wellesley’s Conner Willett defeated Longmeadow native Ryan Downes, 4 & 2, in match play finals at the Concord Country Club. Ryan was the youngest competitor in this year’s tournament and he and Conner are friends.

Conner is a 19-year-old sophomore at Georgetown University. He and his dad, Rick, had played golf out of Charles River Country Club.

The first day of this year’s Mass Am was Monday July 11. Conner’s dad died the day before, on Sunday.

Conner and his family made the difficult decision for him to play and compete. On Monday, he won — and then he won again on Tuesday. The winning didn’t stop all week.

Mass Am is a big, big deal. It is put on by Mass Golf and is the local equivalent of the USGA’s US Open, which was recently played at the Country Club in Brookline in June.

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