News for the course

MSGA player of year: Anderson tees up top honor

Kannegieser, Cole also feted as top women, senior players of season
By Staff | Nov 08, 2019
Courtesy of: Florida State University Cole Anderson of Camden.

Cumberland — As the 2019 golf season comes to a close, the Maine State Golf Association has announced its annual player of the year recipients — and one is a Camden resident who now toils for the Florida State University Seminoles.

After the three season-long points races with events at courses across the state, Cole Anderson has been named the Dr. Leonardo Buck men's player of the year, Kristin Kannegieser as the women’s player of the year and Len Cole as the senior player of the year.

Anderson, 19, who lives in Camden, plays at Samoset Resort Golf Club in Rockport and now toils for the Florida State University golf team, will receive the Dr. Leonardo Buck player of the year title for the first time. The award goes to the player who accrues the most points in MSGA tournaments from August to July in a wrap-around season.

"It's an honor to be named player of the year," said Anderson. "There are a lot of legends of Maine golf on that list so to be added alongside guys like Mark Plummer and Ricky Jones is special.

"Being in Florida now I've gained even more appreciation for being able to call Maine home. A lot of people saw being from Maine as a disadvantage for me from a golf perspective, but I wouldn't change a thing. It's a special place and I'm looking forward to getting back home for the summer."

Anderson began the points race early last fall, as he defeated Drew Powell in the finals of the Match Play Invitational at Falmouth Country Club for his first MSGA championship. After a win in an MSGA mid-week event at his home course at the Samoset in the spring, Anderson was in good shape on the points table heading down the final stretch.

Coming into this year’s 100th Maine Amateur Championship at Portland Country Club, Anderson was hungry and determined to improve on his finishes of third and second in the past two amateurs. Following an opening round 65 at this year's event, the then 18-year old went wire-to-wire to win the state’s premier amateur championship for the first time in his young career.

His three-day total of 201, after he shot a 65 in round one, 69 in round two and 67 in the final round, put Anderson at 9-under par, and won the tournament by eight strokes, which brought him to an astonishing combined 16-under par in the final three Maine Amateur Championships.

Anderson finished with three first-place finishes in the three tournaments he competed, as he amassed 445 points, which was 10 more than Caleb Manuel of Brunswick Golf Club in second.

Anderson is in his first year at Florida State University playing on a golf scholarship for the Seminoles. He plans to return to Maine following the completion of his first year at FSU.

The women’s player of the year award is only in its second year of existence, following the merger of the MSGA with the two state women’s associations of Maine at the start of 2018.

The women’s player of the year race runs from the start to the end of the calendar year, with points awarded at MSGA championships on the weekly Tuesday events. Kannegieser had a successful past golf career in Maine, but this marked the first time she has won the player-of-year honor due to the award’s brief history.

Kannegieser got an early win in her season by claiming the 2019 Mixed Championship at Fairlawn Golf Course in Poland with her son, Will.

For the longtime Martindale member, and resident of Minot, it was the second straight year she and Will won the championship. Her team finished second at the Metropolitan Championship in June at Fox Ridge Golf Club in Auburn, and she also claimed a third-place finish at the Maine Women’s Amateur Championship in July at Webhannet Golf Club in Kennebunk.

In addition to championship events, she also won seven MSGA Tuesday one-day events to cement her position atop the points table.

It marked the second consecutive season Cole had been named as the senior player of the year. This points race also spans the winter months and runs from September to August each season. Since turning age 55 in 2017, and joining the senior ranks, the Scarborough resident has been the man to beat at most event’s he has entered. He kept that form again this year, as he collected more MSGA hardware along the way.

Cole claimed the senior four-ball title with partner Mark Plummer for the second straight year, carding an impressive 62 at Biddeford-Saco Country Club. He won the parent-child championship with his son, Ryan, in June at Natanis Golf Club, and grabbed his third trophy with his Falmouth Country Club teammates at the senior club team championship in July at Belgrade Lakes Golf Club.

In addition to the championship wins, Cole won three senior tour events and the senior flight in five weekend events en route to his second straight senior player-of-the-year award.

Courier Publications' sports staff can be reached by email at sports@villagesoup.com or by phone at 594-4401.

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