WellesleyWeston Magazine


Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

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Page 83 of 195

Life's Back Nine holding" member at this proud country club rich in New England tradition. From the dis- cerning eye of her golf coach, Skip Guss, and guidance from her mentor, Paul Murphy, Kuong received direction on how to elevate her game in the same ways she demanded as a coach to her swimmers. Murphy and Guss describe Kuong as a competitor who is fundamentally sound, consistent, and is solid ice under fire. Because she doesn't over-think her shots, she rarely hits off the fairway. "I think Pammie's greatest asset is that she still has the burn. She's a 51-year-old playing with a 12-year-old heart, Murphy says. " Debuting at the amateur level at age 45, Kuong medaled. At age 46, she stunned the Massachusetts amateur golf world by defeating more experienced golfers at the 2008 championships. Like an undrafted NHL player, Kuong's relative obscurity was overshadowed by the achievements of her caddy, Jim Logue, who beat leukemia, was inducted into the Boston College Varsity Club Hall of Fame, and rep- resented the United States as a member of the hockey team competing in the 1968 Winter Olympics in Grenoble, France. He still holds the record for the most saves during an Olympic contest—65—versus a seemingly invincible Russian team. Pam Kuong's list of accomplishments over the last five years is an impressive one. Among other honors, she has twice been a member of the USGA state team and she has won the Charles River Club champi- onship three years in a row. As of this writing, Kuong is the reigning Do You Want to Compete? Interested in entering a MASSACHUSETTS STATE AMATEUR GOLF TOURNAMENT? The following Web sites have information on upcoming events. Tournaments are listed for different ability levels based on handicaps. n MGALINKS.ORG (men and junior boy events) n WGAM.ORG (women and junior girl events) Pam Kuong proudly displaying the Women's Golf Association of Massachusetts Championship cup. New England Amateur Champion. And what about the battle for the 2010 Massachusetts Women's Amateur Golf championship title? …The elusive 18th hole became blurry. The moist air was heavy, suffocating. Eight feet seemed like eight miles. Kuong realized that all the sacrifice, shots, drills, mental preparation, games played, people's selfless support, and lofty expectations to "repre- sent" by winning on her home course came down to this putt. She also knew that one errant thought could throw her putt off by a quarter-inch, causing the golf ball to flirt with the 18th hole's rim before veering off in a tangent. While she kneeled to line up the shot with her caddy, Peter McCarthy, standing behind her, he said: "Pam, you need to hit it 'right center'" (to compensate for the green breaking slightly to the left). Calmly, Kuong asked, "Are you sure?" "Positive!" Adjusting her grip and shifting, Kuong's eyes darted back and forth from her golf ball toward glory. As caddy and competitor were connected, the golf ball and 18th hole became one. She took the shot. In slow motion the ball willed its way toward its destiny, breaking left and falling into the 18th hole. The absolute silence was broken by an emotional uproar from the audience that snapped Kuong from her trance, ending the shootout. Once is luck, twice isn't. Incredibly, weeks prior Kuong told McCarthy that she visualized her last shot. She dreamed that the pin's placement (the 18th hole) would be located in the back-left portion of the green, which is exactly where it was that day. "Since I dreamt of the pin's place- ment I had visualized that putt at least 100 times. Therefore, I believed I made that shot 100 times. So I simply executed," Kuong shrugged. Winning is sweet but fleeting. However, the pride and sheer joy of accomplishing a goal lasts forever. That evening before the sun's orange rays retreated, the lingering rainbow served as a reminder that we're never too old to shoot for our dreams. 82 WellesleyWeston Magazine | summer 2012 BRIAN SMITH

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