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Hole-in-one, rain make for unique opening weekend at Hunter

MERIDEN — Substantial rain Saturday and Sunday shut down Hunter Golf Club on the second day of its opening weekend, but the weather didn’t ruin everyone’s golf weekend.

Golf pro Bob Tiedeman said 60 to 70 golfers — including his brother, Paul Tiedeman — came through Saturday morning before the rain started.

Paul Tiedeman, 54, of Wallingford, scored his first hole-in-one in over 40 years of golfing, just as the rain started falling Saturday.

“I actually had a pretty good round going,” Paul Tiedeman said, “and I’d been close to getting them before.”

It was on the 17th hole, a 160-yard par 3, that Paul Tiedeman sunk the hole-in-one using a six-iron. “To tell you the truth, I was kind of disgusted when I hit the shot; it wasn’t one of my better shots, and I wasn’t even sure if it was going to reach the green. But then it took a couple of bounces, rolled onto the green and disappeared down the hole,” he said. Tiedeman was playing with Steve Mandeville, of Meriden, Ray Desroisier and Bill Butler, both of Wallingford.

While some might overlook a less than perfect shot for its result, Paul Tiedeman is used to critiquing his game. He was captain of the University of Connecticut golf team in 1981, and a former golf pro at Norwich and New Haven golf clubs, before switching careers. He works now for AT&T, and he says he “gets out on the course whenever I can.”

On Saturday, he ended up shooting a 73, just two over par.

“Hey, it’s a one on the scorecard,” Paul Tiedeman said, “but I woke up this (Sunday) morning and didn’t feel a whole lot different.”

He didn’t get the chance to try again on Sunday, however, as the weather forced course officials to close the course because of flooding.

Meteorologist Gary Lessor said as much as 2.73 inches of rain had fallen in Meriden by Sunday afternoon.

“You’re going to get these types of storms where there’s cold air coming down the coast and warm air coming up, and you’ll get these drenching rains, with lots of run-off today as a result,” said Lessor, of Western Connecticut State University’s Weather Center.

“I’m looking at a lake on Hole 10,” Paul Tiedeman said Sunday.

Hunter opened a few weeks later this year than usual, due to low temperatures and some late snowfall, but Bob Tiedeman said the financial impact should be minimal.

“Obviously the sooner you start, the sooner you start making money. But you don’t usually forecast too much revenue in March anyway,” he said.

He added that he was disappointed to have to close on a Sunday, as “that’s usually the busiest day of the week. So much depends on the weather, though.”

His brother Paul added that he thought “by and large the course got through the winter pretty well. It’s in good shape and the greens are rolling pretty good.

“It’s the type of course where you get to hit every club in the bag,” he said. (203) 317-2279 Twitter: @MollCal

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