BOXFORD — Seven putts and an afternoon wind that was picking up speed with each passing hole made it difficult, but Gloucester’s Josh Salah persevered.
Salah shot a second-round 74 to capture the 39th Annual North Shore Amateur Golf Championship by one stroke yesterday at Far Corner Golf Course.
Salah, who plays out of Bass Rocks, entered the day in second place, trailing by one shot. His 74 was enough to edge out second-place finishers Craig Farley of North Andover Country Club and Phil Miceli of Sagamore. Salah’s two-day total was 146, while Farley and Miceli came in at 147.
A fast start — birdies on the second and third holes — had Salah thinking about a low score, but he four-putted on the fourth hole, then three-putted the 18th hole to make things interesting.
“I figured somebody would go low and I just wanted to make sure I stayed aggressive. But, as the round went on, it kept getting harder and harder as the wind picked up. It was probably the hardest I’ve seen this course play in awhile,” Salah said. “On four, I hit a great shot in there to about 12 feet and I had a little brain fart and four-putted. I don’t know if it just kind of got me to focus a little more. After I made those two (bridies) it felt easy and I just lost my focus a little on the green. From there on in, I kind of hung in there.”
After four-putting, Salah played the next nine holes at even par, carding a birdie on 12.
His three-putt bogey on 18 proved to be a non-factor.
“I knew that putt was going to be quick,” said Salah, a former Gloucester High and Sacred Heart University standout. “I wanted to make it and I was probably a little too aggressive with it, but I had been putting so well the last two days that I wasn’t even thinking about the next one. I just lost my focus on that and hit a bad putt. I’m glad it didn’t come down to that.”