By: Bryan Brown

Taken by: Thomas Blake, Castleton University Athletics

WestConn Golf’s Marco DiNardo scored a hole-in-one in the final round of September’s Castleton Invitational and dedicated the play to his late grandfather.

When the final round began, it was just another weekend playing golf for Marco DiNardo. He and the rest of the WestConn men’s golf team were at the Rutland Country Club in Vermont on Sunday, Sept. 23 for the final round of the invitational. The team started the day in last place.

DiNardo, a sophomore at WCSU from Hopewell Junction, New York, says he was playing to honor the memory of his grandfather who died earlier in the month. On the par-3 15th hole, he hit the shot of his life.

“Once I hit the ball, I knew it was gonna be close, it had that feel to it,” DiNardo said. “Once it hit the green, it took the right slope and hit the pin. The ball disappeared, and I realized something very special happened.”

The ball did not disappear by some illusion or magic act; it vanished from DiNardo’s view by falling directly into the hole. The first hole-in-one of his life.

“It always has been a dream,” he said. “To any golfer, a hole-in-one is something that lives with you forever and I’ll cherish that forever.”

DiNardo finished the day with a score of 90 to claim 18th place in the tournament (89-90 – 179), and WestConn captured fifth place as a team (385-379 – 755). He will join WestConn at the 2018 NEIGA Championships October 20-22. Speaking of his grandfather, DiNardo said, “It meant the absolute world to me to get a hole-in-one in his honor. He was definitely with me, I just felt it.”