I wish I had a buck for every time I’ve heard one of his competitors finish a round of tournament golf and ask me “what did Mark shoot?”
While the dollar amount wouldn’t make me rich, betcha it would pay for a few greens fees around Maine.
You see, since 1973 (what were you doing 39 years ago?), Mark Plummer has been the gold standard that competitive golfers in Maine compare themselves to. Thirteen times he has won the state amateur title. Six times he has finished runner-up. How many others have dominated their sport like Plummer has in our state? (maybe Charlie Milan with candlepin bowling).
I have reported on Plummer victories over the years at places like
Rockland GC, Penobscot Valley CC, Waterville CC, Augusta CC. When asking golfers how they did after a round of play, most guys say something like “OK…couldn’t putt” or “decent…just didn’t score”. And then, they immediately ask me the question, “what did Mark shoot?”
If Mark Plummer shot a 70, they know their 71 or 73 is OK. If Mark Plummer shot a 68, they know making up a 3 to 5 stroke margin is a tough task. Kind of like it used to be when Tiger Woods dominated the PGA Tour before backing his car into that tree.
And speaking of Tiger, remember Mark Plummer gave him a run for his money back at the U.S. Amateur Golf Championship on that Rhode Island course in 1995. You might say Plummer overshadowed Tiger in the national semifinal in match play. He one-putted 7 times on the first 13 holes. He was tied with Tiger with 5 holes to play. He took him all the way to the 18th hole. All of it happening in front of ESPN cameras beaming a signal worldwide. Plummer lost the match but won the heart of the golfing world.
So Mark Plummer will again be among the 132 amateur golfers teeing it up this week in the 93rd Maine State Golf Championship at the Sunday River course in western Maine. And, while I realize his last state amateur title was won a decade ago, I just know some of the guys will walk off that 18th green in Newry and ask…
“What did Mark shoot?”
Then they will know just how good their round was.
ITEMS FROM THE DUFFEL BAG:
— In honor of Plummer’s 13 state titles, I offer the following by-the-numbers
trivia tidbits… Let’s call them Plummer’s Numbers…
1. ECAC college golf title (UMaine 1973)
2. Maine State Individual golf titles (UMaine 1973,1974)
3. State Amateur Championships won in match play format
4. Decades with at least one Maine State Amateur win
5. Father/Son Championships wins with his dad, Stan
6. State Amateur Runner-Up
7. Approximate inches/length of that famous moustache
8. State Championship wins at courses located in County seats
9. 1999 Sports Illustrated ranking among Greatest Maine Sports Figures
10. State Amateur Championships won in stroke play format
11. Different courses he has won at least one State Amateur Title
12. 4 Maine Two-Man Team Titles, plus 4 Maine Mid-Amateur Titles, plus 3 Maine Senior Amateur Titles, plus 1 Maine Senior Two-Man Title equals 12
13. Add the 1969 Maine State Junior Amateur Title equals 13 (Other championships won along with the 13 Maine State Amateurs)