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Huntington's Saladino wins the Richardson

Amateur Joe Saladino of the Huntington Country Club.

Amateur Joe Saladino of the Huntington Country Club. (July 21, 2009) Credit: Newsday / Joseph D. Sullivan

Joe Saladino of Huntington is like every other Northeast golfer in that he found it a joy just to compete after a long winter. He is more than a little different, though, in that he finished 2010 at the top and began 2011 the same way.

Only a few months after he collected trophies as the Metropolitan Golf Association and Long Island Golf Association Player of the Year, Saladino earned another one Saturday in the LIGA’s Richardson Invitational. It was his first victory in the 64-year-old tournament at the Seawane Club in Hewlett.

“Whenever you win an event for the first time, it feels great. And when it’s the Richardson, and you see all the great names on that trophy, it’s pretty cool,” he said. His wasn’t the only taste of déjà vu: Steve Rose of Fresh Meadow, winner of the 2010 Long Island Senior Open, won the Richardson senior division.

Saladino said he had not played much golf this spring.“I changed up my workouts and I worked on my short game a little bit,” he said. “I think everybody was just excited about getting out there again.”

Leading amateurs will be out there again Thursday with the start of the long-running Havemeyer Invitational at Southward Ho in Bay Shore.

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