The play is according to the new USGA Rules of Golf that became effective 1/1/19.  You will find them easier and friendlier.  A brief summary of the most important Rules follows. The links at each of the Rules below are to USGA videos that help explain the new rules.   There are additional videos about other new rules on the following index page for your viewing pleasure


The GSGL local rules include New Rule #4 and make the ten exceptions on the next page.


 New Rules:

1.  Dropping ball for relief: Drop from knee height.


2.  Measuring relief distance:  Use longest club (not putter).


3.  Double-hits:  No penalty.  

4.  Ball lost or OB: Drop in vicinity of where it went out (including fairway); 2-stroke penalty.


5.  No penalties if ball is accidentally moved


6.  No penalty if putt hits flagstick (so can leave flag in). (Great for 2nd and 8th greens!).


7.  No penalty for touching ground, vegetation, or water in penalty areas (hazards) or for moving loose impediments.


8.  No penalty for moving loose impediments in a bunker or for accidentally touching the sand, but you cannot “test” the sand surface.  You can’t “ground your club” behind the ball. You can drop outside bunker with two-stroke penalty.


9.  Can only search for a lost ball for 3 minutes!  Play all strokes in less than 40 seconds.







GSGL Exceptions:

1.            Stroke limit: Pick up after 5 strokes over par, mark “P”.  Hole tied if both Pickup. Actual +5 wins over a  “P”.


2.            Preferred lies:  Ball in fairway or mowed rough may be marked, lifted, cleaned & placed within one club length, but no closer to pin.  Do not improve course position (rough to fairway, fairway to fringe, fringe to green).


3.            Provisional ball: You may announce & hit a Provisional Ball but must use it if the original is lost or OB; you no longer have the new 2-stroke penalty drop option described above in #4. So think carefully; you probably only want to hit a Provisional Ball if the lost or OB ball is just a short distance away (or you are supremely confident that your Provisional Ball will be hit superbly).


4.            Ground under repair”:  Bare or rocky ground, if your opponent agrees, and the “Conway’s Creek” ditch on #9. Free drop within 1 club length of nearest point of relief, no nearer hole.  (This is a free drop so you can’t go all the way back to the fairway).


5.            Forward (Red) Tees:  Players 80 or older by April 1 play from Red tees, unless exception from the President.  There will be an initial 3-stroke handicap difference between tees.


6.            Screens, Netting, Fences, Tee Box timbers:  Free stance or swing relief, but NOT line-of-ballflight relief for next shot.


7.            Drop Zone #4: If your drive goes in the pond (or nearby woods) you may re-tee or hit from Drop Zone left of cart path just beyond the water. That next hit is your third shot either way.


8.            Out of Bounds, # 1, #6, & #7: The white stakes along the left side of #1, #6, and #7 mark Out of Bounds (OB). If your entire ball is outside the inner edge of that line, it is OB.  You are not allowed to hit a ball that is OB. See New Rule #4, or Exception #3.


9.            Out of Bounds #9: On/over the road or in the parking area is OB.   See New Rule #4 and Exception #3.


10.         Played the Wrong Ball: If you play the wrong ball, you receive a two-stroke penalty on that hole. (It is not an automatic loss of hole as in normal match play because our scoring has both match play and stroke play aspects and it would be a double penalty to incur both).



General Information 2019


1.       The 2019 Groton Senior Golf League will consist of teams composed of 4 golfers ranked in separate flights A through D, according to handicaps. The League plays every Tuesday morning with a shotgun start commencing at 8:45AM. The season consists of alternating scrambles and matches, according to the published schedule, except changed when necessitated by schedule conflicts in the facility and by inclement weather, as described below. Scramble weeks are team nine-hole scrambles followed by a Cookout at which the four teams with the lowest scores receive cash prizes. (Ties are resolved by determining the lowest scores on the handicap holes). Match weeks are individual nine-hole matches between ranked players utilizing their then-current GSGL handicaps, and Low NET cash prizes are awarded for each flight at a subsequent Cookout.  Scrambles and matches have different priority if inclement weather cancels play. If a scramble is cancelled, it will be played the following week and the scheduled match will be scratched. If a match is cancelled, the scheduled scramble will be played the following week and the cancelled match will NOT be rescheduled. At the end of the season, on the Tuesday following the last match or scramble, the GSGL Tournament and Cookout will be held. At that cookout, in addition to awarding the Tournament prizes, prizes will be awarded to the teams accumulating the most match points throughout the season as well as individual prizes for points earned in the matches played throughout the season. 


2.       Membership: All golfers 55 years young and older who have a GHIN Handicap Index, a GSGL handicap or a handicap from another GCC league are eligible. Golfers without either a GHIN Handicap Index, GSGL handicap or GCC League handicap are eligible as full-time players or as substitutes ONLY after they turn in three attested Groton CC scorecards.


3.       Costs: Dues are $80.00 per golfer or $150.00 per couple. Dues pay for the luncheons and monetary prizes but DO NOT cover greens fees or cart rentals. Non-Groton Country Club members will pay a reduced greens fee and, for players wishing to ride, a reduced nine-hole cart rental. These reduced rates apply only for Tuesday morning’s league play, not for make-up matches at other times.


4.       Type of play for regular scrambles (there may be occasional modified scrambles which will be explained to the captains prior to play):


a.     Each team player will drive, and then the team captain will select the ball to be used. Each player will take his/her second shot from the location of that ball. The selected ball location continues to be used until the ball is holed. However, each team must use at least one (1) Tee Shot of each player even though it may not be the best ball.

b.    In the event a team has less than four (4) players for a scramble, the team will get ONE extra putt on each green. However, the extra putt must be rotated among the remaining players. On the first hole a designated player will take the extra putt for the missing player. The putt must be rotated to a different player for each hole until it has been rotated through all the players. When this has been completed, the putt must go back to the first designated player and the same rotation repeated until the round is completed. Regardless of how many players are missing, ONLY ONE EXTRA PUTT may be taken per hole.  The rotation of the putt does not occur until after the putt has actually been used, and the order of rotation can be any systematic order selected by the team. A shot using a putter from the fringe of the green is not a putt, only shots made on a ball resting on the green are considered putts. Any ball touching any part of the green is considered as being “on the green”.

c.     If a team player cannot make a scramble, he/she must notify the team captain in advance no later than 4 PM on the Sunday prior to the scramble. The captains will notify Nancy Cappallo  (978-3022125) by 4:30PM on the Sunday prior to the scramble to obtain a substitute.

d.    A substitute will pay a $3 entry fee for participating in the scramble to cover the cost of lunch and prizes. Eligible substitutes (those having a current GCC handicap, a GSGL handicap or GHIN Index) who wish to participate in the end-of-year tournament will be charged a $10 entry fee.


5.       Type of play for matches


a.     Matches will be between individual players in the same flight from different teams. No “gimmies”, all holes must be putted out in order to have accurate scores for calculating handicaps.

b.    Scoring will be net of the player’s handicap. The highest handicap player will receive as many strokes as their handicaps differ (half strokes are also given). Strokes are assigned to the number 1 (lowest) stroke hole as listed on the scorecard and then the second, etc.

c.     Point scoring: Two (2) points are awarded to the lowest net score on each of the nine (9) holes. Each player receives one (1) point in case of a tie on a hole. The player with the lowest total NET score also receives two

(2) points.  At the conclusion of the match the combined points of the two players will always total twenty (20) points. NO GIMMIES! 

d.    Scorecards: The scorecard must be filled out completely and signed by both players.

e.     Make-up matches: Although it is strongly encouraged, occasionally it will not be possible for two opponents to play at the assigned time. It is the responsibility of the person that is unable to play to contact his/her

opponent PRIOR TO THE SCHEDULED MATCH to schedule a make-up match, or FORFEIT THE MATCH. Matches may be played anytime prior to the scheduled date but no later than 6 PM the following TUESDAY. In any event, the scorecards for such matches must be turned in to the GSGL Box in the proshop no later than 6 PM the following TUESDAY. If the players cannot agree upon a time to reschedule the match, then within the time frame stipulated, both players are expected to declare that they are playing a makeup round (with at least one other person), then have that round and scorecard dated, signed, and witnessed. If both players turn in a card, then Item i is in effect. If only the available player turns in such a

card, then Item ii is utilized.

i-                       match cards: each player will turn in a dated, signed and witnessed scorecard to be used for matching.

That round must be declared prior to playing as being played as a make-up round for that specific match. A player MAY NOT arbitrarily choose an already played round and turn it in as a make-up card. The first card submitted by a player as a match card will be the only card that will be accepted.

ii-                     play net against par and receive whatever points he/she wins but no less than 9 points. The unavailable player then receives no points. The same rules as above apply to the scorecard turned in for this purpose. iii-If a member is unable to play a match within the prescribed makeup period due to an "emergency situation as determined by the President of the GSGL" and has telephoned the President by the end of day Monday preceding the scheduled match, a substitute will be sought.  If none is found, the opponent will play the match against the absent player’s handicap score.  The minimum 9 point guarantee for matches played against an otherwise absent opponent would not apply.

f.     No substitutes will be allowed for matches unless the absent player is determined to be unable to play or make up the match for serious reasons of an unexpected nature, or out for the season or extended period of time due to illness/injury and may, at the discretion of the President then be substituted for, if an appropriate substitute is available, either temporarily for the duration of the injury/illness or for the remainder of the season.

g.    Match play Low NET prize eligibility: At the scramble Cookouts, cash prizes are awarded for the 1st and 2nd

Low NET scores in each flight in the previous week’s matches.  To be eligible for these prizes, the scorecard MUST be turned in by noon on the day of the scheduled match.  No late/makeup cards will be eligible for these prizes.  However, matches played prior to the scheduled match date may be turned in early and qualify for the prizes.