Nashua’s Pleat ready for New Hampshire Amateur golf

The incentive has never been greater. Opportunity knocks, perhaps like it never might again for Nashua’s James Pleat.

The 115th New Hampshire Amateur kicks off Sunday at Hanover Country Club, and Pleat, a former Dartmouth College standout gets another shot at history, just like everyone else in the field.

Of course, the 2011 State Am semifinalist, will be competing on his home away from home at Hanover CC. It’s an edge that he’s hoping will make a serious difference.

“I was there for four years. I played a bunch of rounds, and I know it pretty well,” said Pleat. “The greens are still pretty tough to read.”

Pleat recently returned to Hanover for his five-year reunion and still owns an affinity for the town, the school and certainly the golf course.

“It’s always nice to go back up. You bring up a lot of memories driving through the campus, and there was a lot of time spent on the golf course as well. I still think back to freshman year and playing in the Dartmouth Invitational.

“It’s obviously a beautiful spot. It always brings back good memories and good vibes.”

Course familiarity has worked for Pleat before. That 2011 run to the semis came on his home track at Nashua Country Club.

The State Amateur is obviously extremely special to Pleat. His father, Phil, also playing in this field, is a three-time champion, the last coming in 1997.

His grandfather, Thomas J. Leonard Jr. is an eight-time champion.

“I grew up watching (Phil) play in the State Am. My uncle, my cousin played in it, too,” said James. “Having my name on the trophy is definitely important to me, obviously. I would love to win it.