CAPTAIN LEADS FROM THE FRONT
Portstewart Club Captain Mark Windebank hit 42 points from his handicap of four on a wet Saturday to win the Club Stableford by a single point.
He got under par with his birdie four on the fourth but dropped two shots at the next. This damage was repaired by a birdy three on the ninth and Mark was content with 20 points from the proceedings.
He had the taste for birdies then as the eleventh was reduced to three shots for four points and the long fourteenth was completed in four to boot. With no shots dropped on the inward nine Mark gained another 22 points for his two under par 34.
42 points was the total, equal to a gross 70, keeping the Captain one in front of another low handicapper Ansley Stewart who scored 41 off two. Ansley also scored 20 points out with the help of birdies on the two par fives.
His bogey four at the sixth meant a gross for the nine holes of one under par 35. He picked up a good three on eleven but had to wait until eighteen for his next birdie. As with the Captain no shots were lost on the back nine giving Ansley 21 for his overall of 41.
Martin O’Kane took the top of the Low Section award for his 41 point return. Birdies on four and eight getting him to the turn with 22 points scored.
No more were to be found but a steadily played back nine gave him 19 points. Stephen McCammon topped the High Section with a good 39 points from his handicap of 23. After a poor start, four point for the opening three holes, Stephen doubled this with four points at the fourth.
He hadn’t peaked even then as he birdied the eighth, with two shots, to put five points on the card.
The front nine finished with 22 scored but Stephen’s good golf did not stop there, he scored well for two thirds of the back nine with a birdie two slipping in on sixteen but seventeen was lurking and gave Stephen nothing at all. 17 points came from the back nine to get Stephen his prize for 39 points.
‘ROCK WIN FOR JOHN
Eleven handicapper John Creaney produced a round of three over par to win the Saturday Stableford competition held at Castlerock GC.
This generated 44 points but that super score was needed as Mark Blair produced the same result losing out on the resulting countback. John had dropped three shots after seven before slipping in a four point birdy three on eight to push his front nine tally to 22 points.
Another birdie, a three pointer this time, was grabbed on the par five eleventh but this was given back with a bogey five on twelve. That was the last deviation from par for John as he rattled off six pars to finish for a matching 22 back.
Mark, playing off fourteen, had a two over par front nine thanks to his brace of birdies, a three to open with and a two on the fourth, and had 23 points bagged by the turn for home.
Three consecutive bogeys from the eleventh set Mark back a bit but another two, on fourteen, brought him back into contention.
His bogey six on the long fifteenth, while not a bad score, proved conclusive in the countback as Mark finished the last nine with 21 on board, one shy of victory.
Low section topper, with 40 points scored from his mark of twelve, was Ronnie McMullan. He was in fine form from the start but a couple of single point holes restricted Ronnie to 18 points out.
He was steadier coming back with an eagle three on the long eleventh pushing the back nine total to 22 for his overall 40.
Best in the High section was Colm McDermott with 41 points from his handicap of eighteen. As with Ronnie, his front nine was blighted by single pointers and ended with a mediocre 17 scored.
It was a different story on the way in as Colm hit overdrive. His start of par, birdie four and par gave him 10 points for three holes and this form was maintained to the end.
He finished the nine three over par and added 24 points to his card to get to 41 for his Section prize. Best of the oldies was Jimmy Templeton with 35 scored from his handicap of nineteen.
He had just sixteen on the card at the turn but rallied on the way in, hitting a birdy three for four points on the thirteenth, to boost his total by 19 to get to 39 at the end.
Brian Lowry scored 36 gross points for his prize, birdying the first and fifth on his way out to get 16 on the card.
Coming back was better with eleven and fifteen falling to birdie fours, sixteen to a two and seventeen to another four. This was a two under par back nine of 35 for Brian and produced 20 gross points to get him to his winning 36.
CLAN McNEILL TAKE SEAPARK CUPS
Brian and Nuala McNeill grabbed the Seapark Cups at Portstewart’s Old Course on Friday evening with a net score of 60.5, one shot better than the rest.
With Brian sporting the McNeill tartan shorts, small cheques, and Nuala in good golfing form they covered the front nine in a steady seven over par 37.
After slipping to a double bogey six on the twelfth hole the run for home contained just three dropped shots and allowed Brian and Nuala to sign up for 40 back, six over, and an 18 hole tally of 77. This netted down to the winning 60.5.
Kelly’s Heroes, PJ and Philomena, were the main rivals for the Cups with a good advantage in the handicaps. They went out in 43 shots and back in 46.
This was adjusted to a net 61.5 and the final hole double bogey told a tale. A four there would have won it for them on countback. But it was not to be and the Cups were awarded to Brian and Nuala later in the clubhouse.
MAGNERS INTERNATIONAL AT BUSHFOOT
Another Ladies Magners International Tournament came to a successful conclusion at Bushfoot Golf Club on Thursday night.
Over the four days 350 ladies played for the excellent prizes on display. There were 39 different clubs represented with the furthest competitors coming from Scotland and producing the winner.
Oona Mummery from the Hilton Park Club Glasgow took the honours on the final day with an excellent score of 43 points.
The weather was kind over the four days and a number of excellent scores were recorded.
The Ladies were very complimentary as to the condition of the course which the green staff had worked so hard to achieve.
All at Bushfoot Golf Club look forward to welcoming the ladies back next year.
WINNER OF THE FINAL DAY AND CAUSEWAY COAST CUP 2014
Oona Mummery, Hilton Glasgow, (18) 43Points
Final Day Placings. Thursday 5th June 2014
First Oona Mummery. Hilton Glasgow (18) 43 Points
Second Maggie Penny, Portstewart, (15) 40 Points
Best Gross: Violet Mcbride, Belvoir Park, 28 Gross Points
Third: Suzanne Brown, Portstewart, (27) 40 Points
Fourth Rosaleen Mcguinness, Castlerock, (21) 38 Points
Fifth: Dawn Mccartney,Bushfoot, (18) 37 Points
Best Visitor: Audrey Faulkner (Stitt), Larne (12) 35 Points
Wednesday 4th June 2014
1St Mary Molloy, Donaghadee, (23) 37 Points
2Nd Sharon Heggan, Larne, (29) 36 Points
Best Gross : Fionnuala Mcgrady, Bushfoot, 22 Gross Points
3Rd Hazel Brown, Portstewart, (19) 36 Points
Tuesday 3rd June 2014
1St Mary Teresa Mckiernan, Ballycastle, (10) 41 Points
2Nd Sheila Orr, Bushfoot, (23) 41 Points
Best Gross: Alice Trufelli, Bushfoot (23) Gross Points
3Rd May Johnston, Portstewart, (29) 39 Points
Monday 2nd June 2014
1St Muriel Robinson, Mahee Island, (28) 41 Points
2Nd Caroline Mcmullan, Portstewart, (20) 38 Points
Best Gross:una Bradley, Kilrea 22 Gross Points
3Rd Phil Mckenna, Castlerock, (19) 37 Points.
GMAC AND RORY PAIRED
Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell have been paired together for the opening two rounds of the US Open at Pinehurst this week.
The Ulster pair, winners of the US Open in 2010 and 2011, will be joined by 2012 champion, Webb Simpson.
McDowell, who skipped the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth to spend time with his pregnant wife, has made a number of familiarisation trips to Pinehurst in recent weeks.
“I’ve seen the golf course now two and a half times,” said GMAC.
“It plays long and it’s narrow. They’re forcing you to to kind of layup a lot which is good because it’s taken some of the big hitters out of play. They’re having to lay back with the mortals like myself.
“Short game is going to be a factor. But it’s a good test of golf. I think if it gets firmer it will play a little shorter but the greens will play very difficult.”
The 2011 Open Champion, Darren Clarke, will play alongside Louis Oosthuizen and Ernie Els.
Ireland’s Shane Lowry has been paired with Kevin Stadler and Brendon De Jonge.