MATT’S FORM CONTINUES AT BUSHFOOT
Recent prizewinner Matt Colgan’s good form stayed with him in the third week of the MoreSports.com League at Bushfoot Golf Club.
He scored 38 points from his handicap of sixteen to win Section One. This win did not look likely as Matt failed to score on the fourth hole and had a trio of double bogies to his name after that.
Just 15 points were on his card as he turned into the back nine. A bogey five on ten was fine but his birdie two on eleven was a real boost to the points and from there on he lost just four shots to par to be able to add in 23 to his tally and end up with a winning 38.
This was three in front of Harold Love on 35 from his mark of ten. He had failed to register a hit on the fifth but picked a shot up on the par five sixth to help him get to 17 for the opening nine. A steady five over par back nine gave him 18 points for his total of 35.
In Section Two it was Nigel Dobbin getting to the top with his return of 37 points from his eighteen handicap. As with Matt Colgan he had a modest front nine score of 15 points, not scoring on five and eight, but came to life on the second lap where he dropped just five shots and gained 22 points to get to the top of his section.
Seventeen handicap Des Hamiltin was a point behind on 36. Apart from a blank on thirteen Des had two steady nines of 18 points each for his 36 card.
PEARSE IS TABLE TOPPER
Pearse Donnelly, a thirteen handicapper, pulled 40 points from his round on the Strand Course at Portstewart on Saturday to win the Sweep by one point.
His opening hole double bogey six did not bode well but Pearse dropped just four shots to par from there to get through nine holes with 19 points on board. Better was to follow, after a bogey five on ten, as he played the next six in one under par courtesy of a birdie four on the long fourteenth.
Seventeen took two shots from Pearse but in the prevailing conditions that was acceptable and a closing bogey on eighteen gave him 21 for the inward nine and 40 for the round.
One back came Greg McPeake on 39. Greg plays off seventeen and, in spite of blanking five and eight, carded a handicap matching 18 points for the opening nine. With some very consistent play coming back Greg eliminated the no scores and picked up four three pointers as well. A double bogey on seventeen gave him just one point but 21 back put him in runners up spot by himself as the nearest rivals scored 38s.
Stephen Garrett seems to have a firm grip on the Best Gross section these days and consolidated this with a round of six over par 78 to claim it again. The par three sixth cost him a six but the following par five gave up a birdie four to help him to the turn in three over par 39.
A couple of bogeys early in the back nine were repaired by his double birdie treatment of the par fives to get back to level par for nine but two shots slipped away on sixteen and seventeen took another from him to see a matching 39 go on the card for his six over 78.
A trio of one pointers hampered Bobby Millar’s progress over the opening nine to 17 points but he came back well after the turn with a birdie three on sixteen giving him four points to help him on his way to 21 back and 38 overall to take the Section A prize. In Section B it was Paddy O’Connell on top with another 38 points from his mark of seventeen. He played steadily for two nines of 19 each.
Stuart Clanachan hit 38 points this week to go with last week’s 36 to take the prize for the best aggregate for the two rounds.
SENIORS OPEN AT BUSHFOOT
David McElveen made the short journey from Gracehill GC to Bushfoot GC recently and carried off the top prize in the Open Seniors event there.
The fifteen handicapper scored 39 points to finish one clear of the rest. He opened his account with a double bogey but this was forgotten when his putt on the third went in for a birdie three.
David dropped just two shots apart from the first and had 22 to his name after nine. A few more bogies crept onto the card on the back nine but a saving birdie four on the long fifteenth got him to 17 for the back and 39 overall and this proved crucial in pushing Portstewart’s Robert Smith and Bushfoot’s Gilbert Bowman into second and third respectively.
Both scored 38 but Robert won out in the countback with a great haul of 22 from the back nine. Gilbert picked up a birdie three on the third but failed to register a hit on two and ten.
RATHMORE TURKEY FOR JONNY
Thirty-seven points from three handicapper Jonathan Martin jnr was enough to take top spot in the turkey list this week at Rathmore GC.
After a couple of pars Jonny hit a two on the short third and followed this with a birdie four on the long fourth to get to two under par. His unfortunate double bogey six on the seventh undid that work however and a brace of bogeys added in meant 18 points at the halfway stage for Jonny.
The back nine is easily described, nine straight pars, one handicap shot, 19 points for a total of 37 and a one point win over the two 38 points scorers.
After countback it was David McLaughlin who took second with one of the 36s. Double bogies early and late in the opening nine didn’t stop the fifteen handicapper getting 18 points registered.
He stopped the doubles on the inward nine but couldn’t do better than another 18 points for his 36. Gary Cardwell birdied the par four second but again a pair of double bogies pulled him back to 18 points out. He was going well on the back nine until fifteen gave him no return at all and restricted him to another 18 for his 36 but the tie break went against him so third it was.
Ben Best carded a round of 73, three over par, to get the Best Gross award. An uncommon double bogey seven on the par five fourth was partially alleviated by Ben’s birdie two on six but a bogey five on the seventh pegged him back to two over par 37 for the opening nine.
Eleven gave up another two and his birdie four on the long thirteenth got Ben heading towards level par again but a few shots slipped away from him on the home stretch. A final birdie, three on sixteen, saw Ben get back in one over par 36 for his tally of three over par 73.
RICHARD IS MEDAL WINNER
A net 73 from four handicapper Richard McClements secured him a win in the Monthly Medal at Royal Portrush on Saturday.
An opening bogey five maybe wasn’t the start he wanted but Richard got into his stride after it and rattled off five pars before dropping another shot on the par four seventh. That was the last lost shot of the nine and turned for home with 38 shots played, two over par.
In the difficult conditions birdies were hard to find but Richard fought on well to get a trio of pars but bogeys slipped in on the par four thirteenth and the short fourteenth. The last dropped shot was on the sixteenth but two good pars to end the round saw Richard finish the nine in three over par 39 for an 18 hole gross of 77 which netted down to the winning 73.
Geoff Rodgers took the Silver position after getting round in net 76. The eight handicapper caught a double bogey six on the fourth hole which took the shine off an otherwise steady front nine and took him on to a six over par 42 for it.
The curse of the double bogey came back on sixteen with another six and that gave Geoff another gross 42 for a round of 84. This nets down to 76 for the Silver Medal. The man of Bronze was Richard McDermott with a tally of 75. Playing off twelve Richard started well before he too suffered from a double bogey on the seventh.
Even so he played to his handicap for the first nine recording 42 shots which would net to level par 36. Richard’s back nine was progressing nicely before the short fourteenth and the par four sixteenth added two double bogeys to his card and that meant an 18 hole gross of 87 and a net 75.
A round of 76 won the Best Gross for J Stevenson jnr. He exchanged a bogey for a birdie for the opening two holes and went one under par after another birdie three on the fifth. A couple of shots drifted away to see him turn for home with 37 played, one over par.
The back nine seems to have been playing harder than the front and this showed With Junior as he lost four shots to par but picked one up with a good birdy three at fifteen. That helped him to get back in three over par 39 for a round of 76.
Turkey Time at Gracehill
Jim Gillan playing off 10 got the Christmas dinner sorted out at the first time of asking with a magnificent 40 points in the first Turkey and Ham competition of the year, to win division 1.
After a solid front nine, Jim made the turn four over par, for 19 points. However, his back nine proved instrumental in his victory, as he played it in only two over par, the highlight of which was a birdie at the 13th. Obviously his new orange Puma shoes have instilled confidence into his golf game.
Beaten on countback into second place was Jimmy McClenaghan.However, don’t feel too sorry for Jimmy he was the happiest man at Gracehill on Saturday after a glorious hole in 1 at the seventh!