WEEK five of Lurgan’s Winter League passed off without any major disruptions last Saturday.
The final day was punctuated by a few unpleasant showers. These intrepid golfers hardly noticed and once again produced some dramatic scores over the regulation fourteen holes. Off the 144 entries around 49 per cent managed under par figures.
The overall winner of the week was Derek Johnston. This 20 handicapper had an unique treble as he had earlier in the week won the seniors and midweek sweep. This time around he swept to victory with a total of 36 points. His day began with a par, par, double bogey. In the middle of the round he found a niche of form to record a run of four pars starting on the eighth. He closed his day with a par and a net par to secure the treble.
In the Low section sixteen golfers compiled returns of twenty nine points or better.
The main prize went to Francie Tallon. This two handicapper won with 33 points. A bogey at the fifth was his only blip. The rest of his round comprised four birdies and nine pars. Holes nine, twelve, fifteen and eighteen were the birdie holes.
In second place was three handicapper Paul McCabrey. Paul played his card on the Wednesday and his better back nine put him second. A tally of 32 points earned William McMillan the third net prize. The eight handicapper had a modest start with two pars and three bogeys on the first five holes. He played excellently on the following nine holes. Besides birdies at holes twelve, eighteen and a bogey on the seventeenth it was pars all the way home.
Young Peter Cummins won the weekly gross award. This five handicapper was successful with 29 points. He had puzzling opening seven with bogeys on holes one, two, five and nine. He turned matters around on the other holes. Birdies at holes ten, fourteen and eighteen provided the lifeline. Pars were pencilled in on the other holes to nudge him ahead in the category.
The other useful scoring came from the following: 31: Kevin McKavanagh; 30: Andrew Gates, Ian Cousins, Jason McCann, Conal Coleman, John Hartnett, Andrew Cummins, Nathan McCann, Conal Patterson; 29: Shane Magee, Mal McConville, Jim McKee.
In a very competitive Middle section a vibrant thirty golfers pencilled in under par returns over the week. Gavin Smyth had the top weekly overall score of 38 points but a previous success counted against him. Thus this fourteen handicapper had to settle for top spot in the section with 36 points. Gavin thrived on the front side with six pars and a birdie on the fifth. A trio of bogeys at holes eleven, twelve and fourteen were his only wayward holes. A birdie on the seventeenth and pars on the rest of the holes helped him to this ultra respectable score. An effort of 35 points secured Terry Eagers second place in the division. This sixteen handicapper made pars on holes two and six but a couple of double bogeys on the front side gave him food for thought.
A run of par, par birdie was the tonic start to the inward seven. His surge of birdie, par, birdie on the final three holes proved the catalyst. Third net went to Brian Clarke with a similar haul of 35 points. The 10 handicapper dropped strokes at holes two, six and ten. He countered with birdies on holes twelve and eighteen. Pars were his lot on the rest of the holes. The other rewarding scores were attained by the following: 35: Tony McCallion; 34: Henry McAreavey; 33: Martin McNeice, Paddy Meehan; 32: Peter Gordon, Greg McDonald; 31: Aidan Thornbury, John Richardson, Daire Hogan, Noel Stewart, Eamon McCarron, Lawrence Mitchell, John Healy, Wilson Collins, Bryan Turkington, Martin Corey.
30: Ian Hamilton, Nevan Lavery, Ian Harrison, Coner McConville, Neale McKinstry, Willy Russell; 29: Stevie Allen, Artie McGlone, Paul McKernan, Gerard Henderson, Dwaine Hanna, Denis McInerney.
Finally in the High section a competent 24 golfers managed under par returns. Leading the way was Francie McKenna with a well fashioned effort of 34 points. Francie was quick into his stride with three early pars. A couple of double
bogeys on the front side did not deter him. A brace of pars at holes ten and eleven showed promise. He rounded off his successful day with pars at holes fifteen and seventeen. Barry Creaney nipped in to nab the runners-up place with 33 points. The 17 handicapper was well to the fore through seven holes with pars at holes one, five and seven. He played solidly on the homeward seven with vital pars at holes eleven, twelve, fifteen and seventeen. A birdie on the eighteenth was the deciding factor.
Twenty one handicapper Brian Matthews grabbed the final net prize with his tally of 33 points. He struggled slightly on the front side with a par at the fifth being his stand out score. He played exceptionally well on the back seven with five pars on his card. A brace of pars on holes eleven and twelve set the ball rolling. He concluded his round with three pars to capture third place. The other challenging scores came from the following:
33: Neale Carson, Chris Godfrey; 32: Conor McConville; 31: Martin McCooe, Peadar Murray, Conor McEvoy, John McComb, Conal McAshea, Maurice Turnbull, Rory Brady; 30: Paul Magee, Jim Hanratty Jnr, John Menary; 29: Chris Stevenson, Gerard Marner, Eugene McAtamney, Bill Leslie, Terence; McCrory, Graham McNeill, Walter Simpson.