After a rain induced delay, the second half of the Winter League eventually got under way at Lurgan over 14 holes and for those with a ‘glass half full’ attitude this section of the league is like a countdown to Spring.
Indeed you don’t have to look too far for early signs of the season as the increasingly extended hours of play are clear for all to see.
Paul Mulgrew, a proud pupil of serial winner Martin Rea, climbed to the top of the leader board with 35 points, off 10, and his 19 homeward pts, capped with a birdie at the last, gave him that decisive edge.
With no fewer than five birdies on his card, Paul Lyness, 5, also had 35 points but had to settle for secondplace overall after a computer count back.
After opening and closing his round with birdies his 2 under total was the only sub-par round of the day.
The gross prize went to Shane Magee whose 28 gross points were the result of a level par round containing 2 birdies and two bogeys. While Paul was the only player to beat par, Shane was the only one to match it.
The low section went to John Hartnett with 34 points off 8, an early indication that he intends to maintain his position among the club’s most successful players for yet another year. A disappointing and uncharacteristic opening left him 4 over after 3 holes, but he covered 10 of the last 11 holes in 1 under par, an NR at 15 looking distinctly out of place.
The section’s runners-up prize went to Roy Hanna Jnr with 32 points, off 5, after a few stunning examples of his noted escapology skills rescued him.
The winter has certainly been kind to Brian Doley and he added to his of recent prizes by taking the middle section with 35 points off 11 after a round of 4 over par.
Second in the section went to Winston Hutchison with 34 points off 12, an NR at 5 leaving him with just too much to do.
After his fourth competition of the year Walter Simpson, 16, can boast of two outright victories and now a high section prize after his 34 points gave him this week’s award. If this ratio keeps up for the next few months he is about to enjoy a year to remember. Runner-up was Barry Mulholland, 14, who also had 34 points but missed out on the count back.
After taking the overall runner-up prize last week, it looks like the next few weeks will witness a titanic struggle for supremacy between these two bang-in-form seasoned golfers.