Morale motors away to medal win

With the Blue Lake course at its hardest on Monthly Medal day players needed to engineer a round and no one was better than Bruce Morale.

He was the only player to play under their handicap, taking out the win with his round of 77-8-69.

Morale got off to the best possible start with an opening birdie, building on that with regulation golf until the seventh where an errant shot cost him a double bogey.

But he bounced straight back with a birdie to close out the front nine with 38.

A birdie on the difficult road-side 13th was quickly negated by tree trouble and a triple bogey, but Morale still manufactured a winning score.

A grade winner Tyson Ploenges made short work of the front nine adding a birdie to his opening run of pars over the first six holes.

A double bogey on the last robbed him of a chance to take the outright win.

Bob White (8) recovered from an opening double bogey to record a run of six straight pars to register an outward 38.

He would have held high expectations after a birdie on the 10th, but the trees claimed another victim with White also tripling the 14th, while more trouble was waiting on the next par three.

Third place belonged to Trevor Little who delivered a packaged round of 41 and 40 for a nett 75.

Every B grade player struggled in the difficult conditions with Graham Burke eventually taking the win after a three-way count-back.

Burke tried to play his way out of contention with difficulties on the third hole, but a terrific birdie on the fifth got him going.

A promising back nine with pars on the 12th and 15th almost came undone with more trouble on the 18th but he hung on for the victory.

The two unlucky players that had to settle for second and third were Jake Matthews (88-14-74) and David Johnston (93-19-74) respectively.

C grade winner Brenton Speck was the flag bearer for the higher handicap players with his round of 93-22-71 threatening to take the outright win.

Recovering from a lost ball penalty on the first Speck soon found his mojo with consecutive pars on the next holes

A count back was needed to decide the minor placings with Matt Davidson (25) outlasting David McKenzie (25) for second and third respectively.

Michael Dedonatis could not capitalise on a superb eagle on the 11th, cleaning out the eagles nest and adding another ball in the ball rundown.

Jorja Morale kept the winning feeling in the family with her win in the women’s Stroke competition on Saturday.

While not quite matching her fathers score Morale showed the promise with a strong opening nine followed by a superb par on the 10th.

At the other end of the age spectrum Geraldine Scott needed all her experience to keep her round on track after battling some troubles over the back nine.

The trees on the 15th were unforgiving, but she recovered well.

Rosemary Martland will be replaying the last hole in her mind over and over, wondering what could have been if she had just parred it instead of finding trouble.

Martland was out in 45 and with pars on the 12th, 14th and 15th she was setting herself up for the win until a double bogey on the last.

The tough scoring continued in Tuesday’s Stableford competition with only two players able to better their handicap.

Tyson Ploenges even needed some outside assistance to help him break handicap with 37 points, thanks to some invaluable tips from his caddie.

Off to a sluggish start Ploenges could have been excused for throwing his toys out of the buggy but instead put his head down and had just one more bogey from the fifth hole.

His two birdies helped him score on important holes as he just hung on for the win after a count back with Graham Burke.

Nic Clayton (7) had equal splits of 18 points a piece and eyed off the win, but a scrub on 15 forced him to settle for third.

Bruce Grubb watched on agonisingly as his tee shot on the 5th went precariously close to rolling into the hole on the 5th to finish just millimetres away but was compensated with his Pro Shot prize.

After the A grade Handicap Championship final was postponed due to injury all focus was on the B grade competition between good friends Alan Stewart and newly elected Club Captain, David Adkins.

Adkins faced the difficult task of having to give Stewart a 7 stroke difference and after taking the win on the very first hole that was the only time he led until the 37th hole.

After falling 4 wins behind at one stage Adkins had to dig deep, with Stewart following up his drives with some impressive fairway shots that belied his handicap.

After the first 18 holes Stewart had a 2 hole advantage which he quickly built on, winning the opening hole of the second round.

A run of 3 wins saw scores tied but Stewart took advantage of one of the holes he gets , rebounding with a win to once again go one


Heading into the last three holes 2 up it was near sudden death for Adkins, unable to afford any mistakes from then on in.

Taking the 16th and holding a slight advantage on the par 5 17th Stewart sunk a clutch putt to square the hole and head to the 36th hole one up and having a stroke advantage up his sleeve.

Adkins put the pressure on with his second finding the green in regulation and to eventually take the hole to end up square.

It was a pity that after 36 highly entertaining and impressive golf there could not be two winners as each player deserved the accolade of champion.

But, as they say, there can only be one winner and Adkins prevailed on the first play-off hole.

Stewart can definitely be proud of the game he played and just as much deserved the trophy.

The C grade championship, played over 27 holes, featured Trevor Gartside up against Ken Milsop.

Gartside was on his game early and quickly jumped to 5 up after the first 9 holes.

Milsop was up against it to turn it around quickly but only just managed to staunch the haemorrhaging, breaking for lunch 9 down after 18.

All Gartside needed to do from then on in was to halve a hole and did that straight away on the 19th to take the win 9/8.

It was good reward for the hard working volunteer and will go some way to easing the pain of not having the Tigers.

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