The scoring on Saturday’s Monthly Medal stroke competition at the BLGC was as dreary as the weather, with no player able to break into the 60’s.
However, a three way tie at the top caught everyone’s attention with Richard Neale, Rob Ellis and Jacob Reed all returning a nett 70. It was Neale who managed the tricky conditions the best, parring the 13th, 14th and 15th for a closing 47.
The 26 handicapper was four under over his last six holes, while Ellis (11) was unlucky. Turning with 40 on the front nine and five consecutive pars through the middle part of the inward nine saw him eyeing off an overall win, but a double bogey on the last relegated him back into a tie.
Reed (36) was also tracking well and the thought of the grand prize must have got into his head over the closing three holes, the best he could manage through them was a double bogey or worse.
Ellis had to settle for the A grade win, with another count back required to decide the minor placings. Tim Smith and Shane Stevens, both off 6 handicap, and Colin Ferguson (5) all tied on nett 71 with the former getting the nod for second.
All three players had two birdies each. Another count back was needed in B Grade to separate Tony Brooks (14) and John Brown (16) after both returned a nett 73. Both players opened with 42’s but Brown’s double bogey on the last cost him dearly to just miss out on the grade win.
There was a clear winner in C Grade with Jacob Reed taking the prize after his round of 106-36-70. Making the most of his handicap he almost took out the medal, but a disastrous blow out on the par five 17th hole ruined his overall hopes.
Three strokes further back was Cory Davis with 106-33-70 in second, while Tony Morandin survived a count back to claim third after finishing with a nett 74. After writing last week about the trials and tribulations Jorja Morale overcame in winning her first tournament she obviously enjoyed the experience so much she did it again this week.
Not only did she win, but she obliterated the course with her round of 103-45-58 is nothing but spectacular. Morale started well and parred one of the most difficult holes on the course (four) and overcame a couple of hiccups closing out the front nine.
Not to be undeterred she went one shot better over the inward nine with another par on the 15th to record a sub 60 round, albeit on handicap. She finished a whopping 15 strokes ahead of her nearest rival, Cherryl Hill, who finished with 95-22-73.