The men’s Ryder Cup team at Niagara-on-the-Lake Golf Club seems to finally have found a way to defeat the women’s Solheim squad in their annual head-to-head competition.
Dress in your most colourful, mismatched attire and do your best to throw the women off their game. Or at least they think that might explain their comeback win after being clobbered a year ago.
Perhaps the fashion strategy worked last Friday as the men, captained by veteran Harry Huizer, eked out the narrowest possible win, 22 points to 20 after 18 holes of hard-fought matches.
Fourteen women, led by captain Martha Cruikshank, played the 14 men in seven matches with 42 points up for grabs. Each match had six 6 points available.
The men held a slim two-point 8-6 lead after the first nine, which featured an alternate shot format with teams of two taking turns.
On the back nine, the men clung to their lead, playing a better ball format, in which the score of the partner with lowest total on each hole is counted.
Playing on a beautifully sunny day with no humidity, but gale-force winds off Lake Ontario, threatened to wreak havoc with many of the hard-hitting men’s scores, but as Huizer noted, they found a way to keep it together.
However, the outcome was in doubt until the final foursome of Brodie Townley & Darryl Fry and Margot Richardson & May Chang completed their round. Townley and Richardson managed to get just enough points to push their team over the top.
It was a welcome comeback for the gents after teams of 16 played last year played and the women’s side prevailed in a one-sided rout, winning 35-13 in points.
The men’s team seems to have a habit of squeezing out a narrow victory every second year, overcoming a thumping by the women in the previous year. In 2019, the team of a dozen gents prevailed 20-16, one year after they were thrashed by a score that everyone wants to forget. It was 41-1. Probably some kind of record.
MEN’S LEAGUES: Greg Keldson led all players, accumulating 26 points under the Stableford modified scoring system during men’s league play at the NOTL Golf Club last Thursday.
Gerry Shelly was alone in second place with 23 while eight players tied for third with 21 points: Randy Busbridge, Neville DaSilva, Martin Vagners, Paul Jacot, John Kozik, Ray Rempel, John Wiens and Norm Kerr.
Men’s club champ James Girgjanis-Meusel won low gross with a 2-under 34 score. Big money winners of $65 each in the net skins game were Tim Taylor (#1), Paul Jacot (#3) and Michael Berlis (#8). Gross skin winners of $25 apiece for birdies were Larry Mantle (#1), Sean Simpson, (#4), Grigjanis-Meusel (#5), John Sobil (#6) and Stephen Warboys (#8).
Closest to the pin sharpshooters were Brock Samson (#4) and Earl Shore (#9).
WOMEN’S RESULTS: The 9 hole women’s league played a game of golf poker last week and Chris Walker won with six of a kind. Cathy Saytar had six of a kind too, but Walker had a better overall score. Helen McCallum was third with a straight of 4 through 9.
On Tuesday, Lisa Allen was low gross winner with a 91 in the 18 hole women’s league. Runners-up were Margot Richardson and Carroll Baker with 92.
Best low net scores were: 69 (-3) – Sharron Marlow (69), Richardson (72), Baker and Allen (73). Allen also had a birdie on #6.