The effects of heavy rain and thunderstorms can last long after the umbrellas are put away.
Sunday’s torrential downpours in Saratoga County turned Ballston Spa Country Club into a much
longer layout for the standout field in the opening round of the annual Capital District Women’s Open Monday.
The fairways were soft, allowing little roll on both tee shots and approach shots. Many balls bounced behind their pitch marks instead of forward. Although the greens were extremely receptive, they were also slower than usual, confusing even many of the top players in the area.
The conditions led to higher scores than normal, but the good news is that there are also more teams in contention for each flight championship.
Two-time defending champions Pat Mayne of Pinehaven Country Club and Karen Feldman of Olde Kinderhook tied with Mary Ellen Burt and Julie Paolino with two-over-par 76s in the championship flight.
Joyce Martin, who owns numerous Northeastern Women’s Golf Association and Gazette Women’s Amateur titles, teamed with Karen Krug for a 77, while former CD Women’s Open champs Sue Kahler and Suzie Mansfield of the host club were just a shot back. There are seven teams within three shots of the lead in the championship flight.
The Pinehaven Country Club duo of Anne Van Buren and Mary Ellen Milos dominated the first flight with a 77 and a four-shot lead over Ann Twyman with Roxanne Andrews and Carol Aiello with Anne Poulin.
In the second flight, Roxanne Greenwood and Tina Koehler shot an 83, and own a five-shot lead over their nearest competitors, while the teams of Audrey VanAlstine with Maxine Giacobbe and Regina
DuBois with Susan Walsh are tied for first in the third flight with a 92.
Very few teams were happy with their scores.
“We didn’t play very well today,” said Mayne. “We didn’t hit our approach shots close enough, and that’s disappointing.”
Still, Mayne and Feldman registered 15 pars to go along with one birdie, a 30-foot bomb by Mayne on the second hole; one bogey, when both players three-putted the sixth hole; and one double-bogey.
“A tree got in the way of our shot on the 13th hole, and then I three-putted on top of that,” said Mayne with a smile.
But Feldman, a former pro tennis player, was more optimistic.
“We had plenty of birdie tries, but we kept just missing the hole or coming up just short,” she said. “The greens were a little slow because of the rain, and it also played a lot longer, but that is to be expected.”
Mayne, a past NEWGA champion, only saw a few scores on the leaderboard when she first came in, but she assumed her team’s score wouldn’t be too far behind.
“I figure if we played this poorly and still shot a 76, we should be in a lot better shape tomorrow,” she said.
Burt, the head women’s basketball coach at Union College, agreed that the longer hitters had a huge advantage, with the course playing so much longer than usual.
“Hitting some long drives today really helped us, because there wasn’t much roll. You really had to throw it up in the air today,” she said.
“We just kind of just played for pars. We had a couple of shots for birdie, and we sank a couple. We’re happy just to be in the hunt,” she said.
Burt and Paolino sank back-to-back birdies on the fifth and sixth holes, but two of their bogeys were on par-5s.
Deb Patten with Deb Bloom, Cheryl Potter with Linda Kolnick, and Heather Morrison with Jen DiIorio posted 79s in the championship flight.
Leslie Arakelian of Pinehaven Country Club, who owns several NEWGA Championship trophies, and Elaine Sauers, who, with fellow Wolferts Roost Country Club member Mary Jo Kelly, has more partner championships than anyone in the area, struggled with an 81, despite shooting even-par on the front.
Chan Lee with Pat Healey and Morrison with DiIorio share low net in the championship flight with 65S. Van Buren and Milos have a 64 net in the first flight, where Ann Twyman and Roxanne Andrews posted a 66.
The final round begins this morning with a 9 a.m. shotgun start.
Championship flight: Gross — Karen Feldman-Pat Mayne 76, Mary Ellen Burt-
Julie Paolino 76, Joyce Martin-Karen Krug 77, Sue Kahler-Suzie Mansfield 78, Cheryl Potter-Linda Kolnick 79, Deb Patten-Deb Bloom 79, Heather Morrison-Jen DiIorio 79, Leslie Arakelian-Elaine Sauers 81, Kate Oppedisano-Diana Ramos 81, Chan Lee-Pat Healey 82, Jill Kane-Patty Mort 83, Ilene Gaffney-Jan Vincent 83. Net — Lee-Healey 65, Morrison-DiIorio 65.
First flight: Gross — Anne Van Buren-Mary Ellen Milos 77, Ann Twyman-Roxane Andrews 81, Carol Aiello-AnnePoulin 81, Joan Taylor-Sue Delanoy 82, Sue Chambers-Darcie Trapasso 87, Bonnie Stewart-Mary Harris 87, Mimi Jakob-Max Tucker 90, Beth Todd-Carol Giachetta 90, Flo Liberatore-Joanne Whalen 91, Carol Fazio-Betty DuBois 95. Net — VanBuren-Milos 64.
Second flight: Gross — Roxanne Greenwood-Tina Koehler 83, Sandra Weckter-
Gloria Duggan 88, Peg Squazzo-Betty Cushing 88, Sharon Naftzger-Pat Stack 89, Donna Heskett-Mary Ellen Trumbull 89, Jeannine Goodale-Ann Hartranft 90, Fran Wayand-Tina Wettlaufer 92, Priscilla Cunningham-Jane Rackliffe 92, Judy Mysliborski-Paula Maniscalco 94, Mary Assey-Beth Sciurba 94, Diane Meckler-Selena Balick 97, Kathe Sabatello-Gail Wayand 97. Net — Greenwood-Koehler 63.
Third flight: Gross — Audrey VanAlstine-Maxine Giacobbe 92, Regina DuBois-Susan Walsh 92, Diana O’Hare-Connie Fennessey 95, Carol Richards-Robin Ferris 95, Gail Chas-Marjory Fraser 95, Amy Upjohn-
Louise Starzenski 97, Joyce Blau-Jerilyn Carr 97, Betty Chiffolo-Joey Laiacona 98, Debra Cottrell-Sharon Nevins 99, Gail Comanzo-Lois Koper 100, Edwina Hubbell-Barbara Hirnyk 105, Dori Shields-Carlys Shokshober 110. Net — VanAlstine-Giacobbe 69, DuBois-Walsh 69.
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