McGinley tops the field on President’s Day

presidents_day_04_smallMR Michael G Kennedy’s President’s Day at Strabane Golf Club attracted an entry in excess of 200, a fitting tribute to a president who has worked tirelessly throughout the year. With his enthusiasm for local history, the president’s efforts have been most conspicuous in highlighting the glorious hundred years of the club’s existence.

Saturday’s event produced a popular winner in Liam McGinley who posted his best score for some time in topping the leaderboard with a fine 41 points. Runner-up Ben Corry has been in tremendous form over the past months. On Saturday the accomplished four-handicapper posted a level par round of 40 points, with birdies at three of the five par threes.

presidents_day_03_smallThird-placed Terence McDermott matched Corry’s score but was edged out on the break of a tie. Garvan Godfrey and Mervyn Moore each carded 39 points to take the category one and two awards respectively, while category three went to Gerard Doherty with 37 points.

Enda Kennedy’s putter let him down badly but he still managed a one-over-par 70 to take the gross award. Best visitor was City of Derry’s John McCormack who amassed a marvellous 41 points off a 19 handicap. Thursday’s Signal Signs (Omagh) open stableford went to Ballybofey and Stranorlar’s Gavin Reilly who compiled a magnificent one-over-par round of 44 points to gain a two point cushion over gallant runner-up Barney Vaughan. John Doherty was a point further back in third place, with Martin McDermott’s 38 points being the best gross return of the day. Mark Cocks, from North West GC, posted a fine 39 points to take the visitors’ prize. Unlike the rest of the week, nobody managed to break the 40 point barrier in last week’s Monday Open. Winner Paul McGill came close, his 39 points giving him a one point victory over improving Stephen Quinn. Noel O’Kane carded 37 points to take third place, while the gross award went to Conal Cooke with 34 points.

presidents_day_01_smallThe violent thunderstorms that raged for much of last Tuesday put paid to the ladies’ scheduled event. However, they did manage to team up with their male counterparts for Wednesday’s ‘Oyster’s Sausage Sizzle’ mixed foursomes. From the 34 pairings that participated, Mary and Hugh Casey came out on top, their 33 point tally getting up by a point from lady president, Eleanor McMorran and Mark Sharkey. Norma Brogan and Paul McGill finished third with 29 points. Congratulations to Rachel Devenney and Frankie Connolly on being adjudged best dress female and male as an adjunct to the event.

Sunday’s Marie Curie charity team event was contested by 26 teams-of-four. It produced the following result: 1, Fred McGavigan, Adrian Nelson, Patrick McCrossan, Cathal Griffin, 93 points; 2, Paddy O’Kane, Chris McDermott, Senan Roarty, Frankie Connolly, 91; 3, Denis Porter, Kevin Keegan, Joe Doherty, George Turner, 90; 4, Declan Lynch, Martin Rouse, Eamon McCay, Brian O’Kane, 89; 5, Connor Sharkey, Marc Brolly, Conal Cooke, Mark Sharkey, 88. Strabane teams fared well in inter-club events this week. The O’Haire Cup team had a resounding 15-1 victory at home in the first leg of their match against Newtownstewart GC, while the Senior Donegal League side beat Ballybofey 5-2 in the home leg of their tie.

With the holiday season upon us, entertainment at the club is at a bit of a lull. Patrons should note, however, that Gary Gamble will be on stage on August 15, an appearance that is sure to prove popular.

Holes-in-one and a close finish at Strabane

SATURDAY’S Ulster Bank Open at Strabane Golf Club provided one of the season’s closest finishes with only two shots separating the top eight players. Plunkett Langan (12) and Maurice Doherty both fired excellent scores of 63 nett to top the leaderboard, with the former adjudged the winner on the break of a tie.

Pat McGuigan carded a nett 64 to take third place, while Ben Corry’s three-over-par 72 was the best gross score of the day. Nicky Patton was best in category one with a nett 65. Billy Doherty had a second successive par-busting round to take category two with a nett 64, while Raymond McDermott’s 65 nett assured him of the category three award.

Congratulations to Ben Corry and Cahir Doherty on recording holes-in-one during Saturday’s play. Corry aced the second hole, while Doherty’s came at the eighth.

Thursday’s Mitchell Meats Open was just as tight with the first three players home all producing marvellous rounds of 42 points. Billy Doherty had the best of the back nines and was declared the winner ahead of Frankie Devine and Jim Potts. Paddy Kennedy picked up the gross prize with a fine one-over par 70.

In difficult conditions, it was no surprise that scores in last week’s Monday Open were harder to come by. Cathal Griffin compiled a steady 37 points to take the top prize, with George McCay and Ben Corry finishing second and third respectively, both with cards of 36 points. Brian McCarthaigh, playing out of Bundoran GC took the visitor’s award, with Aidan Boyle having the best gross return of the day, 32 points.

Tuesday’s Member’s Cup for ladies went to Catherine Neeson, her nett 67 easily being the best return of the day. Mandy Coyne was best in the 0-24 category with a nett 76, while Mary McGuigan’s nett 70 gained her the 25-36 category award.

Heavy rain

Heavy rain on Wednesday threatened to wash out the scheduled mixed pairs event, but thankfully the elements relented long enough for the competition to be completed. Oliver McNally and Teresa Logue posted 39 points to fill the top spot, a couple of points ahead of second-placed Patsy Rouse and Annette Patton. Denis Porter and Noreen McNally were third with 34 points.

The second mixed pairs event of the week was Sunday’s President’s Mixed Foursomes, a prelude to Michael G Kennedy’s President’s Day on Saturday coming. Top performers on Sunday were Angela Houston and Charlie Patton who posted a winning 63 nett. Annie O’Hagan and Nigel Houston carded a 65.5 nett to take second place with Philomena Cooke and Foncie McNally in third place with a nett 69. The best gross score of the day was the round of 82 by Bernie O’Kane and Freddie Patterson.

It was a week of mixed fortunes in representative golf. The Barton Shield team bowed out of the competition after suffering defeat at the hands of Dungannon in Murvagh.

The Irish Mixed Foursomes squad, though, fared much better as they put up a battling performance to see off the challenge of Dunmurry. The Strabane outfit got off to a flier, notching up victories in the first two matches completed. Things turned decidedly sour after that as they lost the next two matches and appeared to be heading for defeat in the fifth and final rubber.

At one stage Martin Roarty and Mary McCrory were four holes down and seemingly on their knees. However, they staged a remarkable comeback reeling off hole after hole until they eventually clinched the tie with an unlikely two and one victory, to set up a semi-final encounter with Foyle GC. The match has been pencilled in for City of Derry, though a date has yet to be arranged.

Upcoming fixtures: Saturday, Mr Michael G Kennedy’s President’s Day; Sunday, Marie Curie Cancer Care Open.

There will be entertainment in the clubhouse on Saturday night as part of the President’s Day celebrations.

Bernie clear winner as ladies turn out in force for Lady Captain’s Day

lady_captains_03_smallSATURDAY at Strabane Golf Club was Mrs Imelda Doherty’s Lady Captain’s Day when, not surprisingly, the ladies turned out in force to pay tribute to a most popular and industrious lady captain who has worked tirelessly throughout this centenary year to raise the profile, not just of the ladies’ section, but of the club as a whole.

The Lady Captain’s Prize was won by Bernie O’Kane who produced by far the best round of the day, her nett 68 off a handicap of 20 giving her a four shot advantage over the field.

lady_captains_02_smallRunner-up was Shauna Patton (12) with a 72 nett, one better than third-placed Mandy Coyne. Rachel Devenney took fourth prize with a 75 nett, while the gross award went to Lorna Armstrong who carded a score of 89.

Dympna Doherty’s nett 76 gained her the 0-18 category prize, Mary Gallagher topped the 19-28 category with 75 nett, while the 29-36 category was won by Noreen McNally with 76 nett.

lady_captains_01_smallOther winners on the day were: first nine, Patricia Kelly; second nine, Lorna Duffy; nearest pin (at second hole), Philomena Cooke; longest drive (at hole 18), Adeline Shiels; putting, Aileen Shortt; non-qualifiers prize, Kathleen Hoynes; committee, Ann Sharkey; granny prize, Mary Casey; senior, Loretta Coyne; category one, Lisa Patton; category two, Eilish McCay; guest, Frankie Corr; visitor, Sylvia Hamilton-Allen; men (10 holes); 1, Declan Lynch (22 points); 2, Terry Doherty (20 points).

Congratulations to young Abbey Maxwell on her hole-in-one at the sixth hole (junior tee), while competing in the junior section of the Lady Captain’s Prize.

The ladies were also in competition for the Gallagher Cup this week, the winner being Shauna Patton with an excellent 66 nett. Catherine Neeson took the 0-24 category prize with a nett 70, with Mary McCrory going a shot better to take the 25-36 category award.

It was a significant week for the junior golfers, as they held their first ever Junior Captain’s Day on Friday. In the boys’ section (Damian Roarty, captain), Michael Etherson posted a great 44 points to take the Captain’s Prize.

The section winners were: A, 1, Eoin O’Neill, 42 points; 2, Lee Hannigan, 41 points; B, 1, Ciaran Roarty, 40 points; 2, Shay Callaghan, 36 points.

Lauren Patton’s Junior Captain’s Prize for girls produced the following result: Section A, 1, Ellen McCullagh; 2, Lisa Patton; Section B, 1, Abbey Maxwell; 2, Orlagh Neeson.


In men’s golf, the club’s Open Week got off to a stuttering start on Sunday when a violent afternoon thunderstorm caused the abandonment of play. It should be noted that the Frylite Open Team event has been re-scheduled for this coming Sunday, July 12.

The Sion Swifts Open team event produced the result: 1, Freddie Patterson, Denis Porter, Foncie McNally, Brian Forester, 94 points; 2, Peter Doherty, Barry Patterson, Roy Patterson, Barney Vaughan, 94 points; 3, Mark Neely, Alwyn Donnell, San McCrossan, Paul McGarrigle, 93 points; Ladies: Angela Houston, Laura McCay, Lorna Duffy, Donna Doherty; Juniors: 1, Jordan Arthur, 46 points; 2, Plunkett Langan, 41 points.

Vincent Bradley (16) won last week’s Monday Open with a fine round of 42 points. Paul McLaughlin was just a point adrift in second place, while Aidan Coyle took third place, also with 41 points.

The gross prize went to Paul McGill with 34 points and Portnoo’s Kevin Patton won the visitors’ prize, also with 34 points.

Oliver Cresswell posted a huge tally of 46 points to comfortably take Thursday’s India House Open. Kieran Martin’s 42 points gained him second place, a point ahead of third-placed Mervyn Reid. Enda Kennedy took the gross prize with a one-under par return of 68.

The Red Pepper Restaurant (Castlederg) sponsored mixed pairs event on Wednesday produced the following result: 1, Angela Houston and Nigel Houston, 43 points; 2, Karl Barr and Mary Duffy, 42 points; 3, Oliver McNally and Norma Brogan, 40 points.

In representative golf, the Roberts Cup team progressed at the expense of Omagh, while the Donegal Senior Championship team had a resounding victory over Murvagh, winning the tie 9-5 on aggregate.

The Fred Daly Plate squad had a good first leg result in their tie against Omagh, winning the away match by 4.5-2.5.

In the Donegal Youth League, Strabane beat Letterkenny 2.5 – 0.5 to progress. They will meet either Murvagh or Portsalon in the next round.