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Shay’s Short Game: Wire to wire victory for Charlie Denvir

Olivia Mahaffey helps Arizona State to third place, Sorenstam invitation for Emily Nash

Elm Park’s Charlie Denvir, winner of the Connacht Under-18 Boys Amateur Open Championship at Galway Bay Resort. Photograph: Pat Cashman

Denvir outclasses the field

Charlie Denvir from Elm Park outclassed the field last week when retuning a record Connacht Boys Open winning score of 11-under-par to win the 2017 Connacht golf Under-18 Boys Amateur Open Championship at the Galway Bay Resort by eight strokes from Max Kennedy (The Royal Dublin) and Aaron Marshall (Lisburn).

Denvir carded rounds of 67, 70 and 68 for 205 with Marshall shooting 73, 71 and 69 for 213, and Kennedy 70, 71 and 72 also for 213.

Robert Moran from the Castle was fourth on 215 after rounds of 75, 69 and 71 for 215 with Luke O’Neill from Connemara also on 215 after rounds of 71, 70 and 74.

Mahaffey helps Arizona State to third place

Southern California University beat top seeded Stanford University 3-2 in the final of the East Lake Cup women’s match-play tournament at East Lake Golf Club, Atlanta, Georgia. Irish international Olivia Mehaffey helped Arizona State University win the third-place play-off 3-2 against Northwestern.

Mehaffey beat Stephanie Lau 3 and 2 after going two up for the first time in the match at the 14th, quickly followed by winning the 15th to be three up.

In the semi-final Mehaffey beat Madeline Chou (Stanford) by 8 and 7 after being seven up at the turn but Linnea Strom was Arizona State University’s only other winner - she beat Andrea Lee by one hole - as Stanford won 3-2.

Sorenstam invitation for Emily Nash

Emily Nash may not have a first-place trophy or a trip to the Massachusetts state tournament, but this certainly isn’t a bad consolation prize.

Nash, a high school junior who made national news last week after it was ruled that she couldn’t be named individual champion of the Central Mass. Division 3 boys’ golf tournament despite recording the low score because of her gender, tweeted that she received a phone call from Annika Sorenstam, who extended a special exemption to her Annika Invitational AJGA junior golf event.

Nash’s story struck a chord with several prominent pros last week who took to social media to express their outrage, including Sorenstam, who has 72 LPGA wins and 10 major titles to her name.

And now Sorenstam will get to watch Nash up close at her junior event in February at Reunion Resort in central Florida.

Brady in form at Portmarnock Links

Clontarf’s Eamonn Brady shot a five-under-par 66 to win the nett as Ardee’s Brian Kerley claimed the gross with a super 68 in the TaylorMade Tuesday Winter Series at Portmarnock Hotel & Golf Links.

Brady dropped just one shot all day and made six birdies, coming home in three-under 32 to edge out two-time former Irish PGA winner David Mortimer from Galway by three strokes.

Grange’s Michael McDermott birdied three of the last four holes to take third place in the nett with a one-under 70.

In the gross, Kerley made five birdies and two bogeys in a three-under-par 68 to edge out Newlands’ Jake Whelan by a shot. Whelan made just two bogeys but he will be disappointed that both came on par-fives.

Kilkenny’s Mark Power, fresh from winning the Under-18 Boys’ trophy during the Darren Clarke Foundation weekend at neighbouring Portmarnock, took third place with a solid 70. The 17-year old, plus three Irish international had 14 fours, three threes and just one five on his card.

But he wasn’t the only youngster to shine. Siblings James and Emma Fleming from Elm Park also took advantage of the mid-term break to tee it up. Playing off five, 12-year old Emma shot an excellent, nett 75.

Alliance victory for Curran

St Margaret’s Eoin Curran claimed the top prize in the second outing of the Titleist sponsored Druids Glen Winter Alliance at Druids Heath. The five-handicapper had 38 points to win on a countback from Glasson’s Colm Moriarty, who won the best gross.

Clontarf’s Eamonn Brady was second with 36 points with Druids Heath’s Matthew Kiernan third with 35 points and Arklow’s John Murphy the next best with 34.

Druids Glen’s Patrick Geraghty leads the overall Order Merit after the first two outings by four points from Curran, Delgany’s Marc Nolan and week one winner Johnny Young, the former Rosslare professional.

McSherry helps Kansas to victory

Niamh McSherry from Lurgan and Scottish women’s amateur champion Connie Jaffrey helped Kansas State University win the team title at the SMU Trinity Forest Invitational women’s college tournament at Trinity Forest Golf Club, Dallas, Texas.

They headed leaders Houston over the final round to finish with a total of 893 - two ahead of Houston with Tennessee (910) third. Missouri (913) finished T6, UNLV (Nevada-Las Vegas) (927) 12th and UTSA (Texas-San Antonio) (935) last of 13 teams.

Jaffrey, with rounds of 74, 76 and 73 for a total of 223 finished eight shots behind the winner and Kansas State freshman team-mate, Reid Isaac (72-69-74 for 215). McSherry had three rounds of 75 for a tied 13t finish on 225.

Gold for Maxwell at Junior Medal

Charlie Maxwell (Royal Curragh) won the ILGU Gold Medal at Seapoint. Fifty-five qualifiers from across the country competed having won their Club Junior Medal for players with the lowest aggregate of three nett score differentials (relative to CSS), one in each month June, July and August 2017.

Maxwell, who was involved in the ILGU Regional programme with Johnny Young this year has fallen significantly in handicap and fired 41 points. The Silver Medals went to Aine Donegan (Woodstock) and Olivia McCrystal (Holywood) while the Bronze Medal was won by Aoife Quinn (Dun Laoghaire).

Gold Medal (Best Nett Overall): Charlie Maxwell (Royal Curragh) 41pts; Silver Medal (Best Nett <20 handicap): Olivia McCrystal (Holywood) 39pts; Silver Medal (Best Gross): Aine Donegan (Woodstock) 36 pts; Bronze Medal (Best Nett 21 - 36 handicap): Aoife Quinn (Dun Laoghaire) 38pts; 2nd Nett: Tara Laverty (Royal Portrush) 39 pts; 3rd Nett: Chloe Maples Gaffney (Royal Tara) 39pts.

Deasy is Ulster under-14 champion

Ulster has a new Under-14 Open Champion. Mel Deasy from Bantry Bay shot a two under par 70 to be crowned champion at the Hilton Templepatrick. As darkness fell Ewan McArthur (Massereene) finished off his round with an eagle on the 18th to finish on 71 as he pushed Deasy all the way to the end but the boy from Bantry Bay proved too hard to beat.

Thomas Higgins from Roscommon was third on 72 with Joshua Hill from Galgorm Castle, Josephy Byrne from Baltinglass and Michael Fitzgibbon from Howth next best on 73.