Kaarnalahti wins Irish Strokeplay at Dundalk

Finland’s Minna Kaarnalahti defeated defending champion Gertie McMullen to win her third Irish Senior Women’s Open Strokeplay title in four years after a six hole sudden death play off at Dundalk Golf Club. Both had finished on 227 after 54 holes.

Kaarnalahti closed a three shot gap on overnight leader McMullen after a fine one over par 74 in breezy conditions. The lead see-sawed between the two past champions throughout the round until McMullen forced extra time following an impressive regulation par on the home green.

The 1st and 18th were shared twice before Kaarnalahti seized the initiative with a closing bogey at the 6th extra hole to claim her third title in four years.

Ireland’s team of Pat Doran (Donabate), Sheena McElroy (Grange) and Gertie McMullen (The Island) won the Nations Cup from Canada, USA and The Netherlands.

Dundalk’s Ita Donnolly, who had pushed the leaders over the opening two rounds eventually finished in 13th place on 243.

There was lots of praise from all competitors after the event for the demanding challenge presented by the Dundalk course and it provided the ideal test for those competitors heading to Scotland for next week’s Senior British Open.

Dundalk Lady Captain Anne Doohan (left) and Men's Captain Brendan Cleary (right) pictured with Irish Senior Women's Strokeplay Champion  Minna Kaarnalahti and ILGU President Mary McKenna

Dundalk Lady Captain Anne Doohan (left) and Men’s Captain Brendan Cleary (right) pictured with Irish Senior Women’s Strokeplay Champion Minna Kaarnalahti and ILGU President Mary McKenna


FINAL 54 HOLE SCORES (PAR 73 SSS 74 CSS 74 74 74)
227 Minna Kaarnalahti (FIN) 75 78 74
227 Gertie McMullen (The Island) 74 76 77
234 Suzanne Corcoran (Portumna) 77 78 79
236 Pat Doran (Donabate) 80 80 76 Helen Jones (Royal Portrush) 80 80 76 Alison Murdoch (CAN) 78 79 79
238 Mary MacLaren (Royal Portrush) 80 81 77
240 Niamh Giblin (Dun Laoghaire) 77 82 81
241 Gabi Heuchel (ENG) 77 83 81 Mary Dowling (Mallow) 77 81 83
242 Kate Evans (RCD Ladies) 82 77 83 Catherine Reilly (The Heath) 74 84 84
243 Ita Donnelly (Dundalk) 75 82 86
244 Marilyn Henderson (Royal Belfast) 84 81 79 Becky Neal (USA) 83 82 79
246 Anne Ferguson (Ogbourne Downs) 83 81 82
249 Leslie Olive Henry (USA) 86 80 83 Georgia McCravey (USA) 82 84 83
250 Vivienne Houston (City of Derry) 86 84 80
251 Wanda Mochtar (NED) 87 81 83
252 Ann McAuley (Laytown & Bettystown) 91 80 81 Diane Williams (CAN) 83 85 84
254 Valerie Hassett (Ennis) 88 80 86 Kay McCartan (Greenore) 83 84 87
255 Ruth Maguire (Corrstown) 80 87 88 Gill Rouiller (Mannan Castle) 83 86 86
256 Judy Collins (CAN) 89 84 83 Pauline Walsh (Headfort) 83 89 84
257 Valerie Shannon (Lahinch) 89 87 81 Mary Feenan (CAN) 88 87 82
258 Pamela Williamson (SCO) 93 83 82 Mary McGoey (Greenore) 86 82 90 Paula Murray (Naas) 85 86 87 Evelyn Blackmon (USA) 84 87 87
261 Linda Evers (USA) 90 84 87 Nancy Beck (USA) 82 87 92
263 Elizabeth Neville (Bearna) 93 84 86
265 Patricia Black (Headfort) 94 85 86
266 Manja Reef (NED) 87 85 94
268 Ada Vrolijk (NED) 91 91 86
270 Joan Curran (Laytown & Bettystown) 87 92 91
271 Helen Thornton (Ardee) 94 88 89 Iet Hagels (NED) 87 94 90
282 Nancy Jackson (USA) 98 91 93

NATIONS CUP (2 scores from 3 to count each round)
459 IRELAND A Pat Doran [80] 80 76 Sheena McElroy 76 [DSQ] [DSQ] Gertie McMullen 74 76 77
467 IRELAND B Suzanne Corcoran 77 78 79 Mary Dowling 77 [81] [83] Helen Jones [80] 80 76
488 CANADA A Alison Murdoch 78 79 79 Diane Williams 83 85 84
489 USA A Nancy Beck 82 [87] [92] Leslie Olive Henry [86] 80 83 Becky Neal 83 82 79
504 USA B Evelyn Blackmon 84 [87] 87 Linda Evers [90] 84 [87] Georgia McCravey 82 84 83
513 CANADA B Judy Collins 89 84 83 Mary Feenan 88 87 82
521 NETHERLANDS A Iet Hagels 87 94 89 Wanda Mochtar 87 81 83
534 NETHERLANDS B Manja Reef 87 85 94 Ada Vrolijk 91 91 86