Bay golfers on top

By CRAIG TIRIANA


There is no doubting Bay of Plenty-Thames Valley are the best team in the land.
The combined side kept their week-long unbeaten record intact and won the Lion Foundation Women's Interprovincial Tournament in Palmerston North over the weekend.
Bay surged past Waikato/King Country 4-1 in the final to take their 15th national title and the first since 1997.
The win gave the wider Bay of Plenty a unique golfing quadruple with their women's, masters, senior men and junior boys teams also holding their equivalent national titles at present, adding convincing weight the region is New Zealand's strongest all-round golfing province.
Team No 1 Penny Newbrook was in top form on the final day for the combined side.
The 21-year-old sunk a crucial one-metre putt on the final hole in the morning semi-final for her side to hold out Auckland 3-2. She ripped into her final match, making the turn in three under par and five up, before shaking hands with her Waikato-King Country opponent, Sarah McDonald, on the 15th hole.
"Everyone's really excited, really happy," Newbrook said yesterday.
The team of Newbrook, Tammy Clelland, Jackie Shin, Susan Lines, Mikayla Bell and manager Jane Little were also very satisfied after they were docked a hard-earned competition point for not handing in a card on time during pool play earlier in the week.
Newbrook said the stiff punishment had helped galvanise the side to make the semifinals and once they got to the final there was no stopping them.
The semifinals were both tense and tight affairs and both ended in 3-2 wins. North Harbour looked home when Sharon Ahn, who had won her previous six games, was 3 up with three to play against Slavich.

Unfortunately for the slight 13-year-old, she lost her nerve and Slavich won 16, 17 and 18 to take the contest to sudden death. At the first extra hole, Ahn three-putted.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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