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PAWTUCKET, Rhode Island – Competing in her second Mass Golf women’s tournament of the season, Norton’s Megan Buck (Thorny Lea GC) said that having a partner in fellow competitor Sue Curtin (Boston GC) took some pressure off because she knew that if she hit a bad shot, she could rely on her partner to get them through the situation.
On Thursday at Pawtucket Country Club, the team of Buck and Curtin hit very few bad shots, combining to shoot an 8-under 65 in the 18-hole four-ball stroke play tournament, including a 5-under 31 on their back nine – to repeat as champions in the Hannah D. Townshend Cup – the oldest of the six women’s tournaments hosted by Mass Golf.
The duo shot matching scores with the group they were paired with – the team of Hannah Ghelfi and Natalie Galligan from Pocasset Country Club – and following a tie breaker which pitted the two teams’ final nine holes scores, Megan Buck and Sue Curtin were crowned champions.
Ultimately topping the other 28 teams on the leaderboard, Buck and Curtin knew the competition was going to be challenging, considering the fact that Ghelfi – the 2017 Massachusetts Women’s Amateur champion – and Galligan were among the teams in the field.
“Coming into today, compared to last year, we knew that Hannah and Natalie had teamed up together, so we knew that it was going to be some tough competition,” said Curtin, who had also won the tournament in 2014 with Pam Kuong. “We got off to a slow start, but were able to regroup after nine and put some gas on it.”
After the duo made par on each of the first three holes, Buck carded birdie on the par-4 4th hole and the team added birdies on both the 7th and 9th holes to make the turn at 3-under, but still trailed by three strokes after Ghelfi and Galligan combined for four birdies and an eagle on their front nine.
On the back nine, Curtin made birdie on both the 11th and 12th holes and added two more on the 15th and 16th before Buck added her third of the day on the par-5 17th hole. Both teams shot par on the par-4th 18th hole to finish tied atop the leaderboard before the aforementioned tie breaker was used to determine this year’s winner.
Becoming the first team to win back-to-back titles since Ann Marie Locke & Leslie Greis accomplished the feat in the 1979 and 1980 seasons, the team said they were grateful to join some of the state’s top golfers who have gone on to win this event.
“When you look at the trophy and all the names on it, it’s definitely adds extra meaning to the victory,” said Curtin. “To compete against the state’s top competitors and ultimately succeed, it’s great to know that our hard work paid off.”
Despite competing with different partners, both Buck and Curtin recently played in the U.S. Women’s Amateur Four Ball Championship in California.
The Hannah D. Townshend Cup, which dates back to its inaugural year in 1930, brought together competitors who hold their Ghin handicap index at a Mass Golf club and whose handicap indices combined did not succeed 18.0.
Four more women’s tournaments are scheduled throughout the 2018 season, beginning with the Eleanor W. Allen Bowl, being contested at Red Tail Golf Club in Devens on July 23.