Skoler Takes Home Second Straight Baker Trophy At Women's Stroke Play Championship - MASSGOLF

SKOLER TAKES HOME SECOND STRAIGHT BAKER TROPHY AT WOMEN’S STROKE PLAY CHAMPIONSHIP

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: JUNE 15, 2022

SANDWICH, Massachusetts – Rebecca Skoler (Pine Brook Country Club) didn’t enter round 2 with a lead, but she walked off the course at The Ridge Club with a four-stroke advantage to capture her second consecutive Women’s Stroke Play Championship title. The win makes her the seventh woman to win the championship in back-to-back years and the first to accomplish the feat since Shannon Johnson (Thorny Lea Golf Club) did so in 2018.

Securing the Tournament Division title was Joanne Catlin (Oak Hill Country Club), who maintained a tight lead through the final holes to finish with a 16-over 158.

ONLINE: FINAL RESULTS | PHOTO GALLERY | ROUND 1 RECAP | CHAMPIONSHIP INFORMATION | PAST CHAMPIONS

“It’s super special,” Skoler said. “The list of winners is super strong and it’s just an honor to be on that list.”

Rebecca Skoler, the 2022 Women’s Stroke Play Champion. (David Colt)

The University of Virginia standout noted after Round 1 that she felt she could have improved her play on the notoriously difficult course at The Ridge Club but felt that she had a better handle on it after her first go-around.

“It’s definitely a tough course and you got to be really smart out there,” she said. “I think I managed well after the first few holes yesterday, did have a little bit of a rough run today but overall super happy with how I played this week.”

Skoler finished with an even-par 142.

Helping Skoler out on the course was her father who, like a number of other dads out on the course, caddied for her ahead of Father’s Day this weekend.

“He doesn’t get to caddy much or come to my practice much during the school year, so it’s super nice to have him back on the bag for the summer. It’s a lot of fun, especially because we haven’t been together for a few months.”

Skoler edged out Johnson, who was also her Day 1 partner at the Griscom Cup earlier this month, after beginning Round 2 with a one-stroke deficit. Johnson ended with a 4-over 146 after having trouble midway through the round on holes 8, 9 and 11.

Tying for third with a 9-over 151 were Catie Schernecker (The Country Club), Kaitlynn Washburn (Scituate Country Club) and Sandwich native Emma Abramson (The Ridge Club).

Shannon Johnson, the second-place finisher, eyes a shot. (David Colt)

TOURNAMENT DIVISION RECAP

After coming into the day in fourth place, Catlin made a move on the front nine to edge round-1 leader Kym Pappathanasi (Renaissance). She also had to hold off Gina Gallagher (Marlborough Country Club), who cut a multiple-stroke deficit to just one on the final holes and ended with a 17-over 159.

“I had a 77, which is probably the third time I’ve been in the 70s since the summer, so I was really happy with the game today,” Catlin said. “I was glad to get it over with because there’s trouble on every hole.”

Pappathanasi ended tied with Christine Gagner (The Tour) for third with a 21-over 163.

Rounding out the top of the leaderboard was 2021 Tournament Division winner Barb Hecimovich (Beverly Golf & Tennis Club), who came into the day in third but gained four strokes in round 2 to finish 22 over.

Joanne Catlin holds the Tournament Division trophy. (David Colt)

WOMEN’S GOLF AT THE RIDGE CLUB

The Women’s Stroke Play Championship has historically been held at courses across the Cape, making it an especially significant event for women golfers across the Cape in addition to the greater Bay State.

This year is the second time The Ridge Club has hosted the event and the first time the club has done so in two decades. The Ridge Club last co-hosted the championship with Willowbend in 2002 when Kelly Robb took home the title.

“To have this kind of championship at The Ridge Club is extremely important,” head professional Matthew Baran said. “We have a rich history with women’s golf here, and we are proud of the young talent we have with Emma Abramson competing this week. It is great to see some great golf being played by these women. The Ridge Club is a big supporter of the women’s game with Jane Blaylock being a member here and a great women’s program. We love the competition here and the golf course is a great test.”

In addition to the Stroke Play Championship, The Ridge Club has hosted other highly regarded women’s events such as the BJ’s Charity Championship ⁠— in which Legends of the LPGA compete to raise money for the BJ’s Charitable Foundation.

“We have a great supporting cast here when it comes to the BJ’s Classic,” Baran said. “The members here are very supportive and several of them volunteer for the event. With the star-studded field we had last year, there were a lot of people that came out to watch. It was great to have Annika [Sörenstam] here, one of the legends of the game, playing the course and there was quite a bit of excitement around that. The greater Cape community showed up to watch some good golf, a much larger crowd than usual.”

The Ridge Club. (David Colt)

NOTES & NOTABLES

  • Skoler won’t be in Sandwich for long, as she heads to the British Women’s Amateur Championship in Hunstanton, England, tomorrow morning. Skoler will be one of three Americans in the field as she makes her debut at the event. “I’m not super nervous,” Skoler said. “I think if anything I know I’m gonna learn a lot about my game, so I’m just gonna try to have fun and not set any expectations my first time playing over there and my first time playing in a really big amateur event like this.”
  • The event returned to the Cape this year after it was hosted at Ledgemont Country Club for the first time last year in Seekonk. Prior to 2021, it was hosted at a Cape Cod golf course for four straight years.
  • The Robert Von Hagge-designed course posed quite a challenge to competitors in both divisions, with only one golfer (Rebecca Skoler) ending at par after two rounds and none shooting below par on both days. Hole 10 seemed to pose the greatest challenge, with no golfers recording a birdie or eagle and eight coming away with a double bogey. 
  • Second-year Mass Golf volunteer and member of The Ridge Club Matthew Lee made his debut as a Rules Official at his home course on Wednesday. Lee could be seen patrolling the 17th and 18th holes.

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