Been a good year for Carol Towne
PRINCETON — For Carol Towne, 2018 could be summed up in the title of a classic Frank Sinatra song: “It Was a Very Good Year.”
Towne won a repeat championship in the Princeton Women’s Masters Bowling Tournament in January, and on Sunday added more winning hardware to her collection by capturing the 2018 Illinois Valley Women’s Golf Invitational title at Wyaton Hills Golf Course.
Towne’s victory was the topper of a virtual home sweep for the Wyaton players.
“My day was amazing,” Towne said. “I couldn’t ask for a better day, better play. A few hiccups here and there, but all in all, very excited with how I played.”
Towne bested a field of 44 players from nine area courses with a final score of 83 (beating runner-up Aiko Mendoza of Spring Creek by three strokes), playing in the “A” Flight with a less-than-ideal beginning to her day.
“My worst hole was number one, got off to a really ugly start,” Towne said. “But it’s all about the comeback. My best hole was on 16, birdied it.”
The Wyaton team also won the trophy for best gross score (365), so combined with a home course victory, that made the win even sweeter.
“Loved it, wouldn’t miss it for the world,” said Carolyn Barkley, who led the Wyaton Ladies with a net score of 64. “They’re happy with my score, and I’m happy with my score. I just crossed this off of my bucket list.”
Defending champ Cathy Verhulst of Prophet Hills had her own rough start that she couldn’t shake off, finishing the day with a round of 95.
“My day was bad,” Verhulst said. “On the front nine I hit the ball OK. I thought I was doing better than the score ended up being, though I had some bad bounces.
“The back (nine), it just fell apart a little bit. I got a bit frustrated, and that probably made the score worse.”
However, some consolation was seeing her team win the trophy for best net score of 294. The Wyaton Hills team had the actual lowest net score of 264, but tournament rules do not allow for one person or team to take both multiple trophies.
“We’re happy with it,” Verhulst said. “We were kind of surprised by it. I don’t think many of us were all too pleased with how we played, but obviously got enough to win something. Some of our ladies won within their flights, too, so we’re happy with that.”
Also per tournament rules, since Towne won the big prize of the day, the award in her “A” Flight went to Terry Folmar of Oak Ridge. Wyaton’s Anna Flaig was champ in her “B” Flight with a 92, while teammate Deb Maritz won the “C” flight in a playoff with a tally of 98.
Flaig’s flight win allowed Linda Molln of Green River to win in the Senior Division, while Spring Creek’s Hilda Koppens won for Super Senior.
Wyaton Hills owner Max Halberg Jr. felt like a winner himself as host of the 60th anniversary of the tournament.
“It’s been an honor to have it here, even more so because Mary Dagraedt (a founder of the tournament and an LPGA Teaching and Club Professionals Hall of Famer) taught me how to play golf. I hope everyone had a great time,” he said.