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Maine Women's Amateur Championship

Teenagers battle in playoff as Haylock edges Plourde for golf crown

Plourde, longtime Samoset member who won tourney in 2018 at Rockland, battled back to force extra hole
By Ken Waltz and Zack Miller | Jul 21, 2020

Manchester — Three rounds of golf were not enough to settle the Maine Women’s Amateur Golf Championship, as a playoff was needed to settle the score and crown a state champion. In the end, 15-year-old Ruby Haylock chipped in on the first playoff hole to defeat 19-year-old former champion Bailey Plourde.

On a day where the two golfers separated themselves from the field in the three-day, 54-hole event at the Augusta Country Club, it was a two-player race to see who would emerge as the victor on Wednesday, July 22.

Haylock (76-73-74—223, +4) entered the final round with a two-stroke lead over Plourde (73-78-73—223, +4), and both made a statement early with birdies on the first hole.

After nine holes, Plourde of Newcastle, a longtime player at the Samoset Resort Golf Club in Rockport and member at the Sheepscot Links GC, had overcome the early deficit to draw even with nine to play.

In the final round of the Monday through Wednesday, July 20-22 event, Haylock went on a tear to start the back nine, as she made birdies on 11, 13, and 15 to extend her lead to four strokes with three holes to play. Plourde showed the resolve of a past champion and finished with birdies on 17 and 18 for a late rally to extend the tourney to an extra hole.

On the day, Haylock, a Turner Highlands member, shot 1-over 74 against Plourde’s 1-under 72 to separate themselves from the field. The players finished at 223 (+4) in regulation, a staggering 18 shots clear of third place.

The playoff went to Augusta’s par-4 10th hole, where both players hit tee shots into the left rough. Plourde managed to hit the green, while Haylock missed to leave herself away and next to play. Haylock then hit the defining shot of the tournament and chipped in for birdie in front of an appreciative crowd following the playoff.

Plourde had a long putt for birdie, but missed, and the event was decided in Haylock’s favor.

Three players tied for third at 241 on the difficult Augusta CC layout. Defending champion Jordan Laplume was joined by Rachel Smith and Kristin Kannegieser to round out the top five.

In addition to the overall title, the MWA is a flighted event and golfers from the rest of the field were honored for their solid play. Morghan Dutil won Flight 2, Debbie Murphy Flight 3 and Joy Eon and Juliette Jones tied in Flight 4.

Sisters Nancy Carlson and Susan Wootton of Rockland Golf Club were the only known Midcoast participants, as Carlson finished tied for 17th at 90-87-87— 264 (+45), while Wootton finished tied for 73rd as she posted 99-104-111—314 (+95).

Ultimately, Carlson finished fourth in Flight 2 and Wootton 22nd in Flight 3.

Carlson and Wootton were one of two sets of sisters who competed in the tourney, with Ruby and Jade Haylock the other, while the Haylocks' mother, Heidi, also competed.

After two days of play Ruby Haylock — the second youngest in the field — held the lead. She moved up the board with a 73, the lowest score of the second round.

First-round leader Plourde sat two strokes back. Plourde was at 73-78—151 (+5) and Haylock 76-73—149 (+3). The next golfer was five strokes behind Plourde.

Haylock played the front nine with eight pars and one birdie to make the turn in 1-under par on the day. After a bogey on Augusta’s 10th hole, she made an eagle on the 11th to get back into the red. Despite bogeys on 12 and 16, her round of 73 was the best of the day by five strokes, and was one of only three scores from the field under 80 on a difficult day on the course.

Overnight leader Pourde struggled early in her round and made the turn at 40. After early bogeys on the back nine the advantage grew for Haylock, but Plourde made birdies on the final two holes of the day to card 78 and enter the final round two strokes back to remain in striking distance.

It had been two years since Plourde participated in the most significant form of Maine women's golf competition, but there was little noticeable rust during the first day of the championship on Monday, July 20.

Plourde finished even-par 73 after the first round and was the only golfer in the field at level par. All other golfers shot above par on day one.

After day one, Plourde, a former Lincoln Academy of Newcastle standout, held a three-shot lead nearly 90 golfers.

On Monday, Plourde had her score to -4 at one point in the day, using birdies at one, seven and 11, in addition to an eagle on the fourth hole, to get deep under par. She made late bogeys in her final holes, but managed to shoot the best score on day one by three strokes.

The previous time the 21-year-old Plourde played in the women's amateur was 2018, when she was victorious at Rockland Golf Club, as she posted 76-78-78—232 (+13) to win by three strokes.

Plourde skipped last year's women's amateur to stay in Kentucky for a summer internship. Laplume of Dunegrass Country Club was victorious last year, after a runner-up finish to Plourde in 2018.

The field had to deal with sweltering heat and humidity throughout the first round, which made it a difficult start to the stroke-play event. The heat could not keep away the players or the small gathering of people around the first tee who were there to watch the ceremonial opening tee shots from Jane Diplock and Pete Hatfield that preceded the start of the tournament.

Diplock is a longtime member of Augusta CC, a five-time state senior amateur champion, a member of the Maine Golf Hall of Fame, and a winner of multiple ACC club championships. Hatfield was the head golf professional at the ACC for more than 40 years, has been a champion of women’s golf in Maine his entire career, continues to teach golf to women from multiple courses in central Maine, and also is a member of the Maine Golf Hall of Fame.

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