By Darren Matte
(MURRELLS INLET, SC) – It was almost like déjà vu from 2014 as soggy conditions greeted the players at Wachesaw Plantation Club on the final day of the Can-Am Junior Team Matches. The American team, consisting of juniors from the South Carolina Junior Golf Association, earned 147 of 288 possible points to defeat the Canadian squad, from the Golf Association of Ontario (GAO), 225 to 207, to earn the 2015 title of Can-Am Champions.
The competition got underway on March 21 with best-ball team matches. While the event was played in a match-play format, the scoring was slightly different than a traditional match-play. Each match played the full 18-holes and a point was awarded for each hole with tied holes counting for half a point.
After the first day, the American team held a 12-point margin over the Canadian juniors 78 to 66. Ontario’s lone win came from Grace St-Germain and Monet Chun who took their match 11.5-6.5. Brendan Seys and Kelvin Lim managed a 9-9 split in their match, as did the team of Madeline Marck-Sherk and Ruthven’s Alyssa Getty.
On Day 2, the Canadian ladies came out firing with Grace St-Germain defeating Savanah Goodman by a 13.5 to 4.5 margin and Getty handing a loss to Jodee Tindal 12.5 to 5.5, cutting the two-day lead in half after just two matches.
The rest of the afternoon remained tight with Ontario’s girls winning two matches and the South Carolina team earning three. Chloe Currie was a winner in her match, 10-8 over Victoria Huskey, and Isabella Portokalis defeated Morgan Cox 10.5 to 7.5.
In the end, the South Carolina team held on for the 225-207 win.
It was a challenging final day on the course as wet conditions impacted the players and the course. At the conclusion of play, it was a great weekend of golf for both GAO and South Carolina Junior Golf Association players. It was also the closest that the Can Am Matches have been since 2010, when the Golf Association of Ontario youngsters last hoisted the Joseph T. Simons Can-Am Trophy.
“The highlight of the event was the impressive performance by the girls in the singles matches. The dominant wins by St-Germain and Getty along with the solid wins by Currie and Portokalis,” said Mary Ann Hayward, Manager of Sport Performance. “Although Bryson was the only boy to post a win in the boys’ singles matches, many of the boys played extremely well. All of the team members fought hard for every point gained on the last day and we are extremely proud of everyone for their performance in the matches.”