The Sally: Kelly Calkin Prevails
By SEAN KERNAN
Courtesy Daytona Beach
ORMOND BEACH (January 13, 2007) -- Kelly Calkin was amazed at the interest shown by spectators watching the 81st women's South Atlantic Amateur championship Saturday. She couldn't quite figure out the interest they had shown in her.
But that's OK, because the amazement went both ways. Those following the 20-year-old University of Maryland golfer were amazed at how easy Calkin made it look in the final round on the way to a comfortable four-shot win in the prestigious women's amateur at Oceanside Country Club.
"When she went to the first tee and saw all these people sitting in bleachers she said, 'What is going on?' said Calkin's mother, Renie, who rode along in a golf cart because she has multiple sclerosis.
"I couldn't believe how many people were following," added the winner, who had an even-par 72 for a 7-over 295 total. "It felt like an LPGA event."
Any of those fans looking for the proverbial wheels to fall off of Calkin's game had to look elsewhere because the Sally rookie was in total control.
Relaxed and confident, Calkin enjoyed the rare opportunity to have her mother, a former professional golfer, along for the ride of their lives. Unlike some of the more recent Sally champions who came here with a high amateur ranking or impressive junior resume, Calkin was a relative unknown. She was ranked 183rd on Golfweek's women's amateur list.
Not anymore. Watch out Atlantic Coast Conference.
"I just came in here planning to get ready for the (spring) season, so I'm pleasantly surprised," said Calkin, who hadn't played a round of golf for two months prior to Sally week. "This raises my confidence tremendously."
The part-time Palm Coast resident is fully aware that the women's NCAA championship will be played at nearby LPGA International in May.
"That's about 15 minutes away from my house," Calkin said. "Hopefully I will be there."
If Calkin can repeat the efforts she made at the Sally in only her second victory since high school, she may have more surprises ahead.
Key to her newfound success is improvement in her iron play and short game since she added new irons and wedges to her bag before the fall college season.
"Apparently they work wonders," she said with a smile. "Something just clicked as soon as I got them. My scoring average went down by three or four (strokes) in the college season."
Despite it being one of the warmest final days in Sally history, Calkin put this championship on ice when she rolled in a 45-foot putt for birdie on the par-3 ninth green that is basically center stage in front of Oceanside's clubhouse.
"I wouldn't say I felt like it was over, but I knew if I was around par I would be all right," she said.
The only player able to make any type of charge was University of Florida signee Jessica Yadloczky, who fired a tournament-low round of 68. But Yadloczky's heroics -- played out four groups ahead of the final pairing -- were just enough to secure second place by one shot over Wake Forest signee Natalie Sheary.
Susan Choi, a recent grad of Wellesley (Mass.), used a 71 -- the only other sub-par round of the day -- to lead a trio tied for fourth place at 301. Two-time Sally champ Virginia Derby Grimes and another mid-am player, Kathy Hartwiger, rounded out the top six.
Embry-Riddle's Tara Allen carded a 79 to win the First Flight with a total of 326.
The shot of the day belonged to Naval Commander Elizabeth Breza, who had a hole-in-one on the 136-yard par-3 16th.
74-76-73-72~295 Calkin, Kelly
74-81-76-68~299 Yadloczky, Jessica
76-74-72-78~300 Sheary, Natalie
77-74-77-73~301 Grimes, Virgina
74-76-79-72~301 Hartwiger, Kathy
77-80-73-71~301 Choi, Susan
79-73-75-77~304 Meixner, Kira
77-79-73-77~306 Bodemann, Alexandra
75-74-81-76~306 Chudy, Tiffant
75-82-78-73~308 Connor, Rachel
75-79-77-78~309 Choate, Tonya
82-75-77-77~311 Brynestad-Grotvedt, Boo
81-79-76-75~311 Prats, Tiffany
80-79-76-77~312 Kim, C. J.
77-83-77-76~313 Nam, Susan
80-81-76-76~313 Kuhn, Rebecca
80-83-73-78~314 Tipping, Emma
80-83-77-74~314 Hardy, Jill
80-79-77-79~315 Orr, Miranda
81-82-79-73~315 Brand, Emily
82-79-77-78~316 **Thompson, Carol S.
81-81-73-84~319 Wetzel, Kristin
87-71-75-87~320 Williams, Rachel
82-80-79-79~320 Weder, Maggie
83-80-79-80~322 Crochet, Nichole
83-79-82-78~322 **Pagana, Barbara
85-82-78-79~324 **Parker, Reggie
83-79-81-82~325 Truitt, Carly
88-77-78-82~325 Huxford, Patricia
85-84-78-79~326 Allen, Tara
82-83-80-82~327 Strite, Laurie
84-84-78-81~327 Fitzpatrick, Erin
86-83-77-81~327 **Yelovich, Dianne
85-88-75-80~328 Cassidy, Rachel
82-89-80-77~328 Carlton, Clare-Marci
84-89-78-77~328 Cummings, Daria
85-80-83-82~330 **Brown, Pam
81-87-80-82~330 **Haines, Elizabeth
85-83-86-77~331 Ah Sam, Luneta
78-86-80-88~332 **Brower, Taffy
90-79-82-81~332 **Mowry, Jean
83-81-82-87~333 **Richey, Cathy
87-80-82-85~334 Carpenter, Janie
78-84-90-82~334 Carty, Sarah
85-87-81-81~334 Pederson, Missy
86-87-80-82~335 Von Glahn, Monica
88-84-79-85~336 Dewar Dawn
86-86-84-82~338 **Easterly, Natalie
90-84-79-86~339 **Kuykendall, Cindy
88-84-82-85~339 **Carson, Laura
86-85-86-82~339 Shinn, Ashley
91-83-83-84~341 **Aydlett, Clate
88-92-79-82~341 **de Luis, Teri
84-88-89-80~341 Larsen, Caroline Martens
88-85-86-84~343 **Sang, Debbie Mook
92-82-87-82~343 **Roberts, Joanie
87-90-84-82~343 Zwartynski, Andrea
89-88-85-82~344 Skowronski, Mayura
91-88-83-82~344 Kenkel, Suzanne
95-84-83-82~344 Greenway, Karen
90-86-82-88~346 Turnage, Carol
88-94-79-85~346 **George, Bonnie
84-87-83-93~347 **Stewart, Angela
101-82-84-80~347 Gulliksen, Meaghan
97-89-81-80~347 **Adams, Jennifer
87-98-81-85~351 Sze, Angel
97-83-91-82~353 Hughes, Meg
92-83-93-87~355 **Schwab, Diana
89-87-90-91~357 Elmendorf, Marie
89-92-91-85~357 **Masterson, Diane
95-91-85-87~358 Merritt, Mary
94-93-87-84~358 Petrillo, Mary Ann
96-89-90-83~358 **Akins, Sally
98-90-87-83~358 Sheehan, Maureen
94-92-89-84~359 Breza, Elizabeth
85-89-98-88~360 **Schwedler, Debe
101-89-88-82~360 **Marden, Donna
89-99-93-82~363 Wilburn, Katie
94-91-89-92~366 Hill, Marissa
99-87-87-94~367 **Blackmon, Evelyn Byrd
88-93-92-95~368 **Demarco, Jan
95-96-87-93~371 Callahan, Denise
99-87-97-90~373 Johnston, Serena
99-86-96-97~378 **Williams, Nancy
103-91-92-98~384 **Smith, Karen Lynn
99-93-94-100~386 **Likens, Marci
103-108-91-98~400 Rose, Marcella
101-99-107-93~400 Baines, Catherine
103-101-97-103~404 Montgomery, Courtnay