Ouimet Memorial: Whelan hangs on for win
Champion 2012 Francis Ouimet Memorial
Champion 2012 Francis Ouimet Memorial

IPSWICH, Mass. (July 27, 2012) -- Jack Whelan held off a strong charge for a wire-to-wire victory in the 45th Francis Ouimet Memorial Tournament at Woodland Golf Club on Friday. The 19 year old St. Lawrence University sophomore from Myopia Hunt Club had a final round one-under-par 71 for a five under par 211 and a one stroke margin over runner-up Colin Brennan of Indian Ridge. Whelan shared the lead at even par 72 after the first round at Ipswich CC on Wednesday, and had a two shot lead with a four under par 68 for the second round at the Golf Club at Turner Hill on Thursday. The final round is always played at 6,721 yard Woodland Golf Club, Mr. Ouimet's home course.

Whelan came into the Ouimet Memorial ranked sixth in the MGA points system while Brennan was the points leader. Whelan said, "I wasn't nervous coming into the final round and, at one point, was four under for the round." He birdied the 1st, 6th and knocked it on the par five 11th and 12th holes in two to make birdie, but slipped back a little with bogeys at 15 and 16. Brennan, a 23 year old senior at Johnson & Wales in Miami, was five strokes back at the start of the round and hit a hot steak with birdies on 10-13. He bogeyed 17, and sunk a 30 foot birdie putt at 18 to force Whelan to make par at 18 and hold on for the win. Jamison Randall of Alpine CC in Rhode Island had a 71 to finish third at 213.

Dick King of Hyannis Golf Club, a 63 year old retired data consultant, came back from a tough start with birdies at 9,10 and 11 and another at 16 for a final round 74 enroute to a 220 total and a three shot victory in the Eddie Lowery Senior Division. It was the first major win for King. Jack Kearney of Elmcrest, the 2010 Lowery champ, was second at 223 while defending champ Mike Cole of Gannon was third at 224.

Megan Khang of South Shore CC, a 14 year old who is considered one of the top junior prospects in the US, shot a 69 to successfully defend her crown in the one-round women's division. Julia Ford of Cyprian Keyes, who is also 14, was second at 71 while Kristin MacDonald of Thomson was third at 75.

ABOUT THE Francis Ouimet Memorial

This 54-hole stroke play tournament honors Francis Ouimet, considered America's First Golf Hero and one of the most important figures in the history of golf. His victory in the 1913 U.S. Open in a stunning playoff upset of Harry Vardon and Ted Ray is viewed as the turning point in American Golf. The event, first played in 1968, one year after Ouimet's death, is held at three top Boston-area courses, with the final round always taking place at the 6,721 yard Woodland Golf Club (Mr. Ouimet's home course). The most notable winner to date is Brad Faxon, who captured the 1980 event. There are three divisions: Men, Women, and Senior.

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