AmateurGolf.com's Players of the Month: February 2023
28 Feb 2023
by Jim Young of AmateurGolf.com
Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs weren't the only ones turning in outstanding performances in the month of February.
Two Europeans left their mark in South Africa, a pair of seniors were on top of their games in Florida and two female amateurs from worlds away notched their first collegiate victories -- one which will certainly tug on your heartstrings.
• • • • •
AmateurGolf.com's Players of the Month for February 2023
The 20-year-old Frenchman had quite a month for himself in South Africa, becoming the first-ever player to win the South African Stroke Play Championship
, the Proudfoot Trophy (36-hole stroke play qualifying) and the South African Amateur Championship in the same season. A near-perfect final round of 6-under-par 66 earned him a six-shot victory at the South African Stroke Play Championship. Four days later, he became the first French winner of the Proudfoot Trophy, a 36-hole stroke play qualifier of the South African Amateur Championship, when he defeated reigning Amateur champion Aldrich Potgieter on the second playoff hole. He then preceded to defeat GolfRSA National Squad member Kyle de Beer, 3 & 2 in the 36-hole final of the South African Amateur Championship
After capturing her first collegiate win at the Collegiate Invitational in Guadalajara, Mexico, the Baylor standout from Whitley Bay, England followed up with a fifth-place showing at the Therese Hession Regional Challenge in Palos Verdes, Calif., where she shot a final round 67 to help the Bears to a third-place finish behind Oregon and Stanford. Belsham now has six top-10 finishes in less than three full seasons at Baylor.
There was no shortage of top-flight players at the Moon Golf Invitational
last week in Melbourne, Fla., including Ingrid Lindblad and Latanna Stone of LSU, Annabel Fuller of Florida, a three-time Curtis Cup team member for Great Britain & Ireland, U.S. Women's Amateur runner-up Monet Chun of Michigan and last year's R&A Girls Amateur Championship, Lottie Woad of Florida State, to name a few. However, the surprise winner of the individual title was Augusta's Mirabel Ting, who did not compete in the fall following the unexpected death of her father. Playing in her first collegiate event, Ting carded three sub-par rounds of 68-67-68 to post at 13-under, and then defeated Leila Raines of Michigan State by draining a 54-hole putt on the second extra hole to complete the emotional victory.
The reigning U.S. Mid-Amateur champion
tuned up for his upcoming Masters appearance by traveling with the Irish National Team to South Africa, where he tied for 16th in the African Amateur, tied for eighth at the South African Stroke Play Championship and reached the semifinals of the South African Amateur where he fell to South African Kyle de Beer, 2 and 1.
The St. Petersburg, Fla. resident took an early lead in AmateurGolf.com's Senior Player of the Year points race by outlasting some of the top senior players in the nation to capture a one-stroke victory in the senior division of the Gasparilla Invitational
. Finster, who entered the final round tied with Jeff Knox at 1-over par, shot a 4-over 74 which was good for a one-stroke win over Knox, 2019 U.S. Senior Amateur champion Bob Royak and AmateurGolf.com's 2022 Super Senior Player of the Year Doug Hanzel. It was his second in as many months, as he stayed close to home to capture the Golfweek Senior Player of the Year Classic
in wire-to-wire fashion at the Tampa Palms Golf and Country Club in January.
PETER VAN INGEN
Van Ingen won the Society of Seniors Spring Classic Legend's Division
in dominating fashion at Abacoa Golf Club, where he took a seven-stroke lead into the final round on his way to a five-shot win over Don Donatoni and Bill Barnes. A week prior to his victory at Abacoa, Finster recorded a top-10 finish at the SOS Spring Classic Super Senior Division, where he finished eighth.