Golf

The defending D. Jones/Doherty Women’s Amateur Champion advances

Alexa Pano sank a 4-foot par putt to halve the 18th hole and defeat Courtney McKim 1 up on Wednesday.
Alexa Pano sank a 4-foot par putt to halve the 18th hole and defeat Courtney McKim 1 up on Wednesday. Courtesy

The defending Amateur and Senior division champions each went the distance in Wednesday’s quarterfinal matches at the 86th Ione D. Jones/Doherty Women’s Amateur Championship at Coral Ridge Country Club.

Playing her first competitive round of the tournament, Alexa Pano sank a 4-foot par putt to halve the 18th hole and defeat Courtney McKim 1 up. An hour later, reigning senior champ Lisa Schlesinger halved the 18th for a 1 up victory over Susan West.

“It was a really tough match,” said Pano, 13, of Lake Worth, who was exempt from Monday’s qualifying round and had a bye for Tuesday’s opening round of match play. “It was really back and forth.”

Schlesinger, who won her match Tuesday, said she missed too many greens on the front nine while West rarely missed a putt.

“I was never up in any part of the match until 17,” said Schlesinger, of Fort Myers, who two-putted for par from about 40 feet on the par-4 17th to go 1 up after West failed to get up and down.

At 18, West hit her approach into the water, took a drop and got on the green in four. Schlesinger left her approach from the fairway short of the pin and rolled her first putt to within a few feet, after which West, of Tuscaloosa, Alabama, conceded the hole and the match.

The other top seeds in the Amateur division did not fare as well as Pano. Second seed Haeley Wotnosky of Wake Forest, North Carolina, lost 1 up to Noelle Maertz of Clark, New Jersey. Third-seeded Georgia Oboh of Riviera Beach lost 3 and 2 to 2012 Doherty champ Meghan Stasi of Oakland Park. And fourth-seeded Marie Arnoux of Miami lost 4 and 2 to Lexi Harkins of Crystal Lake, Illinois. Harkins plays Pano in the semifinals starting at 8:48 a.m. Thursday, followed by Maertz and Stasi at 8:56.

Schlesinger plays Therese Quinn of Jacksonville, a 5-and-4 winner over Marilyn Hardy of Magnolia, Texas, at 8:32. Senior medalist Sylvie Van Molle of France defeated Beatriz de Arenas of Guatemala 4 and 2. She plays 2017 finalist Terrill Samuel of Toronto, who beat Diane Lang of Weston, 5 and 4, at 8:40.

The Senior First Flight semifinals have Tama Caldabaugh of Ponte Vedra Beach against Carolyn Creekmore of Dallas at 8:16 and Natalie McNicholas of Naples against Jewell Malick of Heath, Texas, at 8:24.

The Second Flight final has Vilma Sapp of Weston against Liz Haines of Gladwyne, Pennsylvania, at 8:08. Karin-Joyce Tjon of Miami Beach plays Debra Mielke of McKinney, Texas, in the Third Flight final at 8.

In the new consolation stroke-play event for those who lost their matches Tuesday, Gigi Higgins of Cape Coral was the top senior with a 5-over-par 78 followed by Andrea Kraus of Baltimore at 80, Barb Pagano of Port St. Lucie at 82, Sara Jane Rose of Tamarac at 83 and Carolyn Baumel of Miami Beach at 84.

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