Kristine Leonen led Del Monte’s charge to post a huge 21-point early lead over defending champion Manila Southwood Masters on the first day of the 7th PAL Ladies Interclub at Santa Barbara, Iloilo.
Del Monte’s 137 points included Leonen’s two birdies at holes 4 and 14, while Southwoods was able to post only 116 including 44 from Abigail Arevalo, Southwoods’ youngest player at 12.
Del Monte’s and the tournament’s youngest player, Sofia Chabon, at 11, has yet to play.
Apple Fudolin and Pam Mariano contributed 45 and 43 for Del Monte, while team captain Beachie Abiera and Sandy Velhagen’s 41 and 31 completed Southwoods’ day one output.
“My team gave their all despite the stress and challenges. It is sweet victory for us today. But we have a long way to go and we will just take it on a day-to-day basis,” said Del Monte team captain Maribel San Miguel.
“Sta. Barbara is really a long, difficult course. The par 4s are longer than the types you can see in other courses. Yesterday’s heavy rains rendered the course soggy, making it more difficult to play,” said Abiera.
Top scorer though was Lois Kaye Go of Cebu Country Club who posted 53 followed by Harmie Constantino of Villamor Golf Club, 51, both under the Founders division.
Before day one started, Del Monte made critical changes to its line-up to come up with a team average of 5.36 that allowed them to field eight players, instead of six, under the four-to-play, three-to-count format.
Other division leaders are Villamor, 105, for Founders; Tagaytay Highlands, 109, for Sportswriters; and Rancho Palos Verdes, 95, for Friendship.
Squads coming from Australia, Japan and Singapore are seeing action in the event, which is in the second year of its revival. A total of 26 teams are playing.
The event has adopted the theme Fairways & Magic and is being sponsored by Airbus, Asia Brewery, Avis Car Rental, Department of Tourism, Mareco Broadcasting Network (Crossover), Media Five, Stargate Media and Solar Entertainment.
The PALakbayan sponsors are B/E Aerospace, Boeing International Corp., RMN Networks and Sarabia Manor Hotel & Conventions Center. Donors include Amazing Planet, Century Properties, Diamond Hotel Phils., EDSA Shangri-la, Plantation Bay Resort & Spa, Print Town/Lexmedia and Tanduay Distillers and Hyatt Hotel & Casino.
Day 1 scores –
Championship: Del Monte 137, Southwoods Masters 116. Founders: Alabang 1 104, Cebu 112, Negros 107, Pueblo 73, Sta. Elena 101, Camp John Hay 91, Villamor 105, Singapore 83. Sportswriters: Mactan 84, Tagaytay Highlands, 109, Valley Ladies 98, Eagle Ridge 80, Australia 63, Southwoods Legends 72, Bacolod 93. Friendship: Iloilo 78, Alabang 2 80, Manila 57, Camp Aguinaldo 73, Apo Golf 94, Japan 60, Rancho Palos 95, Victorias 57, Davao 69.