Henderson, Gallupe lead
Success at last week’s amateur championships has carried over to the Nova Scotia Golf Association’s Junior championships for Julia Henderson and Matt Gallupe.
Henderson, who captured the NSGA women’s amateur at Mountain Golf and Country Club on Saturday, leads the provincial junior girls’ tournament following a first-round 77 Monday at her home course of Abercrombie Country Club.
Meanwhile, Brightwood’s Gallupe, who finished in a tie for third at the MCT Amateur at Bell Bay Golf Club and earned his first Willingdon Cup provincial team berth, tops the junior boys’ division after a 1-under 70 on Monday.
“Like I did at Bell Bay, I just kept it in play and didn’t do anything too stupid,” said Gallupe, who turns 18 next Thursday.
“I definitely had a lot of confidence going into today. But I feel more comfortable here at the junior because all these guys are my age. Last week, I was the youngest guy in the tournament. There aren’t the nerves that were there at Bell Bay. It’s pretty easy going.”
Henderson, 18, credited the experience of playing in her first women’s amateur for her stellar round.
“Playing in the amateur definitely prepared me for the juniors,” added Henderson, who became the first junior since Ken-Wo’s Laura Harris in 2004 to win the women’s amateur title. “It was a great experience for me and it definitely helped me out there today.”
Gallupe, who played in the first group off No. 11 with Bell Bay’s Brett McKinnon and Bruce Tomie of Northumberland Links, started his round with six consecutive pars before reeling off back-to-back birdies on Nos. 17 and 18. He added another birdie on the par-5 seventh and had bogeys on 4 and 8.
With Abercrombie’s sloping greens rolling at about a 12 on the Stimpmeter, Gallupe said landing approach shots close and keeping putts to a minimum were key.
“It came down to not having any three-putts today,” Gallupe said. “Some guys out there had six (putts).
“The greens here are running quicker than they were down at the PGA Tour event (Greenbrier Classic) on the weekend. They were running extremely fast today.”
“Starting off I was a little tentative on the greens,” added Gallupe, who drained a 15-footer for his birdie 3 on the par-4 18th. “But as soon as I got around to 17 and 18, I got a little more comfortable on the greens and I was able to sink some putts.”
Gallupe leads 16-year-old Ryan Nowe of Osprey Ridge by two strokes. Nowe had three birdies and four bogeys for a 1-over 72.
McKinnon and Seaview’s Lincoln Bradley are three shots off the pace after each fired an opening-round 73. McKinnon’s round included an eagle on the par-5 seventh, two birdies, four bogeys and a double bogey.
In the girls’ division, Henderson leads defending junior champion — and clubmate — Bernadette Little by three shots. Little carded an 80 on Monday.
Henderson said course knowledge was beneficial, especially on the greens.
“Having that insight on the course, and playing it so often, it’s always nice to have that advantage,” said Henderson, who had four birdies, six bogeys and a double bogey.
“The greens are rolling really fast so after a couple of holes you get used to the speed. Once you get that down pat, it’s pretty good.”
In the two-round midget championship, Ashburn’s Luke Green (80) leads Ken-Wo’s Taylor Brown and 12-year-old Shaun Margeson of Oakfield by two strokes in the boys’ division. In the girls’, Allison Chandler of Chester (93) leads Elizabeth Parsons of Northumberland Links by three shots.