Sunday, March 08, 2015


Aberdeen-born Gemma Dryburgh came storming through the field with a 69 - the joint lowest round of the tournament - to finish fifth in a field of 84 at the Sun Trust Gator Invitational over the Mark Bostick course (par 70, 6002yd) at Gainesville, Florida today, writes Colin Farquharson.

Dryburgh, pictured, birdied the first, second, sixth, seventh, 16th and 17th. She might well have scored a remarkable come-from-behind victory but for bogeys at regular intervals - the fourth, fifth, eighth, 14th and 18th.
The Curtis Cupper and final-year student at Tulane University, New Orleans had scores of 75, 75 and 69 for 219 - four shots behind the winner Manon Gidali (Arizona), a senior-year student from Paris and a player who has a very good chance of being in the Continent of Europe line-up for the Vagliano Trophy match against GB and I at Malone Golf Club, Belfast in June.
Gidali had scores of 73, 72 and 70 for five-over-215 after the first two rounds were played in wet and windy weather.
Gemma Dryburgh posted her third top-5 finish of the four tournaments she has played this year, the two others being the South Anerican Am (2nd) and the UCF  Challenge ((3rd)
She finished in fifth position at Gainesville. closing with  a one under par 69, one of only three under par rounds all week
Starting at the eighth, Dryburgh's first eight holes followed the same pattern as the previous two days but she came alive at her ninth hole, the 16th, with a birdie and she added five more with chip-ins at the second and seventh, her final hole, to negate the bogeys at 18, 4 and 5.

The greens were extremely difficult and would compare well with those at the Evian, hence the high scoring but were at times unfair due to recent reseeding.
Her father John said: "Gemma was disappointed not to perform in her last home tournament last time out, just trying too hard, but hopefully this will put her back on track."

British stroke-play champion Meghan MacLaren (Florida International), a winner by eight strokes in her last US college outing, came back into form after opening with an 80, scoring 73-71 for 224 and a T10 finish.
"After her difficult first round, Meghan  then played some of the steadiest golf in the field. To finish with only nine players ahead of her  on the leaderboard was a tremendous achievement," said John Dryburgh.
Also on the 224 mark alongside MacLaren  was Northern Ireland's Jessica Carty (Denver) who put together rounds of 76, 74 and 74.
Brogan Townend (Texas-San Antonio) from Blackburn tied 26th on 228 (79-75-74).
Carnoustie's Jess Meek (Missouri) scored 79=75-77 for 231 and a T35 finish.
Another Scot, Glasgow-born Rachael Taylor (NC State) scored 77, 80 and 75 for 232 and a T38 finish.
A third Scot in the field, Clara Young (Missouri) from North Berwick finished T72 on 246 after a disappointing last round of 86 following earlier scores of 79 and 81.
"Due to the big freeze in the States, Jess Meek and Clara Young hadn't played golf outdoors since going back to University in January, other than one tournament. They performed reasonably well in the circumstances, especially given the difficulty of the greens.
Sophie Godley (Florida International) from Notts shot 84, 85 and 81 for 250 and 78th place.
Becky McGeehan (Texas-San Antonio), like Rachael Taylor, from Germany finished 83rd on 265 with rounds of 90, 86 and 89.
Arizona (879) won the team title ahead of Florida (889) and Florida State (902) with Denver (907) fourth.
Tulane (915) finished seventh in a field of 15 teams.
NC State (920) came 10th, Florida International (921) 11th and Texas-San Antonia (941) 12th.