December 31, 2021
December 31 marks the end of this column’s twenty-third year and a busy twelve months of Cape Region golf.
January – I watch half of the field in the 2020 LPGA ShopRite Classic tackle the tough par 3 7th hole at Seaview’s Bay Course. Maria Fassi and Leona Maguire are leading an LPGA youth movement. New Rookery superintendent Mike Pyne and other greenskeepers discuss wintertime projects. The virtual PGA Merchandise Show includes new offerings from a smaller group of exhibitors.
February – Fingerprints golf clubs and grips show real promise for junior golfers. Pete and Zac Oakley tie for 3rd in the PGA Senior-Junior Championship in Florida. The Titleist factory tour video promotes the company’s quality control/quality assurance message.
March – Pre-season club preparations include regripping and checking the lie and loft of your clubs. The Cape Henlopen High School golf team returns to action after the covid cancellation of the 2020 season with a first-match win against Smyrna. Local golfer Mark Rath goes for a driver fitting at Second Swing’s Wilmington store. The Delaware State University women’s golf team resumes after a Covid layoff.
April – The Vikings win against Milford and Lake Forest. New pandemic-related rules for the State Championship emphasize individual handicap rankings. I celebrate my second hole in one. The DSU Women win their first golf tournament at the Naval Academy Invitational. Cape drops two games against Caesar Rodney and Polytech. The local club competition season begins. The First Tee of Delaware holds a training session for its volunteers at Mulligan’s Pointe, part of its expanded southern strategy.
May – The Vikings lose to Sussex Academy in a close contest and win against Sussex Central. The team finishes the regular season 9-3, with Quinn McCullough, Ethan Mercer, and Tom Burn qualifying for the state tournament. The DSU women’s golf team receives a $100,000 grant from the PGA Tour. Baipor Khunsri wins medalist honors and her team finishes second in the PGA Works Collegiate Championship. Sarah Lydic, Hannah Lydic, and Sawyer Brockstedt lead their Sussex Academy golf team to the Henlopen Conference Championship, with Cape finishing third.
June – Sarah Lydic wins the state championship, with her sister Hannah and Brockstedt contributing to Sussex Academy’s third place team finish. The first annual Ace Cup at Kings Creek CC, featuring twelve junior girls, raises $70,000 for the Alzheimer’s Association. Arlene Zamora wins the DWGA’s Senior Women’s Amateur Championship.
July – The Lydic sisters shine at the First Tee National Championship in Clemson, SC. Several Cape Region golfers play the Delaware Amateur. Local charity events experience a resurgence. Local courses see business booming. I play the newly finished 18 holes at Plantation Lakes.
August – Arlene Zamora wins the DWGA Women’s Amateur. Anita Pettitt wins the DSGA Senior Women’s title. Cleveland Golf holds a wedge fitting at The Rookery’s range. Rehoboth Beach CC head of instruction Chris Gray is the subject of a Cape Region Pro-File.
September – LPGA champion Mel Reid discusses her 2020 LPGA ShopRite win at the media day for the upcoming fall event. I learn a new swing from instructor Chris Gray. I play and review Heritage Shores Golf Club.
October – The Tee It Forward initiative shows mixed results after a decade. The DSU women’s golf team takes a T-4 team finish at the Naval Academy, highlighted by Khunsri’s individual title. “Be a goldfish” works on the golf course. LPGA putting and chipping practice routines are not just for pros. The Blue Hen Invitational at Rehoboth Beach CC is a success once again.
November –PBFUs are the opposite of a bounce back. Mo Martin shows that experience and guile can overcome youthful exuberance. Thanksgiving Week is a great time to see the good that charity tournaments can do.
December – This year’s collection of what I don’t want for Christmas is remarkable, but not in a good way. On the other hand, local golf gift opportunities for the holidays are very good.
Thanks for reading! I look forward to another year of writing about Cape Region golf.