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Golf Roundup Ireland, U.S. finish on even terms in Byrne Cup

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By John Manley

Ireland sent a team of eight golfers to Illinois for the recent Byrne Cup, sponsored by that state’s PGA section. The four ball and singles matches were held at three different courses. The opening four ball event at the Kemper Lakes Golf Club found Ireland and the U.S. splitting four matches.

Ireland’s victories came via Brendan McGovern (Headfort) and Karl O’Donnell, 1 up victors over Jim Holmes and Stan Weil, and John Dwyer (Ward) and Gordon Morrison (Nenagh), who defeated Andy Hinson and Dan Kochevar, 2 and 1. The Illinois team was well represented by Jim Miller and Terry Russell, who got the better of Ireland’s Kevin Kelliher and Darren McLaughlin, 4 and 2, while Pete Latkiewicz and Doug Nixon handed Ireland’s Shane O’Grady (Black Bush) and Leonard Owens (Royal Dublin) a 2 up defeat.

A subsequent four ball encounter at the Dunes Club resulted in two wins for Ireland, one victory for the U.S. and a draw in the fourth match. Ireland’s wins were posted by Morrison and Owens, who bested Holmes and Russell, 4 and 3, and by McGovern and O’Donnell, 2 and 1 victors over Miller and Nixon.

Kelliher and McLaughlin halved their match with the U.S. team of Kochevar and Steve Patterson. Dwyer and O’Grady suffered Ireland’s lone defeat of the day, a 2 and 1 victory by Hinson and Latkiewicz.

Ireland needed four singles victories out of the seven played at the Rich Harvest Golf Links to win the Byrne Cup, but could manage just three. The final result was a tie, with both teams scoring 7.5 points over the three days. Showing well for the Irish team were McGovern, who defeated Russell, 5 and 4, Morrison, who defeated Kochevar, 3 and 2, and O’Grady, who defeated Holmes, 2 and 1. Falling victim to the U.S. squad were Kelliher, who was downed by Brian Groszek, 7 and 6, Owens, who lost to Patterson, 5 and 3, McLaughlin, who lost to Hinson, 5 and 3, and Dwyer, who was defeated by Miller, 1 up.

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