Talbert wins despite opponent's pair of holes in one

Lightning struck twice in the form of holes in one at the Carolinas/ Georgia Junior Championship.


Isabella Skinner aced the 170-yard, par-3 third hole, to rebound after an opening bogey. She finished her front nine at even-par after four pars, two bogeys and a birdie.

Then it happened again.

Skinner recorded her second ace on the 142-yard, par-3 11th hole.

“It’s insane,” said Skinner, of Cumming, Ga. “I’m in shock. It doesn’t feel real.”

Skinner’s two aces gave her a boost after a first-round 77 that had her four strokes back entering the final round, including dancing in and out of the lead. However, two consecutive bogeys on 14 and 15, and three total in her last six holes, dropped her to second place.

“I feel really lucky to have that happen,” Skinner said. “One was good enough, but two was a complete shock. I wasn’t feeling too well this morning, but I woke up and when that first one happened, it gave me the confidence and momentum, and I kept going with it. When that second one happened, it was unreal.”

North Augusta’s McKenzie Talbert posted 74 to win the junior invitational at Mount Vintage Golf Club by one stroke Monday.

As Skinner played with the lead throughout the day, Talbert remained in striking distance following an opening-nine of 38. After her fourth bogey on 11, she finished her last seven holes at one-under, with a birdie on 13 proving crucial.

Talbert’s back nine was seemingly a repeat of the first round when she posted an opening 4-over 40, followed by 1-under 35.

“Probably the thing that won it was hanging in there yesterday,” Talbert said. “I shot a 40 on the front and turned around and shot a one-under on the back. A year ago, I would have taken myself out of it; I probably would have done the same thing on the back I did on the front. But I was hanging in there and was thinking it will get better, and it did.

“There’s no rhyme or reason for it. You can call it clutch or whatever you want, but that’s just the way it happened.”

Matt NeSmith, of North Augusta, endured late bogeys for a two-stroke win at 145.

Davis Bateman shot 70, the day’s low round, but ran out of holes after beginning the day nine strokes back of NeSmith. His second-round push earned him a tie for second with Davis Womble (74– 73).