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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Atalig takes MGA Ace of Aces crown

J.J. Atalig, second left, poses with his trophy and fellow Marianas Golf Association players during the awards ceremony for the 2013 MGA Ace of Aces Tournament late last month at Naked Fish Bar & Grill. (Contributed photo) J.J. Atalig ruled the Marianas Golf Association’s 2013 Ace of Aces Tournament held at the Marianas Country Club late last month.

Atalig secured the championship in the season-ending competition after shooting an even par 72 in the second and final round of the tournament and earning a net 66. The 6-handicapper carded an impressive 1-under par 35 on the front nine of the Marpi course and closed out with a 1-over par 37 on the back nine. Atalig made a big leap in the finale, as he only shot a net 76 in first round and finished sixth behind co-leaders John Poiroux and Harry Nakamura.

Poiroux settled for the runner-up honors, as he tallied a 1-over par 73 in the second round for a two-round net score 144, two strokes behind the 142 of Atalig. Nakamura dropped to third, as his 3-over par 75 in the final round gave him a 146.

Meanwhile, the second round of the club championship also doubled as the January Ace of the Month tournament and incidentally, Atalig’s 66 topped the field. With the victory, Atalig is assured of a slot to the 2014 season-ending tournament.

The 2013 club champion won the January Ace over Ron Benavente, Rep. Ralph Yumul, Mike Sablan, and Carl Hocog, who were in a logjam for second place with their similar net scores of 69. Hocog prevailed in the scorecard tiebreak, while Yumul, Benavente, and Sablan occupied the No. 3 to No. 5 spots.

In the closest to the pin contests, Jay Muna won on hole No. 1, John Sablan prevailed on No. 8, while Mike Sablan and Yumul took care of No. 12 and No. 16, respectively.

In related news, MGA elected its officers for 2014 with Jack Salas selected as president. Geri Dela Cruz was elected vice president, while other officers includes treasurer Erlina Naputi, fundraising chair Juan “Shine” Tenorio, handicap chair Joey Dela Cruz, and tournament director Ron Benavente.

Next up for MGA is the February Ace tournament, which will be held this Sunday on the west course of the Laolao Bay Golf & Resort. Show time is at 12pm, while tee off is set for 1pm. For more information, contact Salas at 287-4380 or Ron Benavente at 287-9011, or send email to marianasgolf670@gmail.com.

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