Ron Hodges bested a field of nearly 50 duffers to take the latest Double Peoria Tournament at the Coral Ocean Point Golf Resort on Saturday afternoon thanks to the hidden holes, his handicap, and a healthy score.
Hodges rounded the links with a gross score of 82, but his 10.8 handicap gave him the low net of the day at 71.2 to edge second place finisher Oliver Sasaki, who handed in his card with a gross score of 73. Tournament score keepers tallied in his handicap of 1.2 to put him just percentage points behind at 71.8.
Gus Camacho also finished with a net score of 71.8, but finished in third as Sasaki beat him on all but two holes and was six strokes better than his gross score of 79.
The rain that caused a couple of delays in play did little deter the duffers as the tournament was not only a great way for some of Saipan’s top golfers to unwind on a Saturday afternoon, it gave the strikers and slicers their first peek at the newly designed tee boxes at holes No. 13, 14, and 17.
When the players climbed the stairs to the 13th tee box, they noticed an immediate difference as the windy conditions that used to be their ally to the green became a formidable foe from their left to right.
After replacing the pin and circling down to the 14th tee box, the golfers faced a tougher shot than they were previously accustomed to, as they leaned on the wind to cross the crashing waves to reach the green of the scenic par three.
When they got to the 17th tee box, the golfers enjoyed what designers hope will be regarded as one of the nicest upgrades to the course. This time around they had to change their strategy from the formerly long and straight 414 yard fairway from the white tees to better challenge the new formidable 450 yard opening shot overlooking the cliff.
Following the tournament, the golfers were treated to a post event dinner and awards presentation for their efforts on the course.
The opening of the new tee boxes isn’t the only good news to come out of the COP as local golfers will be able to take advantage of $20 greens fees today through Thursday, Dec. 22a savings of $10 from the current $30 local rate. The savings will not last; however, as the COP will be raising the local rates to $35 effective Jan. 1, 2006.
For more information about any of the upcoming events at the COP, contact Thomson or Omori by calling 234-7000.