LIMA – In the end, Kate Hoops overpowered the golf course and the result was a 4 and 3 win over good friend Sheridan Balyeat Sunday afternoon at the Shawnee Country Club.
Hoops claimed the title of the Lima Area Women’s Match Play Championship in a rematch of last year's championship, whicht saw Balyeat defeat Hoops 1-up in 19 holes.
It marked Hoops' second Lima Area Women's Match Play Championship.
The two battled back and forth over the front nine before Hoops won the ninth hole to take a 1-up lead going to the back nine.
Hoops had taken a 2-up lead after winning the first two holes before Balyeat, a junior at Ohio State, bounced back and won three holes in a row to grab a 1-up lead after five holes of play.
“I had seven good days of golf in a row but today just was not my day,” Balyeat said. “I did the best I could with how I was hitting it. We are good friends and I am happy for Kate.”
Hoops won the 10th hole to grab a 2-up lead and both made bogey at number 11. Hoops then birdied both 12 and 13 to expand the lead to 4-up with five holes to play.
Balyeat got back to within three holes when she won the 14th hole with a par.
The long hitting Hoops was hitting drives in the 280-yard range and had one 300-yard drive. She birdied No. 15 to close out the match. Hoops will be a senior at the University of Toledo this year.
“It was very back and forth, especially the front nine where I ended up with a 1-up lead,” Hoops said. “I figured out the driver after having a case of the lefts. We had fun and I made some birdies when I needed them.”
Hoops finished the day 1-under-par for the 15 holes of play.
In other flight action, Tamara Pope won the first flight with a 3 and 2 win over Joan Whittaker.
Connie Shutt bested Melissa Smiley 6 and 5 to grab the second flight title.
Marilee Bible took the third flight title with a 2 and 1 victory over Evelyn Lenski.