GAO Ontario Women's Amateur St. Thomas Golf & Country Club

Maddie Szeryk wins 100th Investors Group Ontario Women’s Amateur Championship

UNION— In a week that had a little bit of everything from unpredictable weather, to penalty strokes to the round-three leaders, things finally came to a conclusion at the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) Investors Group Women’s Amateur on July 10 at the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club, the 100th anniversary of the event.

Heading into the final round, Mono’s Brittany Marchand held a two-shot lead. However, it would be a lights-out performance by Maddie Szeryk that would be the final-round story as she shot a four-under (68) to overcome the deficit and hoist the Marlene Stewart-Streit Trophy.

Szeryk, a Canadian-American dual citizen, makes her home in Texas, where she also attends Texas A&M, but has family connections to London with her grandparents residing there. She is also a member of the Golf Canada National Team.

The 18-year-old Szeryk wasted little time in grabbing the lead. She birdied the first hole and then added three more on the fifth, sixth and eighth to lead at the turn. She was able to keep up her strong play on the back nine in order to take the win at seven-under for the tournament (73-70-70-68).

After the win, Szeryk spoke about what it meant to win the 100th Ontario Women’s Amateur. “It is a pretty big honour to win the 100th one, that is amazing!” Said Szeryk. “I came into the tournament hoping to play well and am really happy with the outcome. Coming into the tournament I knew it was a huge event and that it would mean a lot to win it. My family is from London, so to win here made it even better.”

When asked about what made the difference this week, Szeryk credited her play to having a solid all-round game. “It really was everything. I was focused on each shot, playing my plan and hitting the right shots. Today was really solid.”

Sharing the silver medal were Marchand and Victoria, British Columbia’s Naomi Ko. Marchand, the National Team and Brampton Golf Club member had her struggles during the final round and just couldn’t find her consistency. She finished the day one-over (73) and four-under for the Tournament (69-73-69-73).

As for Ko, she got off to a hot start with back-to-back birdies on the first two holes. She was able to get to three-under for the day before the turn but gave one stroke back with a bogey on the tenth. Despite her best efforts, she was unable to make a run at the top spot and had to settle for a share of second with a final round two-under (70) and four-under for the tournament. (71-68-75-70).

Based on their results, Marchand, Toronto’s Elizabeth Tong and Ottawa’s Grace St-Germain all move on to represent Ontario, in the inter-provincial competition, at the Canadian Women’s Amateur, July 28-31, at the Riverside Country Club in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

For full final results see the tournament site:

The GAO would like to thank the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club, their staff and members for hosting the event. A big thanks go to Tournament Chair Jim Waite and his 100 volunteers for all of their hard work throughout the week. Thanks also to all of the GAO volunteers and title sponsor Investors group for their continued support of golf in Ontario.

About the Investors Group Women’s Amateur

First played in 1904, the Investors Group Ontario Women’s Amateur Championship is being contested for the 100th time this summer, and for the second time at the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club. Past champions include 1968 LPGA championship winner Sandra Post (1964), LPGA Tour players Alena Sharp (1999) and Rebecca Lee-Bentham (2007), Brooke Henderson (2014) and World Golf Hall of Fame member Marlene Stewart Streit, who holds the record for the most number of titles with 11.

GAO Ontario Women's Amateur St. Thomas Golf & Country Club

100th Women’s Amateur Champions Dinner

On July 6, the Golf Association of Ontario and the St. Thomas Golf & Country Club hosted past Ontario Women’s Amateur Champions for the traditional Champions Dinner, the night before the opening round. The dinner featured guest speaker LPGA Tour member Rebecca-Lee Bentham, two Wall of Recognition recipients (Karin Mundinger and Ann Carroll) and a historical look at 100 Years of the Ontario Women’s Amateur.

100 Years of the Ontario Women’s Amateur

Photos from the Champions Dinner

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GAO Senior Men's Better Ball St. Thomas Golf & Country Club

Sandy Billyard and Michael Jackson capture 2014 Sr. Men’s Better Ball title

ST. THOMAS— As the Golf Association of Ontario’s (GAO) season comes to an end, the final senior men’s event took place on Sept. 11 at the St. Thomas Golf and Country Club. There were 55 teams of senior men, 55-years-old and over, that took to the course in damp, fall-like conditions for the Senior Men’s Better Ball Championship.

With many great teams taking part, it meant there would be many great scores. By the end of the day there were 16 under par in total. None was greater than that of Collingwood’s Michael Jackson and Welland’s Sandy Billyard who posted the low round at seven-under (65). The difference for the duo came on the ninth hole when Billyard, from Hunters Pointe Golf Course, hit a hole-in-one on the par three.

“It really seemed to get us going,” said Jackson. “Up until then we had made eight straight pars. Sandy played a great round of golf today.”

That seemed to galvanize the team as they went on to play the back nine five-under and finished the day seven-under (65).

“Number nine was the nicest shot I hit all day!” said Billyard. “It was a four-iron, 180 yards up hill. It landed just in the right spot and rolled in like a putt. Mike made a clutch birdie on 17 and that was the winner for us.”

It is the first time that either Jackson, Georgian Bay Club, or Billyard have won the Senior Men’s Better Ball title.

“The win means a lot to me because I haven’t won a provincial event since 1973,” added Billyard. “I’m thrilled! For Mike it is just another notch in his belt.”

“It is always nice to win a tournament but it was especially nice to win with Sandy. We didn’t make a bogey all day and just played a solid game,” said Jackson.

Finishing second was a team from the host St. Thomas Golf & Country Club, Stephen Brodie and John Scott. The two used their hometown knowledge of the course to their advantage finishing six-under (66).

Rounding out the top five was a tie for third between three teams. Richard Evoy (Sault Ste. Marie Golf Club) & Tom Hossfeld (Hylands Golf Club), Ian Montgomery (Weston Golf & Country Club) & Richard Lockwood (London Hunt and Country Club) and Kerry Short & Les Westlake (St. Catharines Golf and Country Club) all ended the day at three under (69).

For the final leaderboard see the tournament site at:

The Senior Men’s Better Ball Championship was first contested in 1982. The trophy was donated by the Oakdale Golf & Country Club, who annually host the GAO’s Men’s Better Ball Championship. Notable champions include Ontario Golf Hall of Famers Nick Westlock and Stu Hamilton. 2014 marks the first year that St. Thomas Golf & Country Club has hosted the event. The GAO would like to thank St. Thomas Golf & Country Club for their support of amateur golf in Ontario.