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Paynesville Press - August 23, 2006

Fuchs, Mackedanz win titles at Koronis Hills

By Michael Jacobson

Heather Fuchs and Mitchell Mackedanz won their second club titles at Koronis Hills Golf Course on Sunday. Fuchs claimed her second women's title by one stroke, and Mackedanz won the men's title for the second straight year.

Ten men, seven women, and four seniors played in their respective championship flight on Sunday. The championship tournaments were stroke play over 27 holes, with players playing the front, back, and front again. Murry Rafferty won his first senior's title on Sunday.

Mackedanz, who plays collegiately at Bemidji State University, made a long birdie putt on his first hole to jump to the early lead. He made another birdie (#3) and seven pars in his opening nine holes to take a six-shot lead at the turn over Dave Johnson (40) and Randy Beier (40).

Mackedanz held the lead until the final two holes on the back nine. While Beier and Johnson both played the back nine in one over par (36), Mackedanz scored a double bogey on #17 and a quadruple bogey (with three penalty strokes) on #18.

Mackedanz said he was frustrated from what he thought was a good chip on #17, which hit the seam between the green and rough and kicked toward the water, resulting in a double bogey. When he hit his drive into the woods on #18, he broke the shaft of his driver out of frustration, a move that he called "stupid," especially with nine holes still to play.

Entering the final nine holes, Beier (76) and Johnson (76) shared the lead with Mackedanz (78) and Zach Fuchs (78) two shots back.

Hitting three wood off the tee, though, Mackedanz hit his 100-yard approach shot to two feet on #1 and almost drove the green on #2, two-putting for another birdie, tying Beier for the lead, which Beier had taken with a par on #1.

The back-and-forth final nine had Mackedanz take the lead after #3, tied with Johnson after #4, and in the lead again after #5. Johnson took the lead with a birdie on #6, but Mackedanz tied for the lead after #8 with Beier one stroke back.

On the 27th hole, Mackedanz hit his tee shot down the left side by the small pine trees and chipped to three feet for birdie, claiming his second club championship by three strokes over Beier and Johnson.

Zach Fuchs finished fourth, while Ryan Haagenson shot 39 on the final nine to finish fifth and Lee Landsteiner shot 37 on the final nine to finish sixth.

"I hit the ball pretty good," said Mackedanz, "except for those two holes on the back."

He hasn't putted very well all summer, he added, but got early momentum by making that long birdie putt on the first hole, as well as good par putts on #4 and #5 on his first nine.

For the day, Mackedanz played the front nine (twice) in one under par, while he played the back nine in nine over par. "The back nine was a struggle," he said.

Had the tournament been played on the back nine twice and the front nine only once, it might have been a different ending, he acknowledged.

Mackedanz became the 19th golfer at Koronis Hills to win multiple men's championships. He also was the first back-to-back winner since Gordy Pederson (1982-84).

Fuchs also won her second women's title at Koronis Hills, having previously won the women's title in 2003. By one stroke, she ended RaNae Martinson's two-year reign as club champion and denied Martinson her eighth women's title.

After 18 holes, Fuchs was tied with Denise Landsteiner at 85, but she took a three-stroke lead with pars on #3 and #4 on the final nine.

Martinson, who trailed by three entering the final nine, playing in the group behind Fuchs, parred the last four holes with Fuchs making two pars (on #7 and #8) and two bogeys to win by a stroke, edging Martinson 126-127.

Landsteiner (129) finished three strokes back.

Fuchs became the 11th female golfer to win multiple club titles at Koronis Hills. Nothing was very spectacular about her round, she said, just solid golf, with a few long drives being the highlight.

"It was fun," she said. "I wasn't really expecting to win; I just thought it would be fun to play again."

All four players in the senior men's championship were in the hunt for the title. With six holes to play, John Janotta led by one stroke with Mike Atkinson, Rafferty, and Tony Werlinger all tied. Over the final six holes, though, Rafferty made five pars and one bogey to win by three strokes over Atkinson, last year's winner. Werlinger finished four strokes back, and Janotta five.

Rafferty, the 1996 men's titleist, won his first senior title.

Flight play for the club championship was match play, with golfers playing the back, front, and back.

Men's Championship (10 players)
1) Mitchell Mackedanz 34-44-37 = 115
2) Dave Johnson 40-36-42 = 118
Randy Beier 40-36-42 = 118
4) Zach Fuchs 41-37-42 = 120
5) Ryan Haagenson 41-42-39 = 122
6) Lee Landsteiner 43-43-37 = 123

Women's Championship (7 players)
1) Heather Fuchs 44-41-41 = 126
2) RaNae Martinson 41-47-39 = 127
3) Denise Landsteiner 43-42-44 = 129

Men's Senior Championship (4 players)
1) Murry Rafferty 39-40-40 = 119
2) Mike Atkinson 42-40-40 = 122
3) Tony Werlinger 43-37-43 = 123
4) John Janotta 40-40-44 = 124

Men's First Flight
First Bryan Mara
Second Steve Barten
Consolation Randy Schoenberg

Men's Second Flight
First Chuck Hagen
Second Keith Hemmesch
Consolation Kirk Johnson

Senior Men's First Flight
First Buddy Beier
Second Virg Vagle
Consolation Jerry Hunt

Senior Men's Second Flight
First Roger Dreyling
Second Don Anderson
Consolation Dan Deadrick

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