Trish Reperowitz was captain of the Western Hills Country Club team that captured the 2020 Greater Cincinnati Low Kent Memorial Tournament Low Net championship on its home course. At the time, she humbly credited at least part of the accomplishment to the familiarity of playing at home.
Reperowitz and her teammates this year – Barb Trotta, Jeanne Schoonever and Susan McBeth – didn’t have the comfort of home course advantage to fall back on this year, but it didn’t matter. Playing in the High Kent portion of the annual event on July19, at Four Bridges Country Club, they teamed up to win the Gross team title with a combined score of 177, finishing four strokes ahead of the team of Claire Martini, Nancy Sander, Diane Sundrup and Lynn Torbeck.
“We had a good day,” Reperowitz said. “We started out great. I had birdie-par-birdie on the first three holes. We started out on the back nine and did really well. We gave a few back on front nine. We were 6-under on the back nine and went 3-over on the front nine.
“I think we all played our better golf – all four of us. We were definitely able to trade off.” The team of Melissa Wink, Meghan Cole, Michelle Jones and Jen Stuhlreyer combined to capture the High Kent Net championship with a 136, four strokes ahead of the team of Holly Cassidy, Donna Harpsoe, Diane Stevens and Sandy Stuckert.
Wink couldn’t put a finger any specific aspect of her team’s game that led to their win. “Sometimes, you just have good days,” said Wink, who’s been playing golf for only five years. “I’ve been playing long enough that I should be better than I am. We got lucky. It was a fun, all-around tournament. We were just out there having a good time. Winning was a pleasant surprise.”
While they weren’t playing on their home course, Reperowitz and her teammates weren’t completely playing blind. Reperowitz previously had played Four Bridges and knew a few things about the course. “I had played the Crystal Bowl there last year,” she recalled. “Last year, I found so much water and creeks. This year, I paid more attention to the water and creeks. I was able to let the girls know where the water and creeks were. “It’s called Four Bridges, but I call it Four Bridges and a thousand creeks.” Wink’s team, which calls Kenwood Country Club home, leaned on consistency on its way to a title. “I would not be able to say anybody had a spectacular day,” she said.
The High Kent and its counterpart, the Low Kent, were created in the mid-1950s in honor of Mrs. Sydney B. Kent, and long-time Cincinnati Country Club and Women’s Western Golf Association board member who maintained in her life a keen interest in teaching ethics, courtesies and rules of the game to junior golfers. The tournament originally was a net best-ball foursome before evolving into flighted events at two different courses with gross and net prizes. Kathy Brockman is this year’s GCWGA tournament chairperson. Holly Jones is serving as the assistant tournament chairperson.
Reperowitz and her teammates actually had to grab the winner’s prize from the Miami View, which was mistakenly handed the awards during the post-tournament ceremony. “I had looked at the board, but the pro reversed the order when he transcribed it for the ceremony,” she said. “I was like, ‘Um, sorry, but …” Wink and her teammates were having lunch when they learned that they’d won as the Four Bridges pro posted the scores. “We were like, ‘Oh, look at that,’” Wink said.
By Mark Schmetzer
2021 LOW KENT TOURNAMENT
Nancy DeCenso parred her first hole at Losantiville Country Club on July 21 and jokingly was ready to call it a day. “She said, ‘I’m done for the day,’” and we were all like, ‘Noooo,’” teammate Holly Jones said. She and they were glad DeCenso were glad she stuck around to finish the round. Those two teamed up with Lynn Thompson and Allison Mayborg to the Low Gross title at this year’s Greater Cincinnati Women’s Golf Association Low Kent Memorial tournament.
The winning team combined to card a 145 at Losantiville Country Club, a week after rain forced postponement of the originally scheduled date. They won by a comfortable nine strokes over the second-place team of Lori Roberts, Linda Coffey, Vicki Felver and Hilda Hodges, which finished at 154. Jenny Haralamos, Julie Crouch, Connie Hillard and Fran Teller teamed up to finish third at 160.
Toni Soule, Traci Anderson, Tina Davis and Jody Rusche combined to log a winning Net score of 131, edging the 134 put together by the team of Diane Bizzarri, Nancy Vincent, Tracey Capuano and Deanna Hogenkamp. Soule served as captain for the team that included Davis, Soule’s twin. Those two and Anderson play out of Hamilton Elks, while Rusche calls the Elks and the Heritage Club home.
“We had a great team, and we needed all four players,” Rusche texted. “I was fortunate to be asked to play on this team. I think it was four years ago, so it felt good to win. They are all great, fun ladies.” Rusche and her team had to wait until of the others teams completed their rounds before the win was confirmed. The wait was worth it, she said. “You never really know if you win or place until all scores are posted,” she said. “We thought our score looked pretty good when we went to lunch. However, not all teams were finished, so we didn’t really know until they announced it, but we were extremely happy.”
The Low Kent and its counterpart, the High Kent, were created in the mid-1950s in honor of Mrs. Sydney B. Kent, a long-time Cincinnati Country Club and Women’s Western Golf Association board member who maintained in her life a keen interest in teaching ethics, courtesies and rules of the game to junior golfers. The tournament originally was a net best-ball foursome before evolving into flighted events at two different courses with gross and net prizes. Kathy Brockman is this year’s GCWGA tournament chairperson.
Jones, Thompson and DeCenso were part of the team that won the 2019 Low Kent Gross title before finishing second last season at Western Hills Country Club. Jones, this year’s GCWGA assistant tournament chairperson, couldn’t really pick out one outstanding trait displayed by her team on its way to regaining this year the top spot. “I just think we all played really well, and when we weren’t, others on the team were able to pick up the slack,” she said. “If one wasn’t playing well, the others were able to contribute. Allison had a pair of eagles on the front nine, which really helped. I just think we were pretty consistent. We used quite a bit of Nancy’s shots. Everybody contributed. We had some really great 30s throughout the day. The greens were really small, so we spent a huge part of the day trying to get below the pin.”
The week’s postponement had little impact on the event, Jones said. “A few teams weren’t able to make it after the rainout, and some other teams had to get creative in putting together teams,” she said. “I’m not sure how this affected the field and original teams,” Rusche said. “Thank goodness our entire team was able to make the rainout date.” Similarly, Losantiville seamlessly handled the delay. “The entire staff was welcoming,” Jones said. “The course was beautiful. I hadn’t played there since I was junior golfer. Everybody commented on how well it was groomed.”
“The course was in great shape, and their entire staff was very friendly and helpful,” Rusche added in an email. “Toni played exceptionally well, which really helped us out as the format was two best balls. As well as she played, we still needed two scores, so it was a team effort. Everyone contributed and that’s what it takes to win. “I think this is our fourth year playing as a team, so we were very excited to have won. I don’t know that I can speak for them as to if this is any of our biggest wins. However, any and every win is big,”
By Mark Schmetzer