BATH — Somehow, the back nine holes agreed with Kristin Kannegieser.

After laboring through the front nine Tuesday in the second round of the Women’s Maine State Golf Association Championship, Kannegieser birdied the par-4 10th hole, and remained consistent until she bogeyed two of the final three holes at Bath Country Club.

The extra shots barely discouraged Kannegieser, who golfs out of Martindale Country Club in Auburn.

Entering today’s final round, Kannegieser leads the field of 61 golfers with a 151, two strokes ahead of Mary Brandes of the Woodlands.
“Once I started getting on the flag and leaving them tap-ins for par, birdies, definitely, I had a lot of confidence,” said Kannegieser, who shot a 4-over-par 74 on Monday and a 77 on Tuesday. “That definitely changed things. I hit more fairways. That energized me. On the front I kept kind of thinking, ‘hang in there, and get to a new back and start again.’ So to start off with a birdie on the back was nice.”
Kannegieser had Tuesday’s low score, despite a handful of bogeys on the front nine.

“Anything on the front, I struggled there,” Kannegieser said. “I just bogeyed, bogey, bogey, bogey. Either I hit a good drive and not a good approach, and then when I did I missed some putts. But I didn’t take any real high numbers. I was able to keep getting bogeys. A lot of the pin placements were really challenging.”

Kannegieser, Brandes and Debby Gardner will be the final threesome to tee off at 10:30 a.m. today in the final round. Gardner and Leslie Guenther are tied for third at 158.

“Unfortunately I wasn’t hitting my driver well,” said Brandes, who shot a 72 on Monday and an 81 on Tuesday. “I was putting all right but you can’t make them from 50 feet.”

Brandes shot a 41 on the front nine, including triple bogeys on the second and eighth holes, and shot over par on five holes on the back nine, including a double-bogey on the par-4 14th.

“I can play well,” Brandes said of today’s final round. “If I can just keep my drive in the fairways, I will do fine.

“Playing with Kristin and Leslie, they have such consistent games and that puts a little pressure on you to just try to be a little more perfect, and it’s not a good way to play golf. But they played great.”

Guenther, who will golf with Cecily Whiting (160) and Jennifer Weiland (161) in today’s final round, made par on all but two holes on the back nine.

Guenther double-bogeyed the 15th and needed eight strokes to complete the par-3 16th – a 74-yard hole that was separated by a water trap – hitting her first two shots out of bounds on the hole.

“It wasn’t for her as much a bad shot as it was a little bad judgment in the club she used,” Brandes said. “She played it too aggressive a shot for that hole. But she didn’t miss the shot.”

Now, in the lead, Kannegieser will take one thing from her first two days at Bath Country Club into today’s final round.

“Be patient,” Kannegieser said. “I fought it on the front to be patient. I just felt like it was slipping away from me. Be patient. Try to take what the course gives you. A couple of the holes on the front, there are a lot of hazards, but be patient, and try to enjoy myself.

Staff Writer Rachel Lenzi can be contacted at 791-6415 or at:
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