40th Burley Belles to tee off next week

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By Lee Kendall

Nearly 100 ladies golfers are expected to tee it up next week in the 40th annual Burley Belles Golf Tournament at the Cynthiana Country Club.

The two-day 36-hole stroke-play tournament will get under way on Wednesday and will conclude on Thursday. The festivities will begin on Tuesday with a practice round for the 2008 participants, followed by a potluck dinner at 6 p.m.

The Burley Belles is one of the longest running womens tournaments in the state and annually attracts some of the best golfers in the state.

Thirteen-time winner and defending champion, Anne Combs will return once again. Also in the field will be nine-time winner Cynthia Powell, five-time winner Marsha Bordas and three-time winner Laurie Goodlett.

Harrison County High School junior Polly Whalen will be the only local player in the Championship Flight this year. This summer, she has won both junior tournaments that she has played in on the Pepsi Tour in her age group.

Also in the Championship Flight will be Ann French Thomas, Kristin Lottman, Maggie Watts and Sami Montgomery-Wilson.

Counting Whalen, there will be 10 local entrants in this years tournament.

Teresa Davis and Kelly Kendall will play in the First Flight. Barbara Snopek, Layne McIlvain, Vicky Moore and Donna Jacobs will compete in the Second Flight. Helen McNees, Kay Cox and Bonnie Whalen will tee it up in the Third Flight.

Right now we have a field of over 80 golfers that are certain entrants and we expect more than that will sign up over the next few days, said tournament chairperson Betsy Coblentz on Tuesday night. We are pleasantly surprised with the number of entrants we have this year.

In the last few years the tournament was played on the weekend, making it much more manageable for working women. But with the Fourth of July holiday falling on the weekend, the tournament committee was forced to move the competition to the middle of the week.

The golf course is in excellent condition, particularly the greens, said golf course superintendent Mike Lenox earlier this week. It is a course that the veteran golfers know very well, but we want to make sure that it is challenging and fair for them. We will have the course in good shape for the tournament.