Golf: Sanchez, Schmitt finish 9th in ESPN national tournament

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By Mike Cote

Local golfers Eddie Sanchez and Barbara Schmitt tied for ninth place in the Senior Division of the National ESPN Golf Challenge in Las Vegas, Nev.
Sanchez and Schmitt competed in the tournament Oct. 22-23. In all, 36 two-person teams competed for the Senior Division crown. Senior Division play used net scoring.
All the participants in the tournament reached the national tournament by qualifying earlier in local and regional events.
The tournament was played at Paiute Golf Resort.
Schmitt, a top local golfer, was the only woman contestant in the entire field.
“It was a great tournament, with all you could eat and drink and lots of gifts for everyone,” Schmitt said. “But I found it quite painful to have to play from the same tees as the men. Frankly, I thought it was particularly inequitable because if there had been any younger women in the tournament, the rules allowed them to play from approximately 6,100 yards as compared to about 6,800 for the under-55 men. Senior women, however, were required to play from the same tees as the senior men and I’m still trying to understand that logic.”
Playing with less than 75 percent of their regular handicaps, Sanchez and Schmitt shot 6 under par for the two days.
Sanchez played with a 3-stroke handicap and shot 72 and 74 gross in the two rounds of the tournament.  
“Barbara had to play the relief route, because she couldn’t manage shots over difficult hazards on many of the holes,” Sanchez said. “So, really, she was playing about 6,800 yards.”  
Reaching only one hole in regulation over 36 holes of play, Schmitt birdied that hole for her biggest contribution to the team’s score. Overall she was responsible for two strokes of their six strokes under.
Both Schmitt and Sanchez said they were very proud to have made the national field.