Gimpel prevails in Phila. match play final

Posted: July 21, 2013

Emily Gimpel did nothing to suggest that her golf game was in any way affected Friday by the near-100-degree temperature and the strength-sapping humidity.

The 21-year-old senior at the University of Maryland swung the club with such perfect tempo shot after shot in the scheduled 36-hole final of the Philadelphia Women's Match Play Championship that she ended the match early, defeating Kerry Rutan, 9 and 8, at Philadelphia Country Club.

Gimpel, a Mount St. Joseph's graduate playing out of Whitemarsh Valley Country Club, shot 2-under par in the morning round when she took an 8-up lead into lunch. She clinched the match on the 10th hole of the afternoon when Rutan, of Philadelphia Cricket Club, conceded her 3-foot par putt.

"The heat really doesn't bother me anymore," Gimpel said. "I practice in this all the time so I think it's to my advantage because I don't even think about it. I just have to stay hydrated out there, forget about the heat and play golf. I think mentally was the hardest part. It was such a long day and you're trying to stay focused for such a long time."

Gimpel, who has thoughts of a pro career after graduation next May, did most of her damage on the back nine of the first round, winning six of the holes, two with birdies.

"I really like the way the back nine sets up," she said. "I had a bunch of birdies and a couple of good sand saves which were really solid. It really was a good stretch for me."

For Rutan, who won the Philadelphia Girls Junior Championship in 1971 and 1972 as Kerry Rorer, it was the first time she had made it to the championship match in this event. Along the way, she eliminated 11-time champion Ann Laughlin and eight-time winner Laura Ladden.

"I was very happy getting to the finals," she said. "Emily could not have played better. She basically never missed a shot and her putting and chipping were excellent."

Rutan conceded that even though she enjoys playing in the heat, doing it for five straight days may have had an effect on her.

"I started feeling it on the ninth hole of the afternoon," she said. "Usually it doesn't bother me but I'm a little older than Emily, so there's a difference there."


Contact Joe Juliano

at jjuliano@phillynews.com. Follow @JoeJulesInq

on Twitter.

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