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River Pointe back on top after Challenge Cup victory

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

ALBANY -- There's a new Cup champion in town.

No, it's not the Spanish men's soccer team, and no, it's not the World Cup.

River Pointe Golf Club won the 2010 Challenge Cup this past weekend at Stonebridge Golf & Country Club, beating out the nearest club by 12 strokes.

The tournament, which started in 1998, featured a four-ball format on Saturday and four-man scramble Sunday.

River Pointe was tied with Grand Island Golf Club at 344 after the first day, but pulled away the final round to take its third Challenge Cup championship in club history -- they last won in 2002 and 2007 -- with a score of 660.

"It's a fun thing," said Buster Clark, the head pro at River Pointe. "It's all about getting all these guys in town and playing. Stonebridge dominated this thing for a while, (so it's good we got a chance to win it)."

While Doublegate easily won the tournament last year against a field that included former PGA pro Sonny Skinner, River Pointe cruised this year thanks largely to strong effort from a team comprised of Spencer Ferrell and Blake Canton.

Ferrell, who was The Herald's co-Player of the Year for boy's golf and is going to Darton this year, and Canton, a former Darton player and coach, scored a 59 the final day, the best score of the tournament.

"It feels awesome (to get the championship)," Clark said. "Any time you win, it feels pretty good to come on top, especially against (the other clubs), because you all know each other. It's more of a pride thing."

Grand Island finished with a score of 672, while Stonebridge and Doublegate scored 673 and 685, respectively. Each of the four clubs had six teams of two players -- a total of 48 participants.

"We always have a good turnout," Clark said.

The next major tournament on River Pointe's schedule is at the end of August, when it hosts the River Pointe Summer Four-Ball.