Incoming Tider Wins Canadian Event

Alabama incoming freshman golfer Jennifer Kirby earned her first national victory with a win at the Royale Cup Canadian Women's Amateur Championship shooting a 6-under-par 282 on the par-72, 6,239 yard Royal Oaks Estates and Golf Club in Moncton, New Brunswick Canada.

Kirby, a native of Paris, Ontario, shot three rounds of par or better including a dazzling 66 (-6) in the second round to help her top the 117 player field and claim the title. She played bogey-free golf in round two with four birdies and one eagle.

Entering the final round, Kirby found herself in second place, two strokes behind her teammate on the Canadian National Amateur Team Sue Kim at (-7). Kirby made her move on the front nine of the fourth round, shooting 33 (-3) with an eagle on the seventh hole, compared to her opponents 39 (+3) to take a commanding four stroke lead at the turn. She held off a late push by Kim on the back nine to earn the victory by one stroke.

"This is the biggest event I've ever won and it feels amazing," Kirby told the Royale Canadian Golf Association. "I got a little nervous on the last hole, and when I get nervous I play a little quick. But my caddie and my Team Canada coaches did a great job of keeping me calm."

Kirby took advantage of the course's four par-fives all week long, shooting nine-under par on Royal Oaks's longest holes. With the win, Kirby earns her first exemption into the 2009 CN Canadian Women's Open to be held Aug. 31 - Sept. 6 at Priddis Greens in Calgary, Alberta.

Kirby will join Coach Mic Potter and the Alabama women's golf team for the 2009-10 season and should contend for early playing time. The Crimson Tide return five lettermen, including four of the starters from the 2009 NCAA Championships team that finished 11th, losing senior All-America Kathleen Ekey.

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