In the end, Andrea Kraus's veteran grit triumphed over Jessica Lewis's youthful scrappiness.
Kraus, of Woodholme Country Club, defeated Lewis of Columbia Country Club, 2 and 1, yesterday in the final of the 78th annual Maryland State women's division amateur championships at Argyle Country Club.
Kraus, a 38-year-old who won the title in 1994, had dominated the tournament, beginning with her course-record 4-under-par 69 in the stroke play qualifier on Tuesday. But Lewis, a recent St. Andrew's School graduate who turned 18 only a week ago, kept pressure on her throughout the match.
"Jessica gave me my best match of the week," Kraus said.
It didn't look as if it would be much of a match early on. Lewis bogeyed the first two holes, putting Kraus 2 up.
But Lewis showed remarkable tenacity. After she and Kraus birdied the next hole, Lewis made pars on Nos. 4 and 5 to put the match back at even. Kraus, who hit great iron shots all day, struggled with her putting and bogeyed those holes.
"I just started to feel more confident," Lewis said. "I didn't give up."
Lewis kept making pars, while Kraus's putting problems continued. Lewis went 1 up after Kraus three-putted on No. 9.
"I had so many birdie opportunities that really could have closed out this match if I would have made a couple of them, but I left them all short," Kraus said. "I was tentative. . . . Nerves factored in a little bit."
After trailing the match at the turn, Kraus's resolve seemed to solidify. She hit every fairway and missed only one green on the next eight holes. Kraus made five consecutive pars, but not without some tense moments. On No. 13, she nailed a tricky 40-foot chip shot that dropped in the hole to save par.
"I decided I wasn't going to let this get away from me," Kraus said. ". . . I got a little tougher."
Accustomed to playing shorter junior tournaments, Lewis began to wear down on the back nine. She bogeyed three consecutive holes to lose her lead.
"I started getting tired," Lewis said. "I have not played this much golf in one week in a long time."
* VIRGINIA WOMEN'S AMATEUR: Mimi Hoffman of Alexandria rallied from two shots down after eight holes and defeated Chris Epperly of Newport News, 2 and 1, to win at Glenrochie Country Club in Abingdon, Va.
Hoffman, who defeated defending champion Lee Shirley, 3 and 1, in the semifinals Thursday, got back to even against Epperly by the 10th hole in the championship match and went ahead with a par at No. 11.
Hoffman clinched the victory at the 17th hole, sinking a four-foot putt for par to halve the hole after Epperly had also made par.
* VIRGINIA STATE OPEN: Wearing a lucky yellow shirt for the second day in a row, Faber Jamerson shot a 4-under-par 68 for a 36-hole total of 134 and a commanding seven-shot lead at the halfway mark in Williamsburg.
This year's State Amateur winner, 19-year-old Steve Marino of Fairfax, had a 71 for 146.