Golfers travel to Monterey Peninsula
The Sonoma Valley Golf Club ventured away from their home course of Eagle Vines in Napa and travelled a few hours to the south to the beautiful Monterey Peninsula for rounds at the Bayonet course at Fort Ord and Poppy Hills Golf Course.
The difficult Bayonet course, which has hosted PGA Tour Qualifying school multiple times, saw the members that made the trip play a net better ball format. Leading the way in the First Flight was the team of Wayne Petersen and Bill Seim who paired to fire an impressive round of 63. Close on their heels was Mike Alberigi and Jim Schnabel with a 63, while Jun Jasareno and Mac Bautista grabbed third with a 68. Harry Tistle and Barry Robertson’s 69 was good enough for fourth while Susie Alberigi and Kathie Schnabel showed the women came to play with their round of 70 and fifth place.
The Second Flight belonged to Wayne Coronel and Ron Macaluso with their round of 62. Bob Ford and Jerry Kilbert’s 65 was good enough for second place while 69 proved to be a popular score, with 3 teams firing that number; when the dust settled, the scorecard playoff gave Herb Seidell and Michael Lipson third, while Dan Radke and Pete Lavault took home fourth and Marc Sylvester and Ron Macaluso (blind draw) rounded out the top-five.
In closest to the pin action, Bob Park was the best of the day on number four with his shot to 64’-5.” Coronel’s shot to 23’-3” was good enough on the sixth hole while Jasareno hit the shot of the day on the 14th, to just 3’-2.” Sylvester enjoyed the downhill 17th hole, with a shot to 14’-10.”
When the group travelled into the Del Monte Forest and the Poppy Hills Golf Course, the format changed to a team stableford format. The First Flight saw Tistle and Tom Reynolds defy their combined 176 years and garner 47 points. Two-points in arrears was Alberigi and Schnabel, as they picked up their second runner-up finish of the trip. Another card-off was required as once again, three teams tied with 42 points, with Robertson and Sylvester garnering third while Petersen and Seim took fourth and Bob Park and Leon Valle fifth. In the Second Flight, Coronel and Macaluso picked up their second win in as many days with a 47-point total. Lipson and Seidell didn’t need a card-off this time and took home second with 44 points, while Jack Powers and John Fanucchi’s 43 point total was good enough for third. Rounding out the top-five was Radke and LaVault and Kit Wood and Leo McMillan with their 41 point totals. With five par-3s, players had an extra chance to grab a closest to the pin award. On the second, Saibene’s shot to 16’-5” was good enough for a win, while Bautista liked the sixth hole with his shot to 15’-3.” Lou Pignati conquered the tricky 11th hole with a shot to 31’-1” while Schnabel finally got a win after five second-place finishes in the two days with a closest to the pin on number 15 with a shot to 20’-5.” The 17th saw the best shot of the day, with Coronel firing his shot to 5’-7.”
Chicago will see its biggest sports event in many years when the Ryder Cup gets underway this morning. The bi-annual event between the United States and Europe will be played at the Medinah Country Club on the outskirts of the “Windy City.” Europe will look to take home the cup for the second straight year, but has not won it on U.S. soil since a dominant performance in 2004 at Oakland Hills Golf Club in suburban Detroit. This year sees both teams come in with a wealth of talent, many of which are firing on all cylinders, with Europe’s Rory McIlroy coming off a stretch of golf that saw him win the PGA Championship and two of the FedEx Cup playoff events, eventually finishing in second-place in the FedEx Cup. The U.S. will have newly crowned FedEx Cup Champion Brandt Snedeker riding a wave of confidence after an impressive win at the Tour Championship last weekend that netted him $11.4 million.
Despite his strong year, Snedeker had to rely on U.S. Captain Davis Love making him a captains’ pick, a decision now that looks like a great one. Tiger Woods also looks to help be on a winning U.S. Ryder Cup team for only the second time. Woods was on the 1999 squad that won at the Country Club outside Boston, but missed the only other U.S. win in recent years in 2008 in Kentucky as he was rehabbing his knee after surgery.
After a stint as an assistant captain in 2010 at Celtic Manor in Wales, Sergio Garcia has returned to the European side and looks to add to his impressive record in the event. One person who will not be there, but will play a huge role in the European team room, is Seve Ballesteros. European Captain Jose Maria Olazabal was Ballesteros’ partner in 1987, ’89, ’91, ’93 and ’95, compiling a dominant record that saw them lose only twice.
Olazabal has already alluded to the fact that Ballesteros will be on everyone’s mind and is in fact on every member of the European team’s golf bag, with a small silhouette of the great Spanish star adorning the front of each bag. Europe’s Luke Donald is in the unusual situation of being the outsider in his own city. Donald, originally from England, has lived in Chicago since his college days at Northwestern and is married to a woman from Chicago, but this week he will be sporting the blue and yellow of Europe.
With the teams so closely matched, this could be the most competitive Ryder Cup in recent memory, with a tie a very good possibility (which would have Europe retain the cup). As the weekend progresses, that march toward 14 points will become paramount, with some great golf and some spirited supporting, the 2012 Ryder Cup is sure to be another version of the biggest pressure cooker in golf.
Murphy’s Irish Pub’s 16th annual Bottomfeeders Open will take place Friday, Oct. 12, at Oakmont Golf Club’s West Course. For more information, stop by the pub or go to www.vintagehouse.org.