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SMGA, SVGC stay busy on links of multiple NorCal courses

By By Richard Davison (Special to the Index-Tribune)

The Sonoma Men’s Golf Association conducted its annual Club Championship over the last couple of weeks, and although the championship flight has yet to decide a winner, the remaining flights all have a 2013 Champion.

On Saturday, Sept. 7, Ron Sharek defeated Don Roesh 3-and-2 in the first round of the Cabernet Flight, while Mike Lucas took down Jim Hybiske 2-and-1 to set up the final, which saw Sharek take home another championship with a 4-and-3 winning margin over Lucas.

The Chardonnay Flight saw John Bogardus take down Eric Biggs 3-and-1, while perennial contender Tom Martin outlasted John Ervin 3-and-1. In the final, Bogardus got the better of Martin with a 3-and-2 final score.

In the Zinfandel Flight, Kay Groft got the better of Karl Mayer 6-and-5, while Paul Groft set up an all Groft final by besting Jim Lybrand 1-up, with the final seeing Kay Groft defeat Paul 4-and-3 and was crowned the Zinfandel champion as well as Groft champion.

Myron Donesky outdueled Jack Harding 4-and-2 in the Championship Flight, while Nick Blonder sent Steve Lanning packing with a score of 2-and-1. Donesky and Blonder will duel this Sunday, Sept. 22, at Windsor Golf Club for that title.

The SMGA returns to action Sunday, Oct. 6, at Rio Vista Golf Club.

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Sonoma Men’s Golf Association members Eric Biggs, Ron Sharek and Al Rappoport played well enough recently at Mare Island to qualify for the Associate Club Net Amateur to be played at Quail Lodge Golf Club in Carmel Valley from Sunday, Sept. 29, through Tuesday, Oct. 1.

This is the first group from the SMGA to have made it to the Northern California Golf Association’s associate event in many years.

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The Sonoma Valley Golf Club has also been in action lately, with two events at Rancho Solano in Fairfield and its home club of Eagle Vines in Napa, respectively.

At Rancho Solano the club played a 3-better-ball event, with the winners combining the low 3-scores on each hole out of the foursome.

In the first flight, Bud Schuerman gathered up his band of merry men, Ron Hodges, Ron Sharek and Gregg Warren, and took home first place with a score of 197, which was 11 shots ahead of Jerry VanWallinga, John Long, Dave Voepel and Bob Jaeger and their 208 total. Two teams coming registered a  213 score, before a card-off saw Dick Moore, Bob Leal, Al Marty and El Delagnes take home third place and Marc Sylvester, Michael Lipson, Dan Stites and Herb Seidell settle for fourth, and rounding out the top five were Deby Braun, Tom Braun, Russ Hurley and Jim Schnabel with a 223.

In the second flight, Jack Powers, John Fanucchi, Jack Doss and Ed Cebula walked away with first place after firing a 208 total, followed by  Jack Nisson, John Murphy, Tom Culligan and Hank Martinson combining for a 223 and second. Joe Valls, Magnus Carlsson, Gerry Orme and Bill Rosa had to settle for third after matching with a 223 score, only to lose in a card-off, with Don Richards, Jack Kearney, Kit Wood and Tom Reynolds finishing fourth at 228, and Lou Pignati, Ron Macaluso, Charley Avery and Harry Tistle ending in fifth with a 231.

In closest-to-the-pin action from the white tees, Carlsson had no trouble with the uphill fifth hole, firing his shot to 23 feet, 2 inches, while Ross Martin liked the eighth hole, his ball stopping 24 feet away. The long and difficult 12th has seen many players dump their ball in the lake fronting the green, but Mac Bautista didn’t have to worry about that, his ball coming up 12-10 from the hole, while the short 15th was kind to Tom Braun, as his ball stopped 20-5 from the cup.

Playing from the green tees, Schuerman showed why he was a winner, his ball finishing 26-3 from the fifth hole, while Ed Cebula knocked it to 6-9 on the downhill eighth. Nisson conquered the 12th with his shot to 14-1, while Gregg Warren didn’t walk away empty handed with a shot to 16-10 on the 15th.

Back at Eagle Vines, Barry Robertson ruled the first flight with his round of 73, with both Ron Hodges and Dale Charles matching scores of 74, before Hodges got the nod for second in a card-off.

The second flight saw Ed Cebula return to his winning ways with a fine round of 67, while one-shot back in second place was Wayne Coronel with his 68, as Bob Leal’s 69 gave him third.

Don Richards took the top spot in the third flight with his 69, while Tom Reynolds grabbed second with a 70 and Mel McPherson took the last podium position with his round of 72.

Closest-to-the-pin saw competitors play from the white, gold or red tees, and from the whites, Charles shot to 14 feet, 9 inches on the island-green sixth hole which was good enough for a win, while no one was able to find the eighth green.

Jack Powers walked away a winner on the 12th hole with a shot to 11-3; meanwhile, on the 15th, Jim Schnabel’s graceful southpaw swing nestled a shot to 8-9.

The gold tees saw Al Marty conquer the sixth with a shot to 10 feet, while Greg Warren found the green on the eighth with a shot to 23-1.

Cebula found his groove again on the 12th with a shot to 6-11, while a shot to 7-3 was good enough for Warren on the 15th.

Pete Lavault made short work of the sixth from the red tees, his ball coming to rest just 5-7 from the hole.

El Delagnes had his shot stop 30-8 from the hole on the eighth, which was good enough for the win.

Pete Lavault avoided the water on the 12th with a shot to 18-2 and Gerry Orme’s shot to 10-2 on the 15th turned out to be the best of the day.

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The Sonoma Golf Club will host the 27th annual B.R. Cohn Celebrity Golf Classic taking place this Monday, Sept. 23, with the scramble format event starting with an 8 a.m. registration, followed by a 10 a.m. tee-off. For more details or to sign up, go to brcohn.com.