STUDIO CITY, Calif. (June 9, 2008) — When Lakeside Golf Club in Toluca Lake was announced as the match play site for the 97th California Amateur Championship, no one was more pleased than Tim Hogarth.
The state amateur, being held in Southern California for the first time, will take place June 16-21 with stroke-play rounds being played June 16 and 17 at Lakeside and Oakmont Country Club. Match play will begin June 18 at Lakeside and culminate with a 36-hole final match on Sat., June 21.
Hogarth is eagerly looking forward to playing at Lakeside. The 42-year-old Northridge resident isn’t a member of the venerable club but he might as well be. Hogarth has won the club’s prestigious Kelly Cup invitational (named for a two-winner of the California Amateur) six times, including the last four in a row.
That fourth title came in the silver anniversary playing of the Kelly Cup last month, a time span that also saw the 1999 California Amateur, 1996 U.S. Amateur Public Links and 2004 SCGA Amateur champion win his second consecutive Pasadena City Amateur title and advance to U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying.
Since then, however, Hogarth’s game has stagnated. He missed qualifying for the Open by two shots and then finished in a tie for second at the 91st Los Angeles City Amateur Championship, which finished last Sunday.
“You can’t win everything,” said Hogarth after the L.A. City. "But I’ve got a lot of work to do this week if I want to win the state. If it [the California Amateur] started tomorrow, I’d be in a lot of trouble.”
As is usual, Hogarth’s problems start with his putting.
“When I start going bad with the putter, it begins to affect other parts of my game, ” he said.
Things were so bad in the final round of the L.A. City at Rancho Park that when he missed an 18-inch putt birdie putt on the 15th hole, he broke his putter in frustration. On the next hole, he drained a 20-foot eagle putt while putting with his wedge (“that would have been quite a story if I’d won putting with a wedge”).
Hogarth will tee off at 8:40 a.m. on Monday (June 16), one of 78 golfers will play at Oakmont; the other half of the 156-man field will tee it up at Lakeside. The groups will switch courses on Tuesday, after which the match-play field of the 32 low scorers will be established.
The first round of match play will be Wednesday (June 18). The second round is on Thursday, quarterfinals and semifinals are on Friday and the 36-hole finale is scheduled for Saturday. All matches will be played at Lakeside.
Defending champion Josh Anderson of Murrieta is seeking to become the first player since Dr. Frank “Bud” Taylor in 1954-55 to win consecutive titles.
ROGER LAPHAM CHALLENGE CUP
The group playing Oakmont on Monday and Lakeside Tuesday will include the 12 players (six from Southern California and six from the north) whose scores will be counted for the annual North-South battle for the Roger Lapham Challenge Cup.
In addition to Hogarth and Anderson, the South team includes:
• Three-time SCGA Amateur runner-up Brian Edick of Valencia
• Last year's California Amateur runner-up Joe Greiner of Saugus
• Defending SCGA Amateur champion Brett Kanda of Glendale;
• Keith Kinsel of Glendale, who — like Kanda — is a member at Oakmont CC
The North team includes:
• Recently crowned NCGA Senior champion Jeff Burda of Modesto
• Former three-time NCGA Player of the Year Randy Haag of San Francisco, runner-up in this year’s San Francisco City Amateur
• Ryan Hallisey of Granite Bay, the 2007 NCGA Match Play champion
• Scott Hardy of Pleasant Hill, the NCGA Public Links champion and a semifinalist in the 2006 U.S. Mid-Amateur Championship (Hardy is also the St. Mary's College golf coach)
• Martin Trainer of Palo Alto, the 2008 San Francisco City champion (at age 17, the youngest player to win that title)
• Taylor Travis of Freemont, the 2008 NCGA Four-Ball champion (with Ryan Sloane) who will attend UCLA this fall.
The best five of six scores each day will count for the team total. The SCGA has won the last two years and holds a 12-6 lead since 1990 when the current stroke-play format began.