Southern California (SCGA) Amateur Championship

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA (June 29, 2005) -- Defending champion Tim Hogarth of Northridge and newly crowned California Amateur champion Don DuBois of Newport Beach head a field of 84 golfers who will tee it up in the 106th Southern California Golf Association (SCGA) Amateur Championship July 8-10 at Tijeras Creek Golf Course in Rancho Santa Margarita. This will be just the fourth time that the SCGA’s premiere championship — the nation’s second-oldest, continuously contested amateur golf championship — will be played at a public course. Tijeras Creek GC is the home course of SCGA President Bill Cunerty, who is also the golf coach at Saddleback College in nearby Mission Viejo. It’s also just the fourth time that the tournament has been held in Orange County; the last one was in 1995 when Charlie Wi won at Santa Ana CC.

The 72-hole stroke play event will include 36 holes on Friday, followed by a cut to the low 42 scorers and ties. That group will play 18 holes each on Saturday and Sunday. Tee times begin at 7:30 a.m. each day. Gallery is welcome at no charge. The 39-year-old Hogarth is seeking to become just the sixth player in history to successfully defend his title, which he won last year at Hillcrest CC in Los Angeles with a 1-under-par 279. That victory also completed a unique “triple crown,” as Hogarth became the first player ever to win the SCGA Amateur, SCGA Mid- Amateur (1999) and California Amateur (1999) championships.

To win again, Hogarth will have to turn back a strong field that starts with DuBois, the 46-year-old former professional who last week became the second-oldest player ever to capture the California Amateur when he defeated 17-year-old Joseph Bramlett of Saratoga, 2 & 1, in the 36-hole championship match at Pebble Beach Golf Links. DuBois finished tied for ninth at Hillcrest last year.

Other veteran players of note scheduled to play are: • Craig Steinberg, 47, of Oak Park, still chasing that elusive fifth SCGA Amateur title after winning four times in a 10-year-span. Steinberg is one of three players ever to win four SCGA Amateur titles; should he win another, he’d join Paul Hunter as the only five-time winner. • Scott McGihon, 37, of Bermuda Dunes, the 2000 SCGA Amateur and 2004 Trans-Mississippi Mid-Amateur champion, who was a quarterfinalist at last week’s California Amateur. McGihon, a middle school teacher and high school golf coach in the Coachella Valley, was runner-up to Hogarth last year. • Ed Cuff, 43, of Rancho Santa Fe (he recently moved from Murrieta), the 1998 California Amateur champion and 2002 SCGA Mid-Amateur runner-up (to McGihon). • John Pate, 45, of Santa Barbara, who won the centennial playing of this event in 1999 at Industry Hills and last week lost a 1-up-quarterfinal match to DuBois at the California Amateur. Pate, the 2000 SCGA Mid- Amateur champion, is the brother of six-time PGA Tour winner Steve Pate.

Several younger players will likely challenge Hogarth, as well, including: • Recent USC graduate Nico Bollini of Yorba Linda, the 2002 SCGA Amateur champion; • Joshua Warthen of Pismo Beach (and San Diego State), the 2003 Southern California Community College champion; • Kevin Kim of Jamul, who won this year’s California Community College individual championship playing for SCGA President at Bill Cunerty. Earlier in the spring, he won the 2005 Rancho Santa Margarita Amateur, which was played at Tijeras Creek GC; • Brett Kanda of La Crescenta, this year’s CIF-SCGA High School Southern Regional champion; • Cameron Tringale of Laguna Niguel, who was runner-up to Kanda in the Southern Regional and finished 14th in the state tournament. Throughout its rich history, the SCGA Amateur has been won by some of the greatest golfers in history, including George Von Elm, Johnny Dawson, Bruce McCormick, Al Geiberger and, in 1994, Tiger Woods, who set single-round (62) and 72-hole (270) scoring records winning at Hacienda GC. Equally impressive are those who tried and failed to win the title, including such professional major winners as Craig Stadler, Corey Pavin, Scott Simpson, Mark O’Meara and Phil Mickelson.

Founded in 1899, the Southern California Golf Association is one of the oldest and largest regional golf associations in the world, with more than 155,000 individuals who belong to more than 1,100 clubs in Southern California and Baja California. Among its many services, the SCGA provides handicap indexes for its members; uses its own state-of-the-art handicap computer system at all clubs in Southern California; provides course ratings and Slope ratings for all clubs in the association; publishes FORE Magazine, an award-winning, four-color bimonthly publication for members; publishes the annual Southern California Directory of Golf; runs one of the most dynamic golf web sites in the world; and conducts 13 championships and dozens of qualifying events for itself and the United States Golf Association.

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