CARMEL, Calif. (October 22, 2010) - Under persistent mist and light rain, the 2010 Stocker Cup's second round was contested Friday at the Preserve Golf Club.
Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky's Brad Wilder, 31, threatened to run away with the tournament mid-way through the second round. The first round co-leader stood at seven under for the event standing on the 11th tee but gave three strokes back as the rain became more intense and now holds a share of the lead at four-under par 140. "When it was raining the hardest I lost a few strokes," he said.
Tied with Wilder is 40-year-old Harry Rudolph of La Jolla, who posted duplicate two-under 70s. The 2010 California State Amateur finalist and Kelly Cup Champion at Lakeside GC in Toluca Lake played well Friday but struggled to close out his round. The owner of Harry's Coffee Shop in LaJolla dropped three strokes on the last four holes, including a costly double bogey on his final hole. "The course was playing longer today and it was a bummer to finish the round like that," he said. "But I try to keep it in perspective.
Birmingham, Alabama's Steve Hudson wasn't bothered by the weather. The first-time participant is a two-time Alabama Golf Association player of the year and is capping a tremendous 2010 that saw him win his state mid-amateur title and qualify for the U.S. Senior Open at Sahalee. Hudson followed an opening 70 with a one-under 71, leaving him one back and seems to have learned the secret of playing well at the Preserve. "What a treat it is to come to a place like this," he said. "This is the type of course where par is a good score. You can't let up on any hole and you can't get greedy."
Two-time Stocker Cup champion Randy Haag is two shots back after a second round 73 (69-73--142) while defending champion Kevin Marsh is three behind after a second round 74. Also in the mix at the halfway point are Mark Mance of The Olympic Club (71-72--143), who is three behind the leaders and tied with Marsh and CordeValle's Darryl Donovan (73-72--145).
The battle for the Elliott Trophy saw Brad Stroh hold onto his first-round lead. Playing his home course with "A" player Kerry Mann (who shot 76), Stroh posted another eight-under net 64 and leads by two shots over Jack Myers of Claremont Country Club.
Competitors switched "A"-player partners, as they will do for the final round of the event Saturday. The field of 48 "A" players is cut to the low 20 scores and ties for the final round Sunday.
* The adverse weather the tournament experienced is the first since the final round in 2008.
* Georgia's Billy Mitchell and Billy Williamson of Cincinnati, Ohio had the experienced Jekyll and Hyde-like first two days. Both carded first round 7 over 79s that turned into second round two-under 70s, a nine-shot improvement. Bob Gregorski of Wisconcin witnessed a 10-shot improvement from his front nine to back nine in the second round, going out in 41 strokes and closing with a stellar 31 for an even par total.
ABOUT THE STOCKER CUP: The Stocker Cup, played in memory of Peter Stocker, is held each October at The Preserve Golf Club in Carmel. The championship field is comprised of 45 mid-amateur invitees, plus an additional 5 players who earn their entries via a qualifying round held prior to the event. Those final A-list golfers are complimented by a matching number of qualified B-list competitors, with invitations extended to friends, relatives and associates of the late Peter Stocker, as well as to various sponsors and other supporters of the event. In each round an A-player is teamed with a B-player in a net best-ball competition held simultaneously with the individual stroke-championship. The Stocker Cup is a Golfweek/amateurgolf.com Men’s World Rankings event.
ABOUT PETER STOCKER: Peter C. Stocker was born in Cincinnati, Ohio and educated at Denison University and the University of Denver. Peter and his wife Cathy came to San Francisco in the early 1970s. He exhibited entrepreneurial skills early in his career as he developed the internationally recognized "ParCourse" exercise and jogging trails. In 1974, Peter and his partners Bill Harlan and John Montgomery founded the Pacific Union Company of San Francisco, a highly successful real estate development firm. Pacific Union developed Meadowood Resort and Merryvale Vineyards in the Napa Valley, Opera Plaza in San Francisco's Civic Center and began the development of what was then known as Rancho San Carlos (and is now called The Preserve) a 20,000-acre private ranch near Carmel Valley. In the mid-1980s, Peter received national acclaim for his attempt to build a new downtown baseball stadium for the Giants, which ultimately came to fruition in 1998. He was also the developer of the highly touted Chardonnay Golf Club in the Napa Valley. His visionary talent and inspirational leadership were truly unique. Peter died in a tragic helicopter accident at Rancho San Carlos in 1990. The Stocker Cup Invitational was established in his memory the following year.