Tehama Takes NCGA Team Play Title

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. (Oct 23, 2010) - After thousands of team match rounds, the finale could not have been any closer. Tehama and Pajarao Valley almost went extra holes to crown the winner but Jim Simon was able to close out his match on 18 allowing Tehama to capture the 22nd Annual Team Match Championship title at Poppy Hills.

Knotted at 16-16 and then 17-17, the championship came down to the last individual match on the course between Simon and Don McCombs. Tehama’s Simon built a 4up lead midway through the back nine but McCombs clawed his way back. Both players teed off on the par-5 closing hole at Poppy Hills as the only competitors on the course, Simon was able to hold onto his 1 up lead with a closing bogey that was good enough for a 19-17 win, Tehama’s second since 2005.

The Carmel club’s victory in the final was its second in as many days, capturing the Thursday league title with a win over Windsor the day before. Both finalists advanced on the strength of convincing margins in the semifinals. Tehama was seeking to win its second title since 2005 and avenge a loss in last year’s championship to Riverside.

“Our consistency is due to our home golf course,” commented Tehama captain Yakobovich. “Tehama is tough, there are not many level lies and most of our team is used to difficult playing conditions and we are able to adapt easily.”

While several players from the championship squad were intact, including team captain Bill Yakobovich anchoring the current team, the lineup for Saturday’s play was without five key players because of the Stocker Cup at The Preserve, on overseas trip and a La Rinconada event. One member, Lon Moellentine, competed in wake of a hospital stay just several days before.

“We are truly a team,” explained Yakobovich. “Guys who don’t normally play came through big for us today, this is certainly not the case of just a few guys carrying the team.”

The consolation match also came down to the wire with Windsor holding on to defeat Lake of the Pines 19-17. Lake of the Pines made a late surge to close the gap but Martin Byrne secured the final point to deliver victory for Windsor.

The popular championship is the conclusion to a summer-long competition involving more than 200 teams from across Northern California. The 12-man teams competed in four-ball (best ball) matches concurrent with singles’ matches, with each match worth two points, or a total of six in each group. More than 15,000 rounds were played to bring the final four clubs - Tehama, Windsor, Pajaro Valley and Lake of the Pines - to the Monterey Peninsula.

ABOUT THE NCGA Team Match Championship

Participating clubs with 12 players per team compete in matches during the summer with the top teams from each region advancing to the Championship at Poppy Hills. Format is as follows: A team of two players plays the opposing team of two, playing three matches simultaneously - two individual matches and a four-ball match.

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