Goes on to win the hole and match
by Elizabeth Kricfalusi
, for amateurgolf.com
With a field full of “youngsters” playing at this year’s San Francisco City Golf Championship, experience clearly still counts as Redwood City’s Jim Evans, 45, moved on in today’s round-of-16 match play at Harding Park.
Evans, who is also a former back-to-back City champion (1995-96), won his match against Rick Reinsberg on the 19th hole, after coming up two inches short for his birdie putt on the 18th. He said he was pleased to have made it so far in this year’s championship, after he struggled during the qualification rounds, finishing the weekend just one stroke under the cut.
“I played awful on Saturday of the qualifying,” he said. “I had the yips really bad, and so I went and bought myself a long putter and I’m able to at least make a few putts now…Anyway, once I got into match play, anything’s possible.”
Evans, who figures he finished today’s round about 3 under par, had never used a long putter before the tournament. He added, “It takes getting used to, and you could see that on the last hole there. I had about a six-footer for birdie to win the hole and the match, and I left it short. Now you don’t often leave six-footers short, but with the weight of that putter, if you don’t swing it fast enough, it’s not going to go anywhere.”
Evans went on to praise the quality of the Harding Park course. “It’s absolutely one of my favorites. The rain has not helped much, but it’s still holding its own. The greens are very good... It’s just fantastic. What they did, Sandy Tatum and the whole group of folks that sort of saved the course, they should just totally be praised and applauded.”
On Sunday, Evans will be matched up against Michael Wilson, who finished 3 and 2 against Darryl Donovan.
Two newcomers to this tournament, Michael Miller and Scott Hess, made it to the 18th hole all square, after Hess had been down by four for the front nine. However, Hess hit his second shot into a hazard costing him a penalty stroke and, ultimately, the hole.
“All three of my matches came down to the last hole,” said Hess, who was playing this tournament as his first-ever amateur event. “This one just had to go the opposite way.”
“I enjoyed playing with him,” said Miller, who hadn’t played Harding Park prior to the tournament. “It’s a good track. I’ve enjoyed it, it’s in good shape, and the people have been keeping it up real well around here.”
Miller, a high school senior, will play against 44-year-old Bob Niger in Sunday’s quarterfinals. Niger, last year’s runner-up, beat Kevin Kobalter 2 and 1. Miller and Niger last met in January at Coyote Creek for amateurgolf.com’s Silicon Valley Amateur tournament. Niger finished third; Miller sixth.
Other Saturday highlights:
- The bottom half of the field all finished their rounds early, with none of the pairings making it beyond the 14th hole.
- In the Men’s Open Division, being played at Lincoln Park, Brendan Costello defeated John Christensen 1-up in the Susko flight. Tournament Director Judith Powell said that the pair reported about eight birdies and eight double or triples between the two of them during the round. The Lincoln course remains very soft from the recent rains, resulting in a large number of lost-ball penalties.
- Sally Krueger, who has won the Women’s Division nine times since 1982, defeated Jennifer Gallagher 5 and 4. She attributed her continuing success to the fact that “I’ve just played in it more times than anyone else.”
“I just think it’s one of the greatest tournaments there is,” she said. “The golf course is fabulous. The people who run it all volunteer their time. It’s a lovely field… and they did a wonderful job with the renovation.”
For complete tournament results, visit the San Francisco City Golf Championship Web site
ABOUT THE San Francisco City Championship
*An NCGA Points Tournament*
**New Entry Procedure for 2024:
Registration opens for all players on
October 1. There will be 50 spots held for
players under the following
* The past 10 years of the San Francisco City
* 2023 San Francisco City Men’s
Match Play Qualifiers
* Top 20 men’s 2022-2023 NCGA Points
* 2023 NCGA Champions (Amateur, Mid-
* The top 3 finishers in each of the 6 AmateurGolf.com Winter
(Dec 2023-Feb 2024)
Registration for exempt players, and for non-
players with a handicap index
of 6.4 or lower
as of the date of
entry, opens on October 1 and will
open until the field limit (120 players including
reserved for exempt players)
is reached. When the field limit is reached, all
additional registrants will be entered in
pre-qualifier at Presidio Golf Club on Friday,
Once entries close, if there are any unfilled
the Men's Championship (due to
fewer than 50 exempt players registering
or withdrawals), they will be filled by Pre-
registrants in the order in which
Players entering pre-qualifying will pay an
of $165 for the pre-qualifier, and
advancing from the pre-qualifier will pay the
remainder of the entry fee (must be paid
prior to playing).
The 36-hole match play qualifier will be held
9-10, 2024, with
18 holes played at TPC Harding Park and 18
Course for a combined 36-hole qualifying
There will be 156 players in the qualifying
64 players advancing to match play. When all
qualifying has been completed, the Men’s
Championship Flight will consist of 64
In the event of a playoff to qualify for
player must be present in order to retain his
to participate in the playoff.
Match play will begin on March 16, 2024. All
match play for the Championship Flight (Mar
23-24) will be held
at TPC Harding Park.
A schedule of all dates of
play can be found on the tournament website
WITHDRAWALS AND REFUND
Players needing to withdraw should do so by
out the form at sfgolfchampionship.com/contact/
the entry deadline of February 19
refund of their entry fee minus
$50. There will be no refunds after the
The use of carts is prohibited for players and
in the Men’s Championship Flight (Appendix I
SPECIAL OFFER TO SF CITY PLAYERS:
players get 50% off Strackaline Yardage Books! CLICK HERE for
ABOUT THE SAN FRANCISCO CITY
The oldest municipal tournament in the USA.
play event with scratch men's, senior men’s,
women's, senior women’s, and open flight
Past champions include Ken Venturi, Harvie
Juli Inkster, Bob Rosburg, George Archer, and
Dorothy Delasin. Some of the “non winners”
Tom Watson and Johnny Miller. Click the
for more about this wonderful event.
View Complete Tournament Information