SF City Championship: Saturday 3/12 Results

Story by Elizabeth Kricfalusi, for amateurgolf.com

Defending Senior’s champion Earl Stewart missed his putt by mere inches on Harding Park’s 18th green to force a playoff against Jack Bieber at Saturday’s San Francisco City Golf Championship semifinals round. However, Bieber’s bogey on the 19th hole paved the way for Stewart to take his fourth straight 1-up win in the match-play tournament.

“Every match I’ve played, I’ve gone to the 18th or the 19th hole,” said Stewart, a retired firefighter with the San Francisco Fire Department. “So I feel very fortunate to be in this position right now, because every match I’ve had is tough. There are no ‘gimmes’ out there.”

Stewart said he felt particularly fortunate to have won today’s match because he played poorly on the back nine. At one point, Stewart found himself 3-up with five holes to play, but “I was giving them away,” he said. “I was fading. I just couldn’t keep the pressure on him and I bogeyed three or four holes in a row back there and let him back in the match.”

Stewart will face off against Rob Thompson, who also won on the 19th hole against Mike Butler, in Sunday’s finals match. Thompson is currently the leader on the NCGA’s 2005 Senior Points list (as well as the amateurgolf.com list); Stewart is in third place.

In the Men’s championship, which comprised 36 holes, Daniel Lim finished 1-up against Will Johnson. On Sunday, Lim will play Michael Wilson, who defeated Bob Niger 2-up.

The Women’s #1 seed and defending champion, Sally Krueger, will challenge #2 seed, 16-year-old Christina Hirano, after a 6 and 4 win against Michelle Mitra. Hirano defeated Saana Rapakko 5 and 3.

The Open division’s flights played their semifinals at Harding Park today as well, after having played their previous matches at Lincoln Park. Harding's Director of Golf George Price noted that there are many challenges in accommodating both the tournament and the daily guests.

“There are a lot of moving parts on the semifinal and final weekend of the San Francisco City, and there’s a lot of coordination that has to be done,” said Price, adding that today’s rounds had gone very smoothly. “The morning matches got done with the championship and everybody’s right on schedule, on time, and there’s been some exciting golf.”

For Sunday’s finals matches, the Men’s and Women’s divisions will play 36 holes; the Senior’s and Open’s matches will remain 18 holes. For complete tournament results, visit the San Francisco City Golf Championship Web site.

ABOUT THE San Francisco City Championship

** The qualifying field for the San Francisco City Men's Championship qualifier has been reached 120 players. Players may enter the Pre-Qualifier here. Please see below for a description of the entry process.


Match Play qualifying will be held February 15-16, 2020 and will consist of 36 holes played at TPC Harding Park and Lincoln Park Golf Courses.

From November 1 - November 30, registration will be open only for exempt players under the following categories:

* The Past Ten years of San Francisco City Champions
* 2019 San Francisco City Men’s Championship Match Play Qualifiers
* Top 20 Individuals 2018-2019 NCGA Points Lists
* 2019 NCGA Champions (Amateur, Mid-Amateur, Junior)
* 2019 USGA Event Qualifiers (Amateur, Mid- Amateur, Junior)

On December 1 at 8:00am, registration will open to all players with a handicap index of 6.4 or lower as of 12/01/2019, and will remain open until the field limit is reached. Once the field limit is reached, all additional entrants will pre-qualify at Lincoln Park on Friday, February 14.

Those entering pre-qualifying will pay an entry fee of $150 for the pre-qualifier, and those advancing from the pre-qualifier will pay an additional $150.

Once all qualifying has been completed, the Men’s Championship Flight will consist of 32 contestants -- the defending champion if entered (who will be the #2 seed), and the remainder from the Men’s Championship qualifier.

If the defending champion wishes to play in qualifying for Medalist honors, he loses the #2 seed and will be seeded accordingly if he qualifies successfully.

*In the event of a playoff for match play a player must be present in order to retain his right to participate in the playoff.

Match play will begin on February 22, 2019. All match play for the Championship Flight will be held at TPC Harding Park.

The oldest municipal tournament in the USA. Match play event with scratch men's, senior, women's, senior women's and open flight divisions. Past champions include Ken Venturi, Harvie Ward, Juli Inkster, Bob Rosburg, George Archer, and Dorothy Delasin. Some of the 'non winners' include Tom Watson and Johnny Miller. Click the 'history' tab for more about this wonderful event.

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