March 29, 2014
(CARMEL)—The weather soured, but that didn’t stop champions from being crowned Saturday at the second annual Mixed Team Spring Championship at par-70 Carmel Valley Ranch Golf Club.
In the Chardonnay Flight (0-9 team index), Rancho Murieta residents John and Angie Friedrich came away with the title, posting a stellar round of 7-under 63 to defeat the runner-up tandem of Terry Levis/Joel Jessel by six strokes. The Friedrichs, who finished with a two-day total of 11-under 129, had entered the final round tied with Chardonnay defending champions Jake Markman/Althea Peng at 66.
For the Friedrichs, the win erased their 2013 Mixed Team debut, which the couple described as “awful.”
“The key was to keep at least one ball in play,” said Angie with a laugh. “That and don’t three-putt. It was a lot of fun.”
The Friedrichs were nearly flawless, carding an eagle on the 487-yard par-5 6th to go with eight birdies and just one bogey. Levis and Jessel made a move with two eagles, but could only muster up four birdies.
Placing third at 136 (69-67) was the Jordan squad comprised of Monty and Diane. The Markman/Peng duo, which was paired with the Friedrichs in the final round, slipped into a tie for fifth after posting a 72.
“There’s a competitive nature there but it’s below the surface,” John Friedrich said. “It’s supposed to be fun.”
The difference in the Merlot Flight (10-18 team index) also turned out to be a 63.
There, the tandem of Foster City residents Chris Luczkiewicz and Renee Anderson put up the number to knock off runner-ups Robert Armentrout and Nicki Anderson by four strokes.
Luczkiewicz and Anderson, who’ve been a couple for 13 years and play out of TPC at Stonebrae, were making their Mixed Team debut. They’d make their charge with an eagle, seven birdies and nine pars. The couple’s only miscue was a double-bogey on the par-4 17th.
“It’s awesome. I’m very excited about getting the win,” Anderson said.
“Renee drove the ball well and she putted, and I hit shots onto the greens” Luczkiewicz said. “We complemented each other really well.”
The Richardson team (Jim and Maureen), which took the first round lead with a 63, fell back to fourth place after a 71. Armentrout and Nicki Anderson carded two eagles and five birdies, but had to settle for a 66 due to four bogeys and a double-bogey.
The Shewchuk team of Thomas and Bonnie claimed third place with a 63 of their own that featured an eagle and eight birdies.
In the Zinfandel Flight (19-above team index), longtime partners John Lee and Kimlien Tran of Stockton made it tough on everyone else by posting a brilliant 11-under 59. The duo, who erased a four-stroke first round deficit, lit up their scorecard by writing in two eagles and nine birdies to go with just two bogeys to win by two over the tandem of Jim and Sasa Puchbauer.
For Lee and Tran, the breezy conditions were like playing at home. They reside near The Reserve at Spanos Park, where they play at least once a week.
“Playing in Stockton, we’re comfortable in the wind,” Lee said.
Following a disappointing first round 65, the pair spent some time on the Ranch’s driving range.
“We literally hit a pyramid of balls after Friday to work on everything,” Lee said.
According to Tran, the key to their 59 was perfect teamwork.
“I’m a pretty good driver and I was getting them in the fairway today. From there, John was knocking them on,” Tran said.
The Puchbauers did all they could to try and catch up, posting a 63 that included two eagles and seven birdies. First round leaders Dave and Judy Sanchez, who opened with a 63, had to settle for third place after carding a 70.
March 28, 2014
(CARMEL)–Great early morning weather led to a flurry of red numbers as the annual NCGA Mixed Team Spring Championship got underway Friday at sunny par-70 Carmel Valley Ranch Golf Club.
One of the teams taking advantage of the conditions–and getting their fair share of luck too–was the tandem of Jim and Maureen Richardson. The pair sprinted into the first round lead in the Merlot Flight (12-17 handicap index), carding a sizzling 7-under 63 that included a net eagle on the par-4 14th. Having also carded five birdies on the day, the Richardson’s two-stroke advantage would have even been bigger except for a pair of bogeys on No.11 and No.18.
One of the teams chasing the Richardson’s in the Merlot Flight is the tandem of Chris Luczkiewicz and Renee Anderson. The Luczkiewicz/Anderson team racked up seven birdies en route to an opening round 65 that could have been lower barring a double-bogey on the par-4 12th.
Alone in third place in the Merlot Flight at 66 is the tandem of Robert Armentrout and Nicki Anderson. The duo also had a great day, carding six birdies and an eagle on No.9 to go with four bogeys.
In the Chardonnay Flight (0-11 handicap index), it was a pair of 66’s that took the lead. John and Angie Friedrich were the first to come in at 66 after an eight-birdie performance that was only slowed down by a pair of bogeys and a double-bogey on the 17th. Of the team’s eight net birdies, six came on the Ranch’s par-4s. The Friedrich’s played the par-4s at 3-under for the round.
Also posting a 66 in the Chardonnay Flight was the tandem of Jake Markman and Althea Peng. The duo, who won the Chardonnay crown last year, was nearly flawless, carding seven birdies to go with just two bogeys. For Markman and Peng, it was all about starting off strong. The pair would go 4-under through their first seven holes.
Alone in third place in the Chardonnay Flight at 67 is the tandem of Terry Levis and Joel Jessel. Levis and Jessel were also solid, carding five birdies to go with just two bogeys.
The round of the day went to the team of Dave and Judy Sanchez, who carded a brilliant 61 in the Zinfandel Flight (18-above handicap index). For the Sanchez’, it was all or nothing. They’d card 10 birdies, an eagle, two pars and four bogeys.
When the Sanchez’ made birdies, they came in bunches too. The duo had a string of six birdies in a row to close out a front-nine 30.
On their back-nine, the Sanchez’ carded three straight birdies on holes No.11-No.13. To add to the mix, they’d also pencil in a hole-out eagle on the 358-yard 15th.
In second place in the Zinfandel Flight at 64 is a group of four teams: Carl Thoreson/Jeanne Benedetti, Michelle Sherpa/Tashi Sherpa, Jim and Sasa Puchbauer and John and Amy Price. The Thoreson/Benedetti pairing nabbed three eagles and four birdies, while the Sherpa’s, who won the Zinfandel title last year, carded eight birdies and an eagle.
The Puchbauers also went low, carding two eagles and five birdies, while the Price’s put up two eagles and four birdies.
The championship continues Saturday morning at the Ranch.