SunBird Men’s Golf Association Match Play Challenge


Norm Ott

There are three major tournaments scheduled during the Men’s Club winter season. They are the SunBird Cup, the Match Play Challenge and the Club Championship. The SunBird Cup was played in December and was reported in the February paper. The second of these is the three-week Match Play Challenge which was started and completed in January.

The match play format is different than the typical gross/net play, scrambles or other formats where the player with the lowest total gross or net score is declared the winner. In match play, two players play against each other in a hole-by-hole competition, where the player with the lowest gross or net score on a hole wins the hole and where the player with the most holes won wins the match. A player’s total gross or net stroke score for the match does not figure in determining the winner. The winners move on to the next week to play another winner from the first week, while those who have lost move on to play in consolation rounds against others who have lost the previous week.

In this year’s challenge, 71 players who signed up to play the first week were placed in nine flights, eight to a flight, according to handicap. The championship flight was played at gross score, and the remaining flights were played at net score. In the bracketed format used in this tournament, eight players were divided into four brackets, two to a bracket, who played against each other. The winners then went into two winners’ brackets the second week, and the two winners played for the championship the last week. All others played in consolation rounds. This year, except for the Championship flight, all flights carried the name of former and prominent members of the Men’s Club to honor their contribution to the success of the Men’s Club and to the SunBird Golf Club. Except for Leo Buries, the remaining men are all deceased. The winners and second-place finishers, respectively, by flight, were the following:

Championship Flight – Jack Cooper and Fred Nixon

Stan Ryan Flight – To be determined – Gary Hall vs. Jerry Chamberlin

Cal Macpherson Flight – Jim Bickett and Gene Dunbar

Leo Buries Flight – Lew Lepore and Russ Bower

Earl Brown Flight – Howard Anderson and Dave Fischer

Grady Gray Flight – Patrick Leach and Al Dannheim

Ron Russell Flight – Roy Comeau and Ross Bennett

Gene Herman Flight – Gary Metzger and Ken Myles

Otto Frank Flight – Ken Cross and Don Friesen

In other news, there were two hole-in-ones recorded since the last report. Lew Lepore aced 14 and John Franklin aced 17.

The schedule for March is quite full. Highlighted are the Club Championship, the Couple’s Gross Score Shootout, the Men’s Gross Score Shootout, the Conley (USA versus Canada) Cup and the Men and Ladies’ joint tournament and awards luncheon.

The next meeting is March 6 – main agenda item, election of officers.