This time last year the SCPGA’s 12 best AAA players piled into a van and headed North to Hunter Ranch expecting another fun week of golf and returning home with the cup that had made its home at the Southern California PGA Section office nine of the last 10 years. Unfortunately the North had other ideas and laid a shellacking on the South to the tune of 16 to 8. Needless to say that left a sour taste, one this prideful bunch wasn’t interested in sampling again!
The South team was loaded with talent, returning four members from last year’s team and slew of new talent eager to make their mark! Comradery and chemistry seemed strong with this group and you got the sense at the pairings dinner on Sunday night that it was going to be a different outcome this time around!
The tournament was off to a competitive start Monday morning at the beautiful Indian Wells Golf Resort. Through nine holes the South team was down in four of the six matches but managed to scratch and claw their way to 3.5 to 2.5 lead in the morning Four-Ball. Then began the afternoon Foursomes and the South team put their foot on the gas! Perhaps the most impressive nine hole stretch of the tournament was turned in by the team of Raj Samra and Cavin McCall who shot a blistering 7-under par 30 on their front nine in alternate shot, eagling the first two par 5’s in route to a 7&6 victory. The South as a whole really showed their depth in this format winning 5.5 of a possible 6 points to take a commanding 9 to 3 lead heading into Tuesday’s Singles matches.
The morning came and the South picked up right where they had left off…clearly with a chip on their shoulder and something to prove after last year’s loss. They narrowly missed out on setting the record for the largest victory in the cups history but were plenty satisfied with their 17.5 to 6.5 victory in this year’s cup matches!
Thank you to Joe Williams, PGA Director of Golf and Randall Carney, PGA Tournament Director for hosting this year’s North/South Cup Matches. Also, thank you to Jim Ireland and Tim Wilkinson of Under Armour for not only donating this year’s uniforms for the South team, but for coming out to watch and support the team! Thank you to Brian Gonzales and Steve Rice from Club Glove for donating custom towels to both teams, and to Dee Dee Lasker from Golf Pride Grips for donating new grips to each member of the South team.
Lastly, thank you to all that participated in the AAA this year and helped make it one of the most successful years to date and congratulations to the top 12 that earned their way on this team with a great year of golf!
Kenny Pigman, PGA (2-1), Bobby Nickell (2-1), Cavin McCall (2-1), Raj Samra (2-1), Chris Lungo (3-0), Jayme Backos (1-1-1), Tyler Pritkin (1-1-1), Steven Bendt (2-0-1), Thomas Chu (2-0-1), Michael Mendoza (3-0), Lyon Lazare (3-0), Matt Parkovich (2-1).