The Two-Man Wrecking Crew
It was one of those perfect, Southern California days, as 50 teams arrived at Oakmont Country Club for the 2016 Yamaha Senior/Junior Championship. There was a buzz of excitement that filled the air as contestants arrived, eager to tee it up at one of Southern California’s top Clubs! Even with a fair setup, Oakmont would still demand precision to navigate its many doglegs and championship caliber greens.
It was an exciting day filled with lots of birdies…a tribute to not only the talented field of PGA professionals representing the Southern California Section, but the pure putting surfaces of Oakmont Country Club. There were a total of 167 birdies made by the 50 teams that competed with a scoring average of 70.96, just a fraction under-par. Holes 9 and 11 seemed to give players the most fits, yielding only 4 total birdies while combining for 38 bogeys or worse. Two of three par 5’s (#1 & #8) provided good bounce back opportunities playing nearly a half stroke under par while the closing par 5 18th played very difficult and actually averaged a shade over-par for the Championship.
It was a tight race to the finish. Through 14 holes, the teams of Starkjohann/Block and Choi/Fergin were deadlocked at 6-under par with four holes remaining. Starkjohann and Block managed to birdie two of their remaining four holes to post an impressive 8-under par…however the team of Choi and Fergin did them one better birdieing three of their last four, locking up the championship with an outstanding 9-under par. Congratulations to Chi Choi, PGA and Mike Fergin, PGA on securing the title for the 2016 Yamaha Senior/Junior Championship.
A big thank you goes to the entire Oakmont CC staff for their hard work in executing a seamless event; as well as Distract Sales Manager, Raymond Scott of Yamaha for his continued support of the Southern California PGA and many of its respective clubs; Pepsi for donating beverages for this event; and finally to the rules officials that assisted with this championship, Mr. Ron O’Connor, PGA and Tom Powers.