MICHAEL CARMAN’S GOLF COLUMN: 2012 Year in Golf, part two

By Michael Carman

Peninsula Daily News

FIFTY-TWO UP and at the end of this one, 52 golf columns down for 2012.

Here’s part two of my 2012 Year in Golf, focusing on events from July through December.

Upcoming North Olympic Peninsula golf information will follow after my December entry.

Rare air in mid-July

In mid-July, North Olympic Peninsula residents were treated to at least two rare lightning storms.

One of the storms came overnight, but the second, stronger wave of weather rolled in during a Friday afternoon — perfect for storm-watching with cocktails under a covered porch (how I enjoyed the booms) but bad for the bottom line of local golf courses.

Thankfully, these things are a rarity, and we can golf at our courses relatively unimpeded in summer time.

Aussie, Aussie, Oi, Oi . . .

Australian Adam Scott faltered late, giving back a four-stroke lead with four holes to play and eventually the 2012 British Open title to South Africa’s Ernie Els.

Scott’s spinout down the stretch brought to mind the 1996 Masters collapse of countryman Greg Norman.

A 15-year old Scott skipped class to watch Norman that day, and for years he has told the story of the crushing disappointment he felt for Norman, his golf hero.

Hopefully, he can learn from the defeat and win himself his first major.

Rory reaffirms place

Rory McIlroy capped his second major title, the 2012 PGA Championship at Kiawah Island Golf Reslort, with a 20-foot birdie putt.

He broke Jack Nicklaus’ PGA Championship margin of victory record with his eight-stroke win, posting zero bogies over his final 23 holes (all played on Sunday due to a late Saturday storm).

McIlroy was so masterful that AP writer Doug Ferguson said runner-up David Lynn had “won the B-Flight” at the event.

More praise for McIlroy follows later in the column.

100 holes for charity

Port Ludlow golf pro Vito DeSantis raised $6,000 for Seattle Children’s Hospital during a 100-hole golf marathon on Aug. 21.

He shot a total of 8-over par for 100 holes with 89 pars or bogeys and 11 birdies.

Ryder Cup meltdown

Back in September I picked a close U.S. win in my Ryder Cup preview.

And after Saturday’s rounds were complete, I was kicking myself for not believing more in our side with Team USA up a seemingly insurmountable 10-6 heading into the final round.

I went to Seattle that weekend to watch Washington State play No. 1 (at the time) Oregon in football at Century Link Field.

While pregaming with some Oregon fans, I let on that I thought a Coug upset was more possible that night than a Sunday comeback by Team Europe.

Playing with a patch on their outfits dedicated to former Ryder Cup player and captain Seve Ballesteros, the European side roared back on Sunday’s final day, withstanding a delightfully-partisan pro-USA crowd to keep their mitts on the Ryder Cup with a 14-13 victory dubbed “the miracle at Medinah.”

Team USA will attempt to reclaim the cup at Gleneagles in Scotland in 2014.

LPGA Tour dominance

Asian golfers again dominated the LPGA Tour, with natives of South Korea (four), Taiwan, China and Japan claiming eight of the top 10 spots at the top of the 2012 LPGA Tour money list.

The lone American, Stacey Lewis, finished third in the money after winning four tournaments and the LPGA Tour Player of the Year award.

Shea honored, again

In early November I received word that Cedars at Dungeness Golf Course PGA director of golf and general manager Bill Shea had been honored with his second PGA Bill Strausbaugh Award in the past three years.

Shea was recognized for a demonstrated record of service to his section or association, leadership ability, involvement in civic activities and local charitable causes within their community and as being someone of outstanding character.

Shea and members of the Cedars staff are active with Special Olympics golfers, coaching the Sequim High School golf teams and lots of other charitable activities here on the North Olympic Peninsula.

December to remember

McIlroy picked up more hardware this month, winning both the PGA Tour and Euro Tour Player of the Year awards, in addition to a host of of Player of the Year honors from various publications.

The 23-year-old from Northern Ireland became the youngest player to win PGA Tour player of the year since Tiger Woods at age 21 in 1997.

McIlroy topped the PGA Tour’s money list and won the “Race to Dubai,” the Euro Tour’s money list.

An encore performance in 2013 is just what professional golf needs.

Holiday scramble

Port Townsend Golf Club will hold its annual Holiday Blues Scramble on Saturday.

Cost is $25 per player plus reduced greens fees.

Phone the course at 360-385-4547 for more information.

New Year’s Invitational

Cedars at Dungeness in Sequim will hold a 50-team New Year’s Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 5.

The event is open to all amateurs with a USGA handicap and professionals (with a limit of one professional per team, playing with a zero handicap).

Front-nine play is a two-person shamble (best ball scramble off the tee and stroke play through the hole after that) and back-nine competition is two-person best ball.

Cost is $60 for the public, $40 for annual members and includes KP’s, greens fees, a boxed lunch, cart fees, range and a chance at $1,500 in prizes (based on full field).

Partners must be within 10 handicap strokes of one another.

For more information or to register, stop by the Cedars clubhouse or phone 360-683-6344, ext. 1.

Three-player scramble

Sequim’s SkyRidge Golf Course will host a three-person Midwinter Scramble event on Saturday, Jan. 12.

Three drives must be used by each player during the round.

Shotgun start is 9:30 a.m. (barring frost) and cost is $90 per team with an optional $60 per team ($20 per player) honey pot.

Lunch will be served following play.

Power carts are $15 per seat and a small amount of heaters are $10.

Phone SkyRidge for more information at 360-683-3673.

______



Golf columnist Michael Carman can be reached at 360-417-3527 or pdngolf@gmail.com.

Last modified: December 25. 2012 4:07PM
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