The voice of Natalie Wood, the child star of “Miracle on 34th Street” has echoed in my head for weeks. “I believe, I believe” she cried out resolutely. The only difference was that she believed in Santa Claus. I believed in getting a skin in the Kildare Group. Admittedly, the existence of Santa Claus seemed to have a much higher probability. But I’m here to tell you miracles do happen. I went home with two of them. Put down the beads brother; my prayers have been answered. Oops. Almost forgot – there were others out there playing too.
Wednesday’s match was a most interesting affair. Nine two-man teams competed in a best net ball format. One twist was that the teams weren’t selected until after the match had been completed. The computer button for team selection was pressed by Jim Stamatis. Yes, he and his partner Dan Hourihan finished with Inferno Cup points. The other twist was that each person on a team had to account for nine of the 18 holes in the best ball match. It was a creative and fun idea of Dennis Kildare. Eight out of the nine teams had no changes in their scores when compared to a normal best ball match. Only one team lost a stroke as a result of the nine hole requirement. Ironically, it was the team of Raoul Encinas and Dennis Kildare. They would have finished in a first place tie. But when each was forced to account for scores on nine of the holes, they lost one stroke which dropped them from first place into a second place tie. They lost the tie breaker and fell into third place. Ouch.
The match was won by the team of Bruce Partridge and Joel Temple. Coincidentally, Phil Graham ended up paired with his brother Gary and they took second place. Three hundred dollars were divvied up between six skins. Gary Graham, Tom Hansen, Raoul Encinas and Dan Hourihan took one each while Howard Jones grinned over two of them.
The individual play winners battled heat and humidity.
- Joel Temple – 76
- Dave Inman – 78
- Gary Graham and Mike Miller – 79
- Raoul Encinas, Gary Graham and Bruce Partridge – 65
There were no changes at the top of the Inferno Cup standings with Inman, Stamatis, Kildare, Woods and Hansen hanging on to the top five spots respectively.