Club Champion Bailey Ogrin followed his scorching 67 of Friday with a disappointing 68 on Saturday. He bogeyed two of the easiest holes on the course including #2 Lakes and only had four birdies and an eagle to offset them. Out of poor Bailey’s last six rounds, five have been in the sixties. He has had thirty-two birdies and three eagles in that stretch. To put that in perspective, it is exactly the same number of sub-par holes as Jim Gabriel has had in his last one hundred seventeen rounds dating back to June 1, 2012.
Despite his outstanding performance, Bailey lost Saturday’s round by five strokes to Rickie Currens. Currens fired a net 63 to capture first place in the Inferno Cup competition and pick up 326.1 points moving him from 24th into 16th place in the standings. Rickie is now in the thick of the race and has a legitimate crack at climbing into the money, but he’ll have to play an extra round or two to gain the points needed to get there. Ogrin did take second place and strengthened his grip on the lead for the Inferno Cup title. Patrick Sheehan edged Matt Bintzler by a stroke to hold on to third place.
It appears the great putt giveaway of last week came to an end this week. Scores were back into the realistic range with the average gross running at 85. This is pretty close to where the laws of statistics say scores should fall. It appears only “legitimate gimmies” were awarded. Is there such a thing?
Only eight rounds to go and still two dozen golfers with a good chance for the money. And thanks to our sponsor, Van’s Golf Shops, everybody has a chance for some great prizes.
Bailey Ogrin was sitting in first place in the Inferno Cup Standings on July 25th. Howard Jones took over the top spot in the next round and held on to it for six weeks. As of this Friday evening, Bailey Ogrin is once again on top of the heap. He fired another gross 67 to take first place in the day game along with his partners, Jim Funk and Tom Hansen. They edged Kris Rosser, Scott Hull and Pat Collins by a single stroke. Bailey’s torrid 67 included seven birdies and two bogeys. He rounded the turn with a 32 on the Arroyo course and finished with a 35 on the Lakes side. Other notable rounds on the day included a two under par 70 by Kris Rosser and a net 66 for Ken Vlah.
Toughest hole on the day? The par four #1 Arroyo – average of 5.3 strokes per player. Easiest hole on the day? #18 (#9 Lakes) – averaged under par (4.95 strokes per player). It gave up 14 birdies and an eagle.
There are a total of nine Inferno Cup events left in the season. There are still two dozen players that have a realistic chance of finishing in the money. A handful of those players have yet to reach the fourteen round quota; those players get full credit for any points earned in their matches until they exceed their quota. Pat Sheehan, Tom Swan, Gary Graham, Skyler Irvine and Rick Hurula all stand to gain handsomely with each successive match until they hit fourteen total. More than a dozen players are clumped together in the thick of the fight where every point will count. Only about 500 points currently separate sixth place from sixteenth place. One win can earn a golfer over 300 points. The more of the remaining nine matches you play, the better your chances of clawing your way into the money. It’s almost a certainty that it will come down to the last match.
Understanding your “threshold”: Remember that only your top fourteen point totals count toward the championship. That could mean you win an event and pick up 300 points, but with only 200 points counting toward your total. In way of example, assume you’ve played twenty matches, but the fourteenth highest point win was 100 points. When you win 300, it knocks the fourteenth highest point total into fifteenth position and off your list. You pick up 300, lose 100 and net 200. For those wishing to see their point threshold as of September 5th, click here and scroll down to find your detailed record.
The top five positions in the race for the Cup remained unchanged. There was some minor shuffling near the bottom of the money positions, i.e., sixth and seventh. Dan Hourihan climbed from seventh into sixth bumping Matt Bintzler (who didn’t play) down a spot. Only about a hundred points separate sixth from tenth place. With exactly ten rounds left to play, two dozen players still have realistic chances of finishing in the money.
In the day game, the team of Harold Hoeg, Ron Dobkin and Jim Gabriel survived the challenge of James Wexler, Jason Sample and Pat Collins to take first place honors. I say it was “ghost busters’ Wednesday” because the first two teams to tee off clearly had evil spirits to contend with and had to chase them from the field. In the process, they suffered greatly. Mike Nichols, Heard Broadrick and Mike Hickey beat Howard Jones, Mark Ramser and Tom Hansen to avoid DFL by one stroke. The two teams were an average of twenty strokes behind the winners. Great job boys!
Harold Hoeg, Pat Collins, Dan Hourihan, Mike Forde and Jason Sample – 69
In the wake of Saturday’s giant putt giveaway, scores returned to close to normal with an average gross of 86.7. The handicap differentials were a little higher than normal (5.0), but the ghost buster teams probably accounted for the difference. Inexplicably, the easiest hole on the course for the day was #4 Arroyo, normally one of the toughest. It played at par-and-a-half. It gave up no birdies, but 62% of the field parred the hole.
Matt Bintzler shot a gross 75 (net 62) to take total command of the Saturday Green Inferno Cup group. His closest competitors, Bailey Ogrin and James Wexler, were five strokes back in the individual net competition. The five stroke victory looks even bigger when considering the spread between the next seven positions was only two strokes. Bintzler bagged 306.4 points toward the Inferno Cup title with his win.
Bailey Ogrin stayed hot carding a gross 69 to continue his march toward the top of the season’s leaderboard. He now sits less than 25 points shy of first place, but Jones is back. Bailey’s total amounts to a deficit of about one-quarter of one percent of the current first place total. Mike Nichols, Scott Hull and Bruce Partridge all sit within a win or two of first place as well. Bailey’s threshold (the number of points needed to move up in the standings) is currently 130.6 while Jones’ threshold is only 111.6. Nichols is at 94.6, Hull is at 90.9 and Partridge is at 65.7. Game on!
I was at a little book publicity event in San Francisco Saturday so I didn’t see the match played out. However, from the numbers, I’m going out on a limb and jumping to some conclusions. I realize there are some who question the use of numbers for conclusion jumping. The trick is to wear your parachute when making the leap. Here it goes.
The average gross, net and differential (net score minus course rating) are show below. Pay particular attention to the differential.
I could go back further, but the numbers will be consistent. Frankly, I could make some adjustments for those playing from the gold tees and the differences would be even more pronounced and would illustrate the point to which I’m jumping even more dramatically.
On Saturday, there was a miracle or . . . a major leak in one of the ponds caused a giant vacuum to suck balls into the holes on the greens nearest the leak or . . . the grounds crew accidentally cut the cups with the wrong disk and they were eight inches wide or . . . (and here’s my jump), there was a great putt giveaway that dwarfed all government welfare payments everywhere. I say golfers were giving putts so often that the scores were greatly distorted.
If this was the case and gimme’s were the rule of the day, then the playing field was level (assuming everyone used the same standards for gifting putts). The problem comes when you understand that with differentials violating the laws of statistics, everyone ends up posting scores that are between three and four strokes lower than they should have been. Great for the egos, but disaster for the handicaps. If this were to become the accepted way of playing (and posting), then play will be ever so slightly faster and the participants won’t stand a ghost’s chance in hell of winning a tournament against golfers who putt’em out. It doesn’t make a damn bit of difference to me; I was sipping Irish Coffees in San Francisco and saying hello to Brian Williams at the marina in Sausalito. However, those willing participants might want to rethink taking the fleeting glory in exchange for a shot at winning a tournament in the future.