The SCGA Amateur Championship
The SCGA Amateur Championship is the nation's second-oldest, continuously contested amateur golf championship, having been held every year since 1900. Many of the nation's great amateurs -- from Paul Hunter and George von Elm to Craig Steinberg and Tiger Woods -- have won the championship and an even greater number have failed to capture the prestigious title. Here's a look back at the first 20 years of the tournament.
1900: Charles E. Orr, Pasadena GC, defeated SCGA President Charles E. Maud, Riverside Polo & Golf Club, 6 & 4 at Los Angeles CC. Twenty-nine players started the qualifying round after a rain delay.
1901: Walter Fairbanks of Denver and Los Angeles CC defeated Charles E. Maud, 5 & 4, at Los Angeles CC. Fairbanks rallied from 2-down with two to play and eventually needed 20 holes for his first-round win at his home course over William Fredrickson (who would become the tournament champion in 1906 and 1910).
1902: H. M. Sears defeated J. E. Cook, Los Angeles CC (who would serve as SCGA president from 1905-1911), 6 & 5 at Pasadena CC. Sears set a course record at LACC's Pico course with 79-83 -- 162 in the qualifying round. It was the first time that rubber- covered balls were used; they got much attention from the press.
1903: Walter Fairbanks defeated Charles E. Maud, 2 & 1 at Los Angeles CC. Fairbanks set an 18-hole course record of 77 in qualifying. Robert E. Hunter (age 17) of Chicago set a 36-hole record of 158 in qualifying. Thirty-seven players entered the tournament.
1904: W.K. Jewett of Colorado Springs defeated William Fredrickson, 3 & 2, in a 36-hole match at Los Angeles CC. This was the first year without a qualifying round, following a British tradition.
1905: Walter Fairbanks won his third championship, defeating William Fredrickson, 5 & 4, at Los Angeles CC. A qualifying round was reinstated.
1906: William Fredrickson defeated A. B. Swift of Chicago and Santa Barbara, 3 & 2, at Los Angeles CC. Fredrickson defeated Nat F. Moore of Chicago to reach the finals.
1907: Sterling Liness, LACC, defeated Robert Hixon of Toledo and Pasadena, 5 & 3 at Los Angeles CC. The rain-softened course limited qualifying to one round, while high winds kept scores high (medalist Winsor Walton shot 86 and only one other play broke 90).
1908: 17-year-old Paul Hunter defeated another Chicago resident, Nat F. Moore, 5 & 4, at Los Angeles CC. It was the last championship at LACC's Pico Heights course. It was also the first of a record five SCGA Amateur titles that Hunter would capture; he remains the youngest champion in the tournament's 99-year history.
1909: Paul Hunter became the first person to successfully defend his title when he defeated Nat F. Wilshire, LACC, 11 & 10 at Annandale GC. Hunter was top qualifier of 58 entries and an easy winner of the first championship held on the new Annandale GC course at San Rafael Heights. T. W. Jacobs, Wisconsin state Champion won the driving contest with a 240-yard blast.
1910: William Fredrickson defeated Nat F. Wilshire, 1-up, after 36 holes at Annandale GC. Fredrickson needed 19 holes to win his semifinal match. Hugo R. Johnstone set a course record of 157 in qualifying.
1911: Norman Macbeth, LACC -- designer of Wilshire CC and SCGA president in 1929 -- defeated E. N. Wright, Annandale GC, 9 & 8, at Los Angeles CC in Macbeth's first Southern California event. Hugo Johnstone again set a course record with 153 in qualifying.
1912: E. S. Armstrong, Midwick CC, defeated M. A. McLaughlin, Annandale GC, 3 & 1, at Los Angeles CC. High winds made play difficult; it took Norman Macbeth 13 strokes to finish the first hole of match play (518 yards), in part because the wind blew the ball off the green. This also marked the first year that the field exceeded 80 players.
1913: Norman Macbeth prevented E. S. Armstrong from becoming the second back-to-back winner in a 37-hole match at Los Angeles CC. It was the first time the tournament was played at LACC's new location in Beverly Hills and the first time that the championship match had gone extra holes.
1914: Carleton Wright, Annandale GC, defeated Morris Phillips, Redlands CC, 2 & 1. Wright was 19 years old. This was the first SCGA Amateur held at San Gabriel Valley CC.
1915: E. S. Armstrong defeated Harold B. Lamb, California CC, 3 &1. This was the first SCGA Amateur held at Midwick CC (Armstrong's home course). Armstrong became the first person to win both the SCGA Amateur and California Amateur in the same year.
1916: Harold B. Lamb defeated Jack Neville of San Francisco, SFCC, 6 & 4 at Los Angeles CC. Neville had won the first two California Amateurs in 1912-13 (he would eventually win three more) and co-designed Pebble Beach Golf Links along with 1919 SCGA Amateur champion Douglas Grant.
1917: Windsor B. Walton, LACC, defeated R. Crane Gartz, Annandale GC, 8 & 6 at Midwick CC. Walton defeated SCGA President Ed Tufts, 5 & 4, in the first round.
1918: R. J. Cash Jr., LACC, defeated Harold Lamb, California CC, 1-up after 36 holes at LACC. Lamb and Cash qualified 1-2 with scores of 159 and 160. Both cruised in their semi-final matches, Lamb winning 7 & 6 and Cash 10 & 9.
1919: Reigning California Amateur champion Douglas Grant, Burlingame CC, defeated Paul Gardner, 3 & 2 at Los Angeles CC. Grant, a player of international reputation, was spending winter in Southern California. With Jack Neville, he designed the famed Pebble Beach Golf Links, which opened in 1919.