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California Amateur Championship

June 24-29, 2019, at Monterey Peninsula CC

This is one of the nation’s oldest state amateur golf championships. The championship originated in 1912 and was held at Pebble Beach Golf Links from 1919 until 2006. In 2007 the CGA broadened the scope of this prestigious championship by rotating the weeklong event to selected courses throughout the state, alternating between Northern California and Southern California every other year. Players must have an index of 4.4 or less, qualifying is available statewide for both NCGA and SCGA players, players may only attempt to qualify once. The championship consists of 156 players who will play 36-holes of stroke play to determine the 32 player match play field. The final match is played over 36 holes. During the stroke play portion of the tournament a simultaneous team competition takes place between the NCGA vs. SCGA competing for the Roger Latham Cup.

Championship Info Player Handbook Book A Room

Exemptions Qualifying Results

Bobby Bucey Edges Two-Time Runner-Up Yoshihara For Title

Photos Results

If there was a theme song for Bobby Bucey's weekend run to the California Amateur Championship title, it would surely be "Won't Back Down" by Tom Petty.

Faced with a 4-down deficit in Friday's quarterfinal match against Noah Woolsey, Bucey rallied back to stay alive in the bracket. He lost three holes in a row with bogeys, but reached in deep, and found something. After birdies on Nos. 6 and 7, Bucey didn't record a single bogey, and flipped his opponent, winning 3&2.

Today, against Hidetoshi Yoshihara, things looked even bleaker. Yoshihara, a sophomore at UCLA, turned on the heat late in the first 18 holes, making birdies on three of the last four holes 3-up. His medal play score (with the usual concessions) was 67.

On the second hole of afternoon play, Bucey had to re-hit his bunker shot after his first effort hit Yoshihara's bag. Yoshihara took the hole, and a 4-up lead, to the next tee.

But just like Friday's semifinal against Woolsey, Bucey birdied back-to-back again at Nos. 6 and 7, the latter hole playing 465-yards with a back-left hole location. Bucey played his approach to the center of the green, and holed a 20-footer.

He narrowed the lead to just one hole with a par on No. 9, when Yoshihara's drive just failed to clear the water on the right side of the tough dogleg-right par-4. A deft up-and-down chip on No. 10 brought Bucey back to square with Yoshihara, with the advantage of momentum on his side.

That's where the 29-year-old former baseball player -- he went with golf when forced to make a choice in high school -- started to look like a man on a mission.

His mom Karen called him a scrappy baseball player, and the kind of tenacity that he learned playing shortstop helped him avoid dropping holes at key moments on the back nine. First there was an up-and-down from tight lie on No. 12, a long par-3 where Yoshihara was sitting pretty on the green with his driving iron tee shot. After almost holing his pitch, Bucey converted a 5-footer and the small crowed saw a little fist pump.

"I practice those chips all the time," said Bucey, who works doing audits for an accounting firm.

After being saved by a tree from going o.b. with his second on the 519-yard par-4 14th hole, Bucey could only watch as Yoshihara nearly chipped in for birdie, and lost the hole (and a bit of his momentum) when he failed to save par from the thick Kikuyu.

The turning point came at No. 15, where Bucey made a bounce-back birdies to square the match. After a nicely positioned fairway wood tee shot, he pitched to 5-feet on the short par-4 and made birdie to square the match once again. Another key up-and-down on the legendary 16th at La Costa Resort (remember Tiger Woods shot there against Tom Lehman?)

This was looking like one of the best finishes in the tournament's history, yet there were just a handful of friends and family looking on. Not to worry, Bucey and Yoshihara knew the magnitude of the situation.

On No. 17, Bucey stuffed his approach to 6-feet on the par-4, while Yoshihara left himself with a treacherous 30-footer for birdie over a hump in the deep green. His first putt left him an unsettling 5-footer, but when Bucey failed to convert he had a chance. As Yoshihara's par save slid by, he was left to wonder if his runner-up finish in 2016 was about to be repeated.

But Yoshihara didn't back down either.

Both players hit perfect drives on the par-5 18th, finding the fairway, and close proximity to each other at less than 20-feet away. Their layup shots were even closer, and they were left to determine whose turn it was by using a laser.

"I've never seen that happen," said the 3-time NCGA title winner Bucey.

Yoshihara had the honor, and he hit a solid approach to 20 feet. Bucey followed, and once again the players were within close range, a couple of feet away. Bucey's putt to clinch the title slide by the right side, and despite getting a perfect read Yoshihara's putt to send it to extra holes did the same thing.

Bucey's father was on the bag all day (and all tournament) while Yoshihara carried his own. It was a lonely walk to the clubhouse and awards ceremony, but try and try again Mr. Yoshihara.

He's just 19 years-old and the third time is the charm. Next year's championship will be held at Monterey Peninsula CC.

Content courtesy of AmateurGolf.com

Past Winners

Year Winner Medalist Team Site
2018 Bobby Bucey
Cody Hall
Northern California Omni La Costa Resort & Spa
2017 PJ Samiere
Eddy Lai
Southern California The Olympic Club
2016 Shintaro Ban
Bryan Baumgarten and Andrew Levitt Northern California Valencia CC
2015 Shotaro Ban
Satch Herrmann Southern California
Lake Merced GC
2014 Xander Schauffele
Jason Anthony Southern California Omni La Costa Resort & Spa
2013 Cory McElyea Corey Pereira and Xander Schauffele Northern California Monterey Peninsula GC
2012 Kevin Marsh Bhavik Patel Southern California La Cumbre CC
2011 Bhavik Patel Philip Chian Northern California The Olympic Club
2010 Scott Travers
Scott Almquist
Kevin Fitzgerald
Southern California

Rancho Santa Fe GC and La Jolla GC

2009 Geoff Gonzalez
Geoff Gonzalez Southern California Lake Merced GC
2008 Nick Delio
Matt Hoffenbers
Alex Kim
Scott McGihon
Northern California Lakeside GC and Oakmont CC
2007 Josh Anderson
Blake Trimble Southern California Monterey Peninsula CC
2006 Jordan Nasser
Steve Woods Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
2005 Don DuBois
Jordan Cox Northern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
2004 Spencer Levin
Mark Sear Northern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
2003 Patrick Nagle
Roy Moon Northern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
2002 Eddie Heinen
Don DuBois Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
2001 Darryl Donovan
Jeff Wilson Northern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
2000 Nick Jones
James Stewart
Todd Miller
Southern California Bayonet and Blackhorse GC
1999 Tim Hogarth
Ed Cuff, Jr.
Steve Conway
Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1998 Ed Cuff, Jr. Craig Steinberg Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1997 Jason Gore Tim Hogarth Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1996 Mark Johnson Jeff Gilchrist Northern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1995 Jeff Sanday Mark Johnson Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1994 Steve Woods Steve Woods Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1993 Casey Boyns Gary Vanier Northern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1992 Todd Demsey Harry Rudolph, III Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1991 Harry Rudolph III Sandy Galbraith Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1990 Charlie Wi Mark Johnson
Paul Stankowski
Southern California Pebble Beach Golf Links
1989 Casey Boyns Jerry Michaels Pebble Beach Golf Links
1988 Don Parsons Aaron Meeks Pebble Beach Golf Links
1987 Mike Springer Bob Lasken
Tim Loustalot
Steve Bogan
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1986 Terrence Miskell Dana Banke Pebble Beach Golf Links
1985 Sam Randolph Sam Randolph Pebble Beach Golf Links
1984 Duffy Waldorf Duffy Waldorf Pebble Beach Golf Links
1983 Kris Moe Gregg Twiggs Pebble Beach Golf Links
1982 Gary Vanier Corey Pavin Pebble Beach Golf Links
1981 Joe Tamburino Mike Barnblatt Pebble Beach Golf Links
1980 Bobby Clampett Bobby Clampett Pebble Beach Golf Links
1979 Mark O’Meara Lennie Clements Pebble Beach Golf Links
1978 Bobby Clampett Don Levin Pebble Beach Golf Links
1977 Lee Mikles Tom Culligan Pebble Beach Golf Links
1976 Mike Brannan Scott Simpson Pebble Beach Golf Links
1975 John Cook C. Richardson
Curtis Worley
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1974 Curtis Worley Craig Stadler Pebble Beach Golf Links
1973 Mike Brannan Mike Brannan Pebble Beach Golf Links
1972 Mac Hunter Mark Pfeil Pebble Beach Golf Links
1971 Doug Nelson Sandy Galbraith Pebble Beach Golf Links
1970 Bob Risch Tom Smith Pebble Beach Golf Links
1969 Forrest Fezler Ted Lyford Pebble Beach Golf Links
1968 Johnny Miller Les Peterson Pebble Beach Golf Links
1967 Bob E. Smith Arne Dokka Pebble Beach Golf Links
1966 Bob Eastwood Bob Eastwood
Cesar Sanudo
Jack Bariteau
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1965 Vern Callison Dr. Art Butler Pebble Beach Golf Links
1964 Steve Opperman Ron Cerrudo Pebble Beach Golf Links
1963 Dr. Paul Travis Peter Choate Pebble Beach Golf Links
1962 Dick Lotz John Lotz Pebble Beach Golf Links
1961 John Richardson No qualifying Pebble Beach Golf Links
1960 Larry Bouchey Dr. Art Butler Pebble Beach Golf Links
1959 Vern Callison Dan Morgan
Bob Roos
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1958 Eli Bariteau Dan Morgan Pebble Beach Golf Links
1957 Tal Smith Dr. William O’Neal Pebble Beach Golf Links
1956 Ken Venturi Bob Silvestri
Ken Venturi
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1955 Dr. Frank Taylor Tom Draper Pebble Beach Golf Links
1954 Dr. Frank Taylor Dr. William O’Neal Pebble Beach Golf Links
1953 Gene Littler Ken Venturi Pebble Beach Golf Links
1952 Bob Silvestri Gene Littler Pebble Beach Golf Links
1951 Ken Venturi Bud Holscher Pebble Beach Golf Links
1950 Bob Gardner Fred Jordan Pebble Beach Golf Links
1949 Mac Hunter Gene Littler
Tal Smith
John Dawson
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1948 Eli Bariteau Russell York
Bob Silvestri
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1947 Bob Gardner Morgan Fottrell Pebble Beach Golf Links
1946 Bruce McCormick Eli Bariteau Pebble Beach Golf Links
1945 Bruce McCormick John Dawson Pebble Beach Golf Links
1944 Ernie Pieper, Jr. Bob Rosburg Pebble Beach Golf Links
1943 Elmer Cites Henry Suico Pebble Beach Golf Links
1942 John Dawson Bud Brownell Pebble Beach Golf Links
1941 Ernie Pieper, Jr. Ralph Lomelli Pebble Beach Golf Links
1940 Ed Monaghan Rennie Kelly Pebble Beach Golf Links
1939 Jack Gage Roger Kelly Pebble Beach Golf Links
1938 Roger Kelly Roger Kelly Pebble Beach Golf Links
1937 Roger Kelly Ernest Combs
Frank Hixon
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1936 Mat Palacio, Jr. Roger Kelly Pebble Beach Golf Links
1935 Jack Gaines Ernie Pieper Jr. Pebble Beach Golf Links
1934 Stuart Hawley John Robbins
Jack Nounman
Pebble Beach Golf Links
1933 Charles Seaver No qualifying Pebble Beach Golf Links
1932 Neil White No qualifying Pebble Beach Golf Links


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