April 15-16, 2019, at Virginia CC
The SCGA Mid-Amateur Championship is open to members ages 25 and older with a Handicap Index of 5.4 and below. Competitors undergo 18 holes of individual stroke play qualifying in order to reach the final field of 84 players. In the Championship, players compete over 54 holes of individual stroke play with the top 42 players and ties advancing after 36 holes to the final round.
Jeff Wilson tops Corby Segal in epic playoff
He had to overcome unprecedented circumstances during the first round and emerge triumphant in an epic playoff battle Tuesday, but it was all worth it for Jeff Wilson, who joined rare company by winning the 2018 Mid-Amateur Championship at The Saticoy Club.
Wilson, who eventually fended off Corby Segal after five playoff holes, is just the third player in history to capture the Mid-Am title three or more times. He also won the Championship in 2008 and 2015.
Tim Hogarth (five titles) and Mark Johnson (three) are the only others who can lay claim to that accomplishment.
“I don’t know what it is about this tournament, or why I’m able to have so much success, but I’m glad to be mentioned along with those guys,” said Wilson, who also admitted he “leaked a little oil” down the stretch Tuesday afternoon.
Segal, who earned Mid-Am Championship honors in 2016, came on strong Tuesday and fired a 70 – just one of two rounds under-par for the entire tournament – to finish 4-over 146. And when Wilson tapped in a par putt on the 18th hole for an identical 146, it forced a three-hole aggregate playoff.
Wilson quickly took control on the first playoff hole with a confident birdie and held a one-shot lead heading into the final playoff hole after both players managed birdies on the next hole. On the third playoff hole, however, Segal drilled the green with his approach on the par-3 No. 9 and knocked down a long birdie putt, forcing Wilson to steady and make par from 8 feet out to extend the playoff.
“I would’ve taken three pars on 7, 8 and 9 and let Corby have at it,” Wilson said. “I hit one close on 7 and he made a great up-and-down. And we both birdied 8, then he made a beautiful 25-footer on 9 and I had to make about an 8-footer, and honestly I couldn’t believe that was happening.
“Then we both go at it again, and both make a two – pretty crazy.”
Both players returned to the tee box on No. 9 and respectively found the green on the fourth playoff hole. After Segal splashed a 25-foot birdie putt to apply pressure, Wilson answered with a 20-foot birdie putt, drawing a roar from the small gallery and forcing the playoff into a fifth hole.
“When he made his, it made (my putt) a little straighter, I can tell you that,” Wilson said. “Heck, I didn’t expect to make it. I can tell you that. But they both went in.”
On what ended up being the final playoff hole, back at No. 7, Wilson methodically worked his way towards the cup and reached the green in two shots on the par-4 hole. After Segal came up short of the green on his second shot, Wilson was able to two-putt his way to the title.
After shooting a 76 during his first 18 holes Monday morning, Wilson – ailing hip and all – was in the middle of play on No. 6 (during the second round in the afternoon), when Mother Nature intervened. Before Wilson could finish No. 6, play was halted and eventually suspended due to whipping winds and dangerous conditions on the course.
“I was pretty fortunate, because I played well in the morning and shot 76. In the afternoon, (the wind) was really howling and I think I was 4-over and was going to make a bogey on (No. 6), or maybe worse, who knows,” Wilson shared. “Your attitude starts going south pretty quickly, so to have the round washed – it was pretty beneficial for me.”
Tournament officials opted to void the second round and convert the 54-hole championship into a 36-hole event at Saticoy. All players were eligible for and re-paired to start the final round. Wilson teed off Tuesday morning in fourth place and started with back-to-back birdies, propelling him atop the leaderboard at the turn.
Los Angeles’ Satch Herrmann (+6) finished in third place, while Hogarth and Ramie Sprinkling finished tied for fourth at 7-over. Mike Rowley, who was the clubhouse leader Monday night at 1-over, finished tied for eighth after shooting an 80 on Tuesday.
The top 10 finishers in this year’s Mid-Am Championship are exempt for next year’s Mid-Amateur tournament. Additionally, the top five will earn a spot into the SCGA Amateur Championship, which is scheduled for July 13-15 at La Jolla CC.
||The Saticoy Club|
||Santa Ana CC|
|2014||Ramie Sprinkling||Valencia CC|
|2013||Robert Funk||Bermuda Dunes CC|
|2012||Tim Hogarth||Rancho Santa Fe GC|
|2011||Scott Almquist||Mesa Verde CC|
|2010||Tim Hogarth||Hillcrest CC|
|2009||Tim Hogarth||Hacienda GC|
|2008||Jeff Wilson||Toscana CC|
|2007||Tim Hogarth||Mission Viejo CC|
|2006||Robert Funk||Bear Creek GC|
|2005||John McClure||North Ranch CC|
|2004||Mantor Hays||Pauma Valley CC|
|2003||Eric Wang||Mesa Verde CC|
|2002||Scott McGihon||Big Canyon CC|
|2001||Craig Steinberg||Lakeside GC|
|2000||John Pate||Virginia CC|
|1999||Tim Hogarth||Victoria Club|
|1998||Pat Duncan||Saticoy CC|
|1997||Brian Ricketts||San Gabriel CC|
|1996||Craig Steinberg||Victoria Club|
|1995||Brad Larsen||De Anza CC|
|1994||Mark Johnson||Indian Ridge CC|
|1993||Mark Johnson||Yorba Linda CC|
|1992||Craig Anderson||Bear Creek GC|
|1991||Sandy Galbraith||Apple Valley CC|
|1990||Mitch Voges||La Purisima GC|
|1989||Mark Johnson||Apple Valley CC|
|1988||Buzz Greene||Santa Ana CC|
|1987||Steve Lass||Apple Valley CC|
|1986||Sandy Galbraith||Wood Ranch GC|
|1985||Bernie LeBeau||Bakersfield CC|
|1984||Jim Myers||Apple Valley CC|