The unbelievable is now believable, the unthinkable can be thought, the underdogs are the victors (if only by the skin of their teeth) and the upstarts are on top. Yes, that’s right…the North Team finally won a North/South Challenge.
In the four previous contests between North County and South County members of the San Diego Aces Disc Golf Club, the South had always prevailed. In 2008, the South won with 31 wins, 24 losses and 5 ties. 2009 was the closest match to date, with the South winning 29-25-6. The South won 37-29 in 2010 and 32-17-10 in 2011 (yes, I know some of the math is off, but that’s what the records say…). And in 2012, the South was expecting another win over the less-experienced North. It’s not surprising, as South County has had disc golf at Morley Field since the mid-1970′s, so there’s a long history of the sport and the player base has had time to fully develop. North County didn’t have disc golf baskets installed until the mid-2000′s, when Fly-18 installed the oft-maligned Dr. Fred baskets at Emerald Isle. Emerald Isle Disc Golf is no more, but in the meantime courses have been added at Kit Carson Park in Escondido, Brengle Terrace Park in Vista, Goat Hill in Oceanside and all over San Marcos (Montiel Park, Sunset Park and Cal State San Marcos). It is this recent growth of the sport that has brought about the development of an enthusiastic, yet green, community of players.
Dan Lichtman, Captain of the South Team, did his usual thorough job of team-building, holding several try-out rounds at Sun Valley Golf Course and Morley Field. His efforts were hurt a bit, however, by the fact that the Challenge came one week after the Morley Team Tournament, and some top players were not ready to commit to back-to-back weekends full of disc golf. The North Team also lost some potential players because of this, but probably not to the same extent. Four-time Captain A.J. Risley shared recruiting and leadership duties with Co-Captain Scott Miller, who infused new energy into the North Team. While there was some grumbling from the South side about the eligibility of a few North players, the competition began in earnest at Kit Carson Park on Saturday morning.
It was foggy and a little chilly for the start of the doubles round at Kit Carson, but warmed up once discs started hitting chains. The South wiped away any home-field advantage that the North may have had, winning some key matches. In a battle of captains, Dan Lichtman and partner Pat Paramore defeated the father/son team of A.J. and Allen Risley, four holes to one; and in the first all-lady doubles match in the series’ history, Kayleen Boyle and Shonda Garcia beat Pam Iam and Courtney Cruz, 5-2. At the end of the morning, the South led: 5 wins, 2 losses, 3 ties.
Saturday afternoon saw 20 singles matches played at Brengle Terrace Park in Vista. The North hoped to gain some ground back, since few South players had much experience playing the county’s newest course. The North charged back, winning several matches by large hole margins, something that would come back to haunt the South in the end. Scott “Swan” Tullius and T.J. Cruz won their matches big on the same card, taking down Carlos Caballero and Bobby Martin 9-3 and 9-4, respectively. In big Open division matches, Dallas Snow-Ramirez beat Justin Kirk 7-2, while Kinetic Kouch-Krasher Philo Braithwaite bested Trey McKelvey 8-4. And in a key Masters-division match, Allen Risley won over Dan Shorkey, 4-1. The North edged out the South at Brengle Terrace, with 10 wins, 8 losses and 2 ties.
At the end of Saturday’s play, the South led with 13 wins, while the North had 12 wins…with 5 matches tied.
In past years, Morley Field had always been the Achilles’ Heel of the North squad. Twenty singles matches headed out onto the course, with South Team spirits riding high, expecting the usual Morley domination. Instead, what they got was a stalemate. The South had some big wins: Jesse Martinez 9-1 over Tom Vincent, Ian Funston over Evan Taylor 10-4, Shane Dehner 6-2 over Mark Verrochi and Dan Shorkey evening up the Master’s division, 4-2 over Allen Risley. But the North fought back hard: Don Vincent beat Mike Valli 7-4, Dallas Snow-Ramirez came through big again in Open beating Magnus Petersen 7-4, Poway’s Mike Lust took down Angel Garcia 6-2, and Daniel Boe shocked Mike Tyberg 10-2. When the dust settled, the South had won ten matches. But so had the North. The two teams pushed at Morley, a big surprise indeed.
After three courses, the South had 23 wins, the North 22 and there were 5 ties. Hard to be much closer.
The final set of doubles matches were played on the long layout at Sun Valley, once around from the white tees and once from the blues. The whole weekend had been very close, competitively, and that trend continued through the afternoon. On the first card to finish, each side won a match: Philo and T.J. beat Trey and Jesse 5-4, while Angel and Shooter beat Lusty and Don 7-2. The South still led by one. The second card finished up with a win for the North – Nick Newton and Kevin Christie over Tyler Tremmeling and Bobby Martin, 7-1…and a win for the South – Justin and Carlos beating Scott and Swan, 6-3. South 25, North 24. Card three was also a split: Magnus and Mike edged Dallas and Mark 5-4, while Team Rizbee beat Shorkey and Hesser, 5-2. South 26, North 25.
Card number four was you guessed it…a split. Stephen and E.T. beating Shane and Jason 6-2 for the North, while the Southern ladies beat the Northern ladies, 7-2. The South led 27-26-5. As the cards were coming in, players from both teams were keeping track of the math. Players formed a gallery adjacent to the 9th green, standing up on the side hill to get a good view of the discs flying in the setting sun. Word spread out to the final card that the match was very close, so the pressure was on. The match of Chris Armacost and Jordan Beam versus Big D and Pat Paramore had already been won by the North, but the players knew that the match might possibly go to the tiebreaker: total holes won. That made the outcome of the final hole still important. Chris and Big D both had tee shots just inside the circle, with Chris and Patrick slamming home suicide putts to halve the hole. The North had just tied the match, 27-27-5.
The final match, Mike Tyberg and Ian Funston for the South versus Daniel Boe and Tom Vincent for the North had been a roller-coaster. Mike and Ian had taken a 3-1 lead over the first nine holes, but Daniel and Tommy fought back with birdies on long holes 2 & 3 to even up the match. But Tyberg hit a monster putt on hole 5-long to put the Southies in the lead by one and that’s where it stood going into the final hole. Mike and Ian hiccupped a bit, with Ian’s big sidearm tee shot tomb-stoning into the green and Mike’s shot sliding down the side hill. Tommy must have been pumped up, because his tee shot screamed past the basket and skipped O.B. But Daniel kept his cool, laying his tee shot on the edge of the hillside to the left, about fifteen feet short of the basket. Ian and Mike both took strong runs at the putt from down the hill, but both missed. Daniel, usually a sure-thing putter fired his disc at the basket, hitting solid chains…but spitting out the right side. Whispers swept over the crowd – Tommy needed to hit this putt to win the hole, halved the match and bring the entire challenge to a tie. From somewhere in the crowd, Don Vincent called out “take your time Tommy!” And he did (for Tommy, that is), before tossing the disc dead-center. The crowd erupted in cheers for the “Cinderella Story”!
Immediately, the focus shifted to the scorecards. Word had spread that the tie-breaker for the match was total holes won. The holes won for Saturday had already been totaled, and the North held an edge after Day 1. The captains quickly totaled up the Day 2 scores and it looked like the North had won! But then, in shades of the year 2000 in Florida, calls came up from South players for a recount. A new team of score-counters pored over the cards, under the lights of cell phones held by nervous players. And when the scores were added up for the second time? The North had won the tiebreaker 276-263!
Members of the North team huddled together for a team picture and then headed off for a victory dinner at Fuddruckers. South players eased their sorrow with free 6-packs of Karl Strauss beer, and started plotting their revenge. But it’s good-natured revenge. Every year, the North/South Challenge impresses new participants with the level of competition, but also the camaraderie, both within the teams and between the teams. It’s disc golf at it’s best – everyone cheering for each other, no matter what side they’re on. Can’t wait until next year!
Members of the Confederacy could only wish they had the success of the South County
Disc Golf team. The South team, led by Captain Daniel Lichtman, has won all five of the North/South Challenges that have been held to date. Each year, 20-player teams are assembled by appointed captains – a mixture of 5 Open players, 12 Amateurs, 1 Masters-age player and 2 Ladies. The teams play 4 match-play rounds over two days, two on North courses and 2 on South courses, with one match each day being singles and one being doubles. These rounds are match play, so total strokes for the round don’t count – what matters is how many holes you win. This year, Saturday’s matches will be played at Kit Carson (doubles) and Brengle Terrace (singles), with Sunday’s matches being played at Morley Field (singles) and Sun Valley (doubles). Check-in times for the first round each day are 8:30am, with play beginning at 9am. The afternoon rounds are expected to start at 1pm, but will give players time for travel and lunch.
As in years past, this weekend is also election time for the San Diego Aces board. The online portion of the voting has been going on since last Monday and will end Friday night. The ballot box for in-person voting will be traveling along with the matches this weekend, so if you haven’t had a chance to vote online (some members did not receive invites because of bounced e-mail addresses), you can vote in person at one of the matches.
Trash-talking surrounding the match has already begun: “Should we give the North team some mulligans this year?” posted Patrick Paramore on the South County team Facebook page. Former South team member Aaron Van Matre opined that they “should just rename it to the “South always wins” trophy”. Notoriously self-deprecating South County resident Mark “Mdub” Wilson posted “Heck, I could be on the south team and we’d still win every year!”, and even South Captain Dan Lichtman chimed in: “Sweet. I see another win for the South…” once the rosters were posted online.
Above the Mason-Dixon line (the 56 freeway), the North team is in its usual state of disarray. Team member Scott Miller vented his frustrations on Facebook (“Fire A.J.!”) over the glacier-like pace of Team Captain A.J. Risley’s selection process, and for that was awarded Team Co-Captain status. The North team finally has a roster filled out, but if previous years are any guide they should be collecting subs for any players who decide not to show for fear of another drubbing by the South. But South County Captain Dan Lichtman sees a small light at the end of the tunnel for the North: “They have many improved players this year. We may have won all years previous, but who knows. Even a broken clock is right twice a day.”
Either way, whether it’s business as usual for the South or an underdog victory for the North, it should prove to be a fun and competitive weekend of disc golf. Come out and support your team!
Disc Golf Association to be planning for 2013. Perhaps the most important
part of planning for the upcoming year is to choose the club officers who
make decisions on behalf of the membership. Each year a Board of Directors
is chosen through our election process that includes your choice of voting
on-line or in person. All active Aces members get to vote for those
individuals who they believe will best represent them in conducting club
eligible for the Aces Board of Directors you must be an active Aces member,
be at least 18 years of age, be able to attend the monthly meeting and have
some time to dedicate to the club. If you meet these qualifications and
have the desire to help shape the direction of the club, please nominate
yourself or someone who you think will be a good candidate. The club has
grown significantly this year and it is important that our board is chosen
such that all parts of our membership are represented.
Please include the nominee’s name, contact information and a brief message
to the membership to:
Story courtesy of Patrick Paramore:
After 3 rounds of play at the 2012 Morley Field Course Championship, the top 4 players in the Pro Division, Carlo Pelg (-23), Micah Dorius (-21), Trey McKelvey (-20), and Tyler Tremelling (-16) faced off each other in the Final 9. Carlo had a two stroke lead going in over the defending champion Micah, with Trey 3 strokes back, and surprising newcomer Tyler in the hunt. Just ask Carlo how many times he has finished bridesmaid to Micah over the last ten or so years and it’s not been a pretty picture for him.
Carlo birdied 7 of the 9 holes to secure his lead and finally become the victor! Trey who had recently moved back to San Diego this year ties Micah for 2nd place and also secures a spot for the San Diego Team Tournament which will be held the first weekend of December. Tyler takes down 4th and will be the guy to watch out for next year!
In the Amateur division, after 2 days and 3 rounds it came down to a sudden death playoff between Jason Rime and Mitch Z tied at -5. Jason never gave Mitch a chance upon acing the first playoff hole (hole 15). And with consistent playing and two hot rounds in the Women’s division, Kayleen Boyle takes the championship trophy in the 2012 Morley Field Course Championship!
For the next two weekends, Kit Carson Park in Escondido and Brengle Terrace Park in Vista will be hosting the SoCal Disc Golf Series Championships. Ams will play Sat./Sun. Nov. 10/11, Pro will play Sat./Sun. Nov. 17/18. The tournaments will be the deciding factor in several of the SoCal Series season-long points races - prestigious titles that several top San Diego Aces are chasing. Registration is now open for both members and non-members. Both tournament weekends are proudly hosted by long-time SoCal sponsor Innova Disc Golf, and promise to have fantastic player packs and payouts to the top 50% of each division. All Am division winners will receive baskets, top 3 places will receive trophies. Check out the flyer below for more details:
Course layouts for the Am weekend: Kit Carson Park – Brengle Terrace Park
Sign up for the Am event at: http://www.discgolfunited.com/disc-golf-tournaments/tournament-dashboard.cfm/tourn_id/532
Sign up for the Pro event at: http://www.discgolfunited.com/disc-golf-tournaments/tournament-dashboard.cfm/tourn_id/533
Do you ever take pictures of the courses that you play? I know you do – I see them on Facebook all the time. How about sharing your pics with the rest of the disc golfing world, not just your “Friends”! If you have pictures that you feel do a good job of displaying a hole on your local course, there are a few websites that can show those pictures to other disc golfers. This can be a big help to a golfer who is traveling through and wants to figure out which course to play – I know I always appreciate it. A few of these sites are:
- DG Course Review – http://www.dgcoursereview.com/ - DG Course Review has a ton of resources related to disc golf courses: a clickable map, course data and info, message board, reviews and PICTURES! To add your pictures, find your local course in the directory, click on the “Media” tab, and find the little “Upload Photos” link in orange at the bottom of the Media tab. You need to create an account to upload pics (and these accounts aren’t free). The paid accounts give you access to all sorts of cool disc golf resources.
- Disc Golf Scene – http://www.discgolfscene.com/ - This is more of a social media-type site, organized around a database of courses. Each course has a page, where you can find info on who plays there, upcoming events, leagues, aces and course records and PICTURES. These accounts are free and give you access to all of the features. To upload pictures, find your course and you’ll see a “+Upload pictures of this course” link on the “Info” tab.
Check out these sites and start adding photos. The whole (disc golf) world is waiting!!!!!!
It’s mid-October and the first cool days of Fall have arrived. Some casual players are packing away their golf discs until Spring, but seasoned players know that right now is when competition on the course is heating up. There are quite a few competitive (and not so competitive) events coming up before the end of the year. Here’s a list of what we know about:
- Saturday, October is apparently “Glow Golf Day”. Kinetic Disc Golf will be holding a 2-round event at Brengle Terrace Park – the first round is a “Legacy Ace Run” (similar to the Ace Race held at Montiel), while the second round will be a glow ace round, on a modified darkness-friendly BT layout. The fun starts at 1:30. If you’re down south you can head to Sun Valley for your glow golf fix. MJ and crew are hosting a night golf event that starts at 5pm, with last tee time at 8:30pm. For more info on these events, see the “Upcoming Events” listings on the right-hand sidebar of this screen.
- Who’s the best disc golfer at Morley Field? Most years it has turned out to be Micah Dorius, but he always has to earn it at the Morley Field Course Championship tournament. This year’s tournament is November 3/4, and consists of 3 rounds on a challenging Morley layout. Only three divisions: Open, Am, Women – no silly PDGA MA1, MA6, MPX, IPA, SAT, etc., etc. The top three Open and top Masters-age finishers qualify for spots on Team San Diego for the Southwestern Team Tournament in December. Check out the flyer here. No online signups – you gotta go to the pro shop.
- The SoCal Disc Golf Association season is almost over. The only events left on the schedule are the two weekends of the SoCal Championships, held this year at Kit Carson Park and Brengle Terrace Park. Ams play Nov. 10/11, Pros play Nov. 17/18. Innova Disc Golf always sponsors this event, which means the payout will be great. There are a few San Diego Aces who are hoping that strong showings at the SoCal Championships can help them win the mini-basket trophies you get for a SoCal Series title – Max Nichols is still in the hunt in Men’s Open, Randy Wylot is near the top in Men’s Pro Grandmasters, and A.J. Risley currently leads in Men’s Advanced Am. A few extra incentives to play these events: the San Diego Aces will have a team for the Southwestern Team Championship, and the SoCal Championships will be one way the team is selected; and these events will also be used to select the North team for the Aces’ North/South Challenge. Flyers and links to online registration can be found on the right sidebar, or on the “Upcoming Events” page.
- The first weekend in December means…the Southwestern Team Disc Golf Invitational at Morley Field. This event (“Snapper’s Clambake”) has been going on for at least 25 years and is a very interesting team match play event. Eight teams from all over the Southwest (Arizona, Huntington beach, Redwood Empire, Santa Cruz, Sylmar, San Diego, Oak Grove) bring their best players in the Open, Pro Masters, Pro Grandmasters, Pro Senior Grandmasters and Pro Women’s divisions. Players play a round-robin match play tournament, with the top two teams holding a 19-hole final. Many former (and maybe a current) World Champions will be on hand, so the play level is super-high. Team San Diego is made up of players who have either dominated the Open division of the Morley Monthlies, finished at the top of the Morley Course Championship, played well in past team Tournaments or make it on through a series of match-play “grinders”. This year, there will also be a “Team San Diego Aces” for local players who don’t quite make the Team S.D. cut. Play well in the Morley Course Championship or SoCal Championships to get on that team.
- Mid-December (dates TBA) brings the San Diego Aces’ North/South Challenge. South Captain Dan Lichtman is undefeated – with his Southies winnng all of the annual matches so far. The tide may be shifting, as there are more and more strong North players…or so hopes Team North Captain A.J. Risley. Each team consists of 20 players: 5 Men’s Open, 1 Pro master, 2 Women and 12 Ams. One day of play occurs in North County and one day in South County. On each day one round is singles match play and one round is doubles match play. The South courses are typically Morley Field and Sun Valley. The North courses are up in the air – Kit Carson is a safe bet, but the other course could be Brengle Terrace, Goat Hill or even Montiel. If you want to be a part of this event – contact your local team captain (their info is on the “Contact Us” page). The dividing line for North vs. South is Miramar Rd.
- The end of December might be the right time for the return of the Goat Hill Monthly?
- January and February are Ice Bowl season. Expect to have Ice Bowls held at Montiel Park (Jan. 12), Olive Glen (Sycuan) and Mission Bay Golf Course (Feb. 24).
Additional events are bound to pop up. Keep your eyes on the Aces’ web page and Facebook page for more info!