2014 San Diego County
Match Play Championship

Aviara Golf Club
May 2 – 4, 2014


San Diego Amateur Golf held the stroke play qualifying portion of the 2014 San Diego Match Play Championship on Friday afternoon amidst sunny and hot conditions at Aviara Golf Club.  The greens were the story of the day, with many players struggling and a few players thriving on the typically fast Aviara greens.

Craig Davis of Chula Vista, a San Diego Cup Matches veteran and former University of Arizona player fired the low round of the day and claimed the #1 seed thanks in part to a new driver.  Davis, who put a brand new Taylor Made driver in his bag just prior to play, hit it long and straight and claimed medalist honors with a solid round of 2-under par 70.  Davis made the turn in 2-under par and played the back nine in even par.  Finishing in 2nd place and receiving the #2 seed was Joe Ryon of Carlsbad.  Ryon got off to a hot start, and was 3-under par after only six holes.  Ryon would bogey #8 and #9 and then shoot even-par on the back nine to finish at 1-under par 71.  Jason Meijers of San Diego is the #3 seed thanks to his good play on Friday.  Meijers, who was 1-under par thru 12 holes, wrapped up his round at 2-over par 74.  Redmond Lyons was the leader heading into the back nine and actually had it all the way to 3-under par after 10 holes of play.  Lyons would struggle on 17 and 18, however, to finish up at 3-over par 75.  Perhaps the turnaround round of the day belonged to Phil Walker of Rancho Santa Fe.  Walker would make a ten (10) on #4 and bogey #5 to sit at 7-over par after only five holes of play.  Walker would quickly right the ship, making birdie at 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, and 12 to get back into contention.  A double-bogey finish on arguably the most difficult closing hole in San Diego would see Walker still claim the #4 seed at 3-over par 75.

Thank you to all the players who participated in the Qualifying portion of the San Diego Match Play Championship and to Aviara Golf Club and good luck to the qualifiers in the round of 16 being played tomorrow morning.

Stroke Play Qualifying Results

70 (1) – Craig Davis (Chula Vista)
71 (2) – Joe Ryon (Carlsbad)
74 (3) – Jason Meijers (San Diego)
75 (4) – Phil Walker (Rancho Santa Fe)
75 (5) – Redmond Lyons (San Diego)
76 (6) – Hardeep Dhani (Poway)
76 (7) – Brian Konishi (Escondido)
78 (8) – Mike Mehran (San Diego)
79 (9) – Koedchai Sujiwarodom (San Marcos)
81 (10) – Pete Roberts (San Marcos)
81 (11) – Tom Sugameli (Del Mar)
81 (12) – Kyle Jensen (Encinitas)
81 (13) – Steve Mills (San Diego)
82 (14) – Geoff Park (Oceanside)
82 (15) – Gene Walsh (La Jolla)
82 (16) – Ryan Demirdjian (San Diego)
83 – Mark Stuart (La Jolla)
83 – Taylor Massey (Del Mar)
85 – Jeff Hunter (Rancho Santa Fe)
86 – Jason Jennings (Cardiff)
88 – Ryan Furey (San Diego)
88 – Gary Crocker (San Diego)
91 – Tony Orlandini (Chula Vista)
92 – Kyle Robinson (San Diego)
93 – John Fieberg (San Diego)
94 – Brad Bernstein (San Diego)
96 – Kyle Coleman (San Marcos)
NC – Brent Bowyer
WD – Tom Kroll
WD – Pat Duncan
WD – Ray Gutoski
WD – Cory Gladstone
NS – Steve Leong

Round of 16

The Round of 16 got underway on Saturday morning and brought with it another hot day.

#1 seed Craig Davis, with his new Taylor Made driver in tow, squared off against the affable fireman and #16 seed Ryan Demirdjian.  All square after two holes, Davis would win holes 3, 4, 7, 8, and then birdied #9 and #10 to build a commanding 6-up lead after ten holes.  Demirdjian, who recently qualified and competed in the SCGA Mid-AM, could not make a charge and the two would tie holes 11, 12, and 13 with pars.  Davis would win his opening match, 6 & 5, and the crafty veteran who is hitting long and straight drives to go along with his deft short game and amazing putting was even-par thru the 13 holes of the match.

#8 seed Mike Mehran built an early lead and never relinqueshed it in his opening match against Koedchai Sujiwarodom of San Marcos.  Mehran would get it all the way to 6-up after ten holes of play.  Sujiwarodom, a talented player, surmounted a bit of a charge.  The Cal State San Marcos student would win holes 11 and 12 to gain some momentum, but let an opportunity get away when he bogeyed #13 to halve the hole.  Mehran would go on to birdie the 201-yard par-three 14th to close out the match, 5 and 4.

Phil Walker of Rancho Santa Fe can make birdies in bunches, proving that and then some in the stroke-play qualifier.  Steve Mills of San Diego would play steady to open up, and actually was 2-up after only two holes.  Walker would respond, however, and after three straight birdies on holes 3, 4, and 5 would go all the way from 2-down to 1-up.  Mills would win #6 with a good par, but Walker birdied #7 to again go 1-up.  On the par-five 8th hole, Mills would let an opportunity get away.  After hitting a beautiful 5-wood to 12-feet, Mills would three-putt to par and halve the hole, and after both players made par on #9 the match headed to the back nine with Walker 1-up.  Mills would birdie #10 to get the match back to all square, but Walker again responded and won #11 with a par to get back to 1-up.  Walker and Mills both played steady golf on the back nine, and ultimately Walker would go dormie, 2-up with two to play.  Mills responded by winning the 17th, but could not make a charge on #18.  Walker would be conceded a par and would win, 2-up.

#5 seed Redmond Lyons of San Diego faced off against long-hitting and #12 seed Kyle Jensen on Saturday morning.  Lyons would get off to a hot start, winning hole #1 with a par and then made back-to-back birdies to go 3-up after 3 holes.  Jensen would get back into the match, winning holes #4, #7, and #10 to cut into the lead and get it back to only 1-down.  Lyons would respond however, and not lose a hole the rest of the match, winning holes #11, #13, and #15 to win his opening match, 4 and 3.

Joe Ryon of Carlsbad, the #2 seed, faced off against Gene Walsh of La Jolla, the #15 seed.  Both players played some very solid golf all day in a match that was closer than it was on paper.  Ryon fired a 1-under par 35 on the front nine, making eight solid pars and a lone birdie on the par-five 8th hole.  Walsh would make seven solid pars, but bogeys on holes 3 and 9 would see him 3-down at the turn.  With birdies tough to come by on the difficult Aviara layout, Ryon would make six straight pars to close out the match, 4 and 3.

Brian Konishi of Escondido, the #7 seed drew the very talented SD Amateur Golf veteran Pete Roberts of San Marcos in the opening round.  In a seesaw match, no player would get more than 1-up as the players matched each other, shot-for-shot.  All-square heading into the 14th hole, Konishi would make an outstanding birdie to get it back to 1-up.  After both players halved #15, Konishi would make par on #16 to win the hole and go dormie, 2-up with two holes to play.  Roberts would respond emphatically, and birdied the difficult par-five 17th hole to remain in the match.  Heading into one of the most difficult closing holes in San Diego, Roberts would make a gritty par to send the match to extra holes.  Heading back to #18, Roberts would push his tee-shot into the water.  With Konishi in play, Roberts took his drop and took a chance, going for the pin.  With his shot just short and right into the water, Roberts would concede the match with Konishi winning in 19-holes.  Great match by both players.

Jason Meijers of San Diego, playing in his 1st San Diego Match Play Championship, played great in the stroke play qualifier and earned the #3 seed.  The bad news was that he drew the Defending Champion, Geoff Park, in the round of 16.  Park got off to a hot start, chipping in on the 1st hole for birdie to go 1-up.  After Meijers drew even with a par on #4, Park nailed a 25-footer for birdie on #5 to again go 1-up and would go on to win holes 6 and 7 to build a commanding 3-up lead.  Meijers would respond like a champion, winning #8 with an eagle three and #9 with a solid par to get right back into the match.  Park would birdie #10 to again go 2-up.  Meijers would again respond, making two consecutive birdies on #11 and #12 and made a statement getting it right back to all square.  Both players would tie holes 13, 14, 15 and the two were all square heading into #16.  Meijers, who had not held a lead all day, made par on the 16th to go 1-up, and would close out the match on the very next hole, winning 2 and 1.

The final match of the morning and round of 16 was #6 seed Hardeep Dhani of Poway squaring off against #11 seed Tom Sugameli of Del Mar.  The players were all square heading into the 6th hole, where Dhani drew first blood and going 1-up after a bogey by Sugameli.  Dhani would then win #7 with a birdie to quickly go 2-up, however Sugameli cut the lead in half quickly with a win on the 8th hole.  Unfortunately for Sugameli, it would be the last hole of the day he would win.  Dhani would win #11 and #13 with pars and then birdied the 14th hole, going on to win, 4 and 3.


(1) Craig Davis VS (8) Mike Mehran

Craig Davis and Mike Mehran were both on the winning team at the 2013 San Diego Cup Matches.  This match figured to be the heavyweight match of the afternoon and it did not disappoint.  Mehran got off to a fast start in the afternoon, and was 1-under par after three holes which helped him build a quick 2-up lead on Davis.  2-down after six holes, Davis would respond just like the #1 seed he was, winning holes 7 and 9 with birdies to get it back to all square.  Davis would go on to birdie #10 (his 3rd birdie in 4 holes) and go 1-up, and then after a Mehran mistake would win #11 with a par to go 2-up.  Mehran, no stranger to match play and a key figure in the Amateur Team victory last year, would birdie holes 13 and 14 to get right back into the match and have it be all square going into 15.  Both players would halve 15, and a Mehran three-putt on the 16th hole would lead to a 1-up lead for Davis heading into 17.  With Davis already in for par on the 17th, Mehran faced a 25-footer for birdie.  Complete with a fist pump, Mehran nailed the birdie, center-cup, to send the match to #18 all square.  With the momentum on his side, Mehran found the fairway on the difficult 18th hole while Davis pushed his tee shot and found the water.  After Mehran found the green with his 2nd shot, Davis, taking a drop and with an akward lie, hit a clutch approach to 12-feet.  Mehran would calmly two-putt for par, with Davis needing to make the 12-footer to extend the match.  The left-to-righter just lacked a little speed, missing just narrowly on the low side.  In the end, Mehran went from 1-down heading into #17 to a win, 1-up on 18 in the upset of the tournament so far.  A great match with great playing by both competitors.  For the record, Mehran was even par and Davis just a few over in a great match that saw some solid birdies and outstanding play.

(4)  Phil Walker VS (5) Redmond Lyons

Redmond Lyons of San Diego, playing in his 1st San Diego Match Play Championship, made an early statement with a birdie on the opening hole to go 1-up.  Walker, who had trouble with #2 in previous rounds, responded with a birdie of his own to get back to all square.   Walker, who has made plenty of birdies this week, woudl continue that with birdies on #7 and #8 to go 2-up.  Lyons got it right back, however, with a birdie of his own on the 9th to get it back to 1-down and with two solid pars on 10 and 11 would get it back to all square.  Walker would pour in a birdie on 13 and then another one on 14 to go 2-up and command a lead he would not relinquesh this time around.  Walker would go on to win, 3 and 2, setting up a semi-final match with Mike Mehran Sunday morning.

(2) Joe Ryon VS (7) Brian Konishi

Joe Ryon would continue his great play into the afternoon and had an advantage after Konishi would not have much of a break if any from the morning with his 19-hole win.  Ryon would capitalize on this, building a quick 4-up lead after five holes of play.  Konishi would settle down and into the match ,winning two holes and getting it back to 2-down after 10 holes of play.  Ryon would never really let Konishi get any closer, making some solid pars and winning, 4 and 3.

(3) Jason Meijers VS (6) Hardeep Dhani

The two youngest players in the field squared off in a quarterfinal match on Saturday afternoon and both players made par on the three opening holes.  Dhani would play some solid golf on the front nine, going out in 2-under par 34, to build a 2-up lead heading into the back nine.  Dhani would make his 3rd birdie of the day on #10 to get all the way to 3-up.  Meijers, a tough competitor, would birdie the 11th hole for the 2nd time on Saturday to cut the lead to only two holes.  Dhani would play like a veteran, playing solid, safe, smart shots down the stretch and making par after par and refusing to make any mistakes and thus forcing Meijers to make birdies to get back into the match.  Meijers would play equally as solid, but could not muster any birdies down the stretch.  Dhani, who made 3 birdies and no bogeys in this match, closed it out on #16, winning 3 and 2.


(4) Phil Walker VS (8) Mike Mehran

The first semi-final match would see Phil Walker jump out to an early lead of 1-up thanks to a birdie on the par-three 3rd hole.  Mike Mehran of San Diego would waste no time, however, making back-to-back birdies on holes 4 and 5 to change the hole deficit to a hole advantage, being up one.  Walker would win the 7th with a par, and then get it back to 1-up thanks to a birdie on #10.  Just like on the front nine, Mehran would win holes 11 and 12 to turn a 1-hole deficit into a 1-hole advantage.  Mehran’s birdie on 12 would be his last of the day however, and bogeys on 13, 14, 15, and 16 would see Walker jump into the finals, winning 2 and 1.  It what sets up to be a promising match, Walker has made approximately 20 birdies so far this week and will try to lean on that firepower in the final.

(2) Joe Ryon VS (6) Hardeep Dhani

This match had a little bit of everything, exact a halved hole which would come to the match for the first time on the 9th hole!  Dhani claimed the 1st, 3rd, and 5th holes while Ryon would win the 2nd, 4th, 6th, 7th, and 8th to turn in 2-up.  Dhani then birdied #10 and #12 to get the match to all even.  After both players tied with pars on 13 and 14, Ryon would go 1-up with a par on the 473 yard par-four 15th hole.  Dhani hit a great approach to try to even the match on 16, but unfortunately hit the flag and winding up 20 feet from the hole.  Playing #17 with a 1-up advantage, Ryon would close the door, hitting his 3rd shot to 2-feet from the cup.  When Dhani’s 20-foot birdie bid just slid past the edge, Ryon would calmly knock in his birdie to win, 2 and 1.

CONSOLATION MATCH (6) Hardeep Dhani VS (8) Mike Mehran

In the consolation match, Mike Mehran would get out to an early lead after winning the 1st hole with a par.  Hardeep would birdie the 2nd hole to pull to even.  Mehran would pull back to even on 13, but Dhani would birdie 14, 15, and 16 to close out his match in style, winning, 3 and 2 to claim 3rd place.

FINAL MATCH – (2) Joe Ryon VS (4) Phil Walker

The final match looked to be a great one.  Ryon, a ball-striker’s ball-striker going up against the leader of the event in birdies, Phil Walker.  Walker, who made some 20 birdies the first four rounds, just didn’t have enough bullets left in the gun in the final match.  Needing a 10-footer for birdie on #10 to try to pull even after Ryon built a 1-up lead, the putt just slid past the hole.  After conceding the 11th hole with Ryon going 2-up, Walker had another opportunity to cut into the lead with a 10-footer on #12 but it just slid past.  Quickly three down entering the 13th hole, Walker left his 25-footer for birdie just short of the cup.  Ryon, meanwhile, was doing just what he needed to do by playing smart and making pars.  Walker would remain in the match on #14 and #15 by holing key par saves to tie Ryon who was now dormie 3 with three to play.  When Walker’s 15-foot birdie bid on #16 slid past the cup, Ryon became the 2014 San Diego County Match Play Champion, winning 3 and 2.

Phil Walker played some amazing golf this week, overcoming a ten (10) in the stroke play qualifier and making more than 20 birdies throughout the weekend.  Ryon, an eccentric ball-striker who literally has all the shots, was so dominant that no match he played in got to the 18th hole.  Ryon was relaxed, calm, and cool all weekend long and his game showed no weakness.   Congratulations to Joe Ryon of Carlsbad, your 2014 San Diego County Match Play Champion!