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Woodcreek's fourth Rose Cup equals Diamond Oaks

By: Jeffrey Weidel, Special to The Press-Tribune
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As assistant pro Curtis Wood was leaving the Woodcreek pro shop late Saturday morning, he was reminded to take the crystal trophy that would later that day be awarded to the winner of the Rose Cup. “Why should I bring it with me, it’s only going to stay in my truck because I’ll be bringing it right back here,” Wood said as he headed over to Diamond Oaks to represent defending champion Woodcreek. Although only kidding at the time, Wood’s words proved prophetic. He and the 11 other Woodcreek players pieced together an unspectacular, yet extremely solid effort in edging Sierra View Country Club for the 10th annual Rose Cup, a Ryder Cup-like event played among the four Roseville golf courses. Trailing first-day host Sierra View after Friday’s opening round, Woodcreek rallied on Saturday in accumulating 49 points for a one-point victory over its country club rivals, who they edged a year ago by a mere one-half point. Diamond Oaks took third (42.5) and Timber Creek was fourth (40.5). Only Phil Ratty had an individual first place finish for Woodcreek in Saturday’s match play among foursomes. Yet the key was getting plenty of seconds, some thirds and zero fourth-place finishes (one point) as Woodcreek pulled even with Diamond Oaks in registering its fourth Rose Cup crown. “We were 3 ½ points down going into today, so to come back like we did was great,” said Wood, who placed second among the pros. “We didn’t have any ones, our guys played very consistent.” Ratty accumulated eight total points over the two days and teammate Brian Arthur had 7 1/2 for Woodcreek, who in a show of spirit had four club members caddy in traditional all-white attire, including Mike Watson and his son, Mike Watson, Jr. A former prep standout at Oakmont High and later UC Davis, Arthur was playing his first Rose Cup in nearly seven years. “This is a real team atmosphere, just like the Ryder Cup where everyone is pulling for each other,” Arthur said. Hosting on the second day where two-thirds of the points are decided, Diamond Oaks pro Scott Prenez felt confident his team could pull out a victory on its home course like it had twice before. “Give Woodcreek credit, they just played steady all day long. Slow and steady sometimes wins the race,” Prenez said. While the four head pros played each other in the opening round, it was their assistants who took over on day two. Taking top honors was Nick White of Sierra View, who had a dazzling round with six birdies and shot a 5-under 67, believed to be a Rose Cup record. Sierra View head pro Jim Salazar had a first-place finish on Friday and teammates Vern Mitzel and Wendell Phillips both had seven points overall. Steve Parino and Tim Hill of Diamond Oaks each picked up 7 ½ points, while Fernando Rodriguez earned seven points for Timber Creek. “What I like about the Rose Cup is you see some familiar faces every year and we’re all getting to know each other and really enjoying the camaraderie,” Timber Creek head pro Mark Gouger said. “The guys who come back year after year really love it. The Rose Cup is something special.” Jeffrey Weidel is the former sports editor of The Press-Tribune. He can be reached at skiweidel@yahoo.com.