How bad was it at the Industry Hills golf course Tuesday?
"It was so bad," said Redlands senior Dave Stockton, "I hit my driver right down the middle of the fairway, and I'm in a bunker. The course is insane."
How grueling? Said Indio golf Coach Dennis Juhola: "Look at the undulations in the greens. Look at the wind. This course is totally insane."
It was so tough, so windy, so ... insane that Westlake's Chris Zambri finished his round with a 30-foot birdie putt and a bloody nose. "It just happened," Zambri said through a towel, dabbing away. "I was just walking up the green."
Zambri took the bloody nose with a grin, another minor distraction considering the round he had just fashioned. His 3-over-par 75 was the low round in Westlake's five-man score of 394, good enough for a second consecutive Southern Section team title.
Zambri's bloody nose reflected the strangeness of Tuesday's round at Industry Hills. Only 14 of 72 golfers broke 80. Gusty conditions at the difficult Eisenhower course necessitated precision play, especially off the tees.
Jimmy Chang, who played on last year's team, shot a 78 for Westlake after going just 1 over on the sheltered front nine. Chris' brother, Mike Zambri, shot 79, while teammate John Darin had a 80 after shooting 2 over on the front. Freshman Charlie Wi went 2 over on the more difficult and wind-swept back nine and completed the Westlake score with 82.
"I'm happy with the way I played, but I hate these greens," said Chris Zambri, a junior, who also was his team's low man in winning last year's team title at La Cumbre in Santa Barbara. "Now we get to go home."
Home is North Ranch Country Club, where Westlake is favored to win the CIF-Southern California Golf Assn. championship in two weeks. The top four teams from Tuesday's tournament--Westlake, Indio, Huntington Beach and Beverly Hills--advance to the SCGA at North Ranch, where Westlake has not lost a team match in four years. "I'd say we have a 10-15 stroke advantage, strictly from course knowledge," Chris Zambri said.
The Eisenhower course at Industry Hills was uncomfortable for Agoura, which failed to have a player break 80. The low was Derek London's 81, the high Rob Price's 94--22 over par. Agoura finished 11th out of 12 teams at 436, 76 strokes over par.
Los Altos' Bob May, who shot a 1-under 71, was the medalist. Saturday he broke the Edgewood Country Club record with a 6-under 66 and won the American Junior Golf Assn. Lake Tahoe Memorial. The 66 came off the championship blue tees and is a record for all players.
But May's score Tuesday could not haul Los Altos, at 411, into the top four. Finishing five strokes behind Westlake at 399 was Indio, which prepared for Industry Hills by playing the stadium course at PGA West in La Quinta. PGA West's stadium course, designed by Pete Dye, is rated America's toughest.
"We played the stadium course, and this place is tougher," said Juhola. "I'm telling you, this course is insane."
Indio's Joe Stack shot a 74, thought he could have shot a 69 and still said that Industry Hills is "extremely difficult."
Nine strokes behind Indio, at 408, was Huntington Beach. Beverly Hills and Santa Barbara San Marcos tied at 409, but Beverly Hills won a playoff for fourth place and will advance to the SCGA.