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ON THE GREEN | CHIP SHOTS

Effort Begins to Keep El Toro Course Open

May 24, 2000|PETER YOON and MARTIN BECK | TIMES STAFF WRITERS

El Toro Memorial Golf Course dodged a bullet Tuesday when the Orange County Board of Supervisors voted to negotiate with the U.S. Navy for a master lease for the former Marine base.

The course, which opened to the public last July after 50 years as a military course, was in danger of being closed because of jurisdictional issues. Wally Bradley, head professional at the course since 1964, said regular users and employees will be relieved.

"It will make a lot of these people happy," Bradley said Tuesday, between taking tee time reservations for the Memorial Day weekend. "People have been asking every day, 'What's going to happen?' "

The possibility of losing one of the few moderately priced courses in South County was a cause for concern, said Ken Shannon, tournament chairman of the 600-member men's club.

"I would think that most golfers like myself are ecstatic about the fact that they have a low-cost alternative to golf here in South Orange County," Shannon said.

Bradley said the course has never been in better shape. The greens, which had some problems in the fall because of aeration during unseasonably warm weather, have recovered and the fairways are more than acceptable for a course that charges $30 for a prime weekend tee time.

The cart paths, however, are in bad shape, making for a bumpy ride. Because the course has been in limbo, Bradley said, repairs of the paths have been of the patchwork nature.

"Who wants to spend $100,000 on cart paths with the possibility the gates will close?" he said.

OC QUALIFICATIONS

Matt Schreiber of Laguna Niguel, a junior at Aliso Niguel High, is one of six county residents who survived the first round of U.S. Open qualifying at seven Southern California sites over the last week.

Schreiber, a three-time All-Pacific Coast League selection, shot one-under-par 70 May 17 at Aliso Viejo Golf Club to earn a spot in the sectional qualifier June 5 at Merced Golf and Country Club in Daly City.

Phillip Luong of Garden Grove won the qualifier with a 67. Justin Boatman of Aliso Viejo and Perry Parker of Dana Point each shot 70 and also advanced to the sectional.

Sun Yoon Kim of Aliso Viejo shot one-over-par 73 Monday at Industry Hills and was among the nine who advanced from that local qualifier. Rob Kaas of Huntington Beach advanced with a four-under-par 68 Monday at Merced.

Those who advanced to Merced will be playing for spots in the U.S. Open, which will be June 15-18 at Pebble Beach. The USGA will announce the number of available spots when all local qualifying is complete.

PUBLINX DEADLINE

Today is the deadline to enter the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship. Entries must be received by the USGA by 2 p.m. Entry forms are available online at www.usga.org

Other approaching USGA deadlines are May 31 for the U.S. Women's Open; June 7 for the U.S. Junior Amateur and the U.S. Girls Junior; June 21 for the U.S. Women's Amateur; and July 5 for the U.S. Amateur.

All applications are available on the USGA website.

NEW PRICES

Tustin Ranch Golf Club announced that it is introducing a replay rate of $40 Monday through Wednesday and $50 on Thursdays and Fridays for those who pay full price for 18 holes.

*

Pelican Hill Golf Club announced special rates for women, seniors and juniors.

Women can play every Tuesday for $99.

Seniors age 55 and older can play Monday-Thursday before 8 a.m. for $99. Juniors 16 and under can play for free two hours after twilight everyday when accompanied by a paying adult.

* EXECUTIVE GROUNDED

The county's Executive Officer is stripped of control over El Toro airport plan. A1

* SUPERVISORS ACT

They vote to push for continued operation of base golf course, other programs. B1

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