Sunday’s Keeper Kup Finale makes it evident that the Keepers Estuary has been subject to global warming as the scoring indicates our little habitat was in a full boil with some folkloric performances. This event historically takes net 67 to 69 to take home the Keepers Flag-only Doc Keller has bested that in a Finale in the last seven years.
This year three Keepers moved the line like Bob Beamon at the 1968 Mexico Olympics creating a standard that might just take another 21 years to replicate. And Rockville doesn’t even have altitude in to explain this.
The early torrid pace was set by Howard “Stogie I” Wollner who carded a 41-38-79 for Net 65. Howard has spent the last month working through some swing and mental iterations with his team that have apparently kicked in. Four birdies in a five hole stretch from 10 to 14 on the inward nine had Howard sitting comfortably at the scorer’s table working on his acceptance speech.
Artie “The Sundance Kid” Aronoff ruined that with a 35-39-74 for Net 62 that set a bar no one would have ever dreamed of. As you can see below his 35 on the front nine included birdies on 4, 6, and 8 before moving into cruise mode with six pars on the back on the way to a career best score of 74.
Howie “The Quiet Assassin” Stein already had the Lead Dog Trophy in hand going into the Finale and was determined to finish the job properly. The word spread like a wild Komanche grass fire that he had five birdies in the outward half to make the turn at 4-under par. Not leaving anything to chance Q.A. birdied the two three-pars on the back to couple his 34 with 36 for a Gross 68 that bested the entire field’s Net scores except the aforementioned duo. His Net 62 tied Sundance and nailed down the Year-Long Keepers Kup by 42 furlongs with a total of 4780 Kup Points.
The rest of the field actually played at a normal Finale clip. Kevin “I’m All Better” Bass shot net 69 followed by Steve “I Finally Got My Range Swing to the Course” Lerman with net 70, Paul “Pablo” Cohen with Net 71, and Don “The Don” Fisher, Rich “Kojak” Greenberg, and Jon “Majors” Bortz with Net 72’s.
As you can see below the winning spoils were quite lucrative for the top eight Keepers Kup Finishers as well as the Finale Top Three.
Our 50/50 raffle random drawing made four Keepers happy paying off $210 per man. Through the generosity of all who participated, we raised an additional $900 for beneficiary organizations to our Year End Military Donations-Folds of Honor, SMGA/Wounded Vets, Israeli Defense Wounded Veterans, and the Links To Freedom.
Sunday’s kompetition was a fitting ending to the Keepers Season. We appreciate the work of Konnor and the golf staff in helping put on this three-ring circus all year. Special thanks to all of you whose enthusiastic participation in our Keepers events through the year make the Keepers program something special.
The Keepers Match Play is a season long haul, four months of grueling individual matches in three divisions based on handicap range. It is a simple formula, win and move on. By the end of August the Augusta, Bethpage Black, and Pebble Beach divisions had all seen their share of nail biters and extra hole matches but it eventually came down to a Final Three to play for the koveted, quasi-Wedgewood, Keepers Match Play Trophy.
In the bracket championship matches in August, Howie “The Quiet Assassin” Stein edged out Marc “Fine Grind” Birnbaum in the Augusta Division. Paul “Pablo” Cohen took out Marc “The Bronx Bomber” Fink in the Bethpage Black Division. Barry “How Did I Get Here” Minkoff outlasted Ronnie “Clean and Green” Greenbaum to win the Pebble Beach Division. So the stage was now set for the Keepers Match Play-Final Three in early September.
This titanic struggle was played on the North Course on a steamy day as an Almost Skins 5-3-1 Match Format where the best net score on a hole earns the player 5 points, second best net score 3 points, and not so best net score 1 point. Total points for the 18 holes is the Match Play Champion for 2019.
Bountiful Kash Sweeps, a bunch of Keepers Kup Points, and the slick trophy were on the line today. The course conditions were a bit soft and the greens, by North Course standards, were disarmingly slow. This was a two-edged sword, the downhill putts did not trundle six to eight feet by as they will do on any given Sunday and the uphill putts often left the guys with a nerve racking, furry five-footer which never seemed to have enough enthusiasm to go in.
It was obvious from the opening holes that he who made putts won big points and he who missed putts would be disappearing in the rear view mirror. Barry picked up his new moniker, “Mr. Klutch”, when he bagged a 25-footer across the 3rd green to make an unlikely par-net-birdie to grab the lead for the first time. Against all historical precedence, he never relinquished that advantage the rest of the way.
There was plenty of parrying the rest of the front nine but lack of consistent putting kept any of them from establishing a sizeable advantage. There were two balls in regulation on both 6 and 7 but there were only two pars to show for it. Howie hit a monster drive on 8 to about 75 yards and put a lawn dart to three feet to make the only natural birdie on the front side. But 9 rendered a full house-a bogey, a double, and a triple-with more sloppy green side play. At the halfway point Barry led 31 to 25 and 25 for the other two.
The inward nine started with a flicker of hope for the Silent Assassin as he made the Sportcenter Top Ten with an unbelievable recovery from the face of the cross bunker on #10, hitting it to 18 feet and draining the putt for another birdie to pull within 2 points of the lead.
But Pablo was having none of this, he laced a drive to center, an approach to the back on the 11th green and two putted for a winning par to get himself to just one point behind.
Mr. Klutch used the advantage tee on 12 to his advantage and followed a massive drive with a steady hybrid approach and two putts for a 4 net 3 to reclaim a 4 point advantage.
Two three-putts on 13 after hitting the putting surface and a gaggle of net bogies on 14 left the spreads pretty much as they were. More shadow boxing on 15 and 16 and the match moved to the pivotal 17th Tee with all kompetitors within 5 points-Barry 50-Howie 49-Paul 45. Stroking on both of the final holes Barry and Paul had to feel pretty good about things, but then there is that little wet penalty area that fronts the green that would have to be contended with. The plot lines and neck lines were thickening.
Pablo was the first to strike following a solid drive to 105 out on 17 and heeded advice of counsel to hit his short iron safely 35 feet behind the dangerous front right pin. Knowing a 4 for 3 was in the offing, Howie hit the shot of the inward half when he stuck his 85-yard approach 7 feet behind the cup making a natural birdie a real possibility. Barry hit his approach in the water but but from a drop some 75 yards out he kovered the flag to 3 feet to steal a bogey net par which would earn him some valuable points. Pablo handled the downhill approach putt to kick-in range and when Howie failed to convert his birdie putt the three were off to the final tee with the score line: Mr. Klutch 52-Q.A. 51-Pablo (a.k.a. Yosemite Sam) 50.
This is where Barry solidified the new moniker, he smashed his tee ball from the forward tee to 125 in the left Billy grass and then carefully managed his approach to the front right fringe 75 feet from the hole. Both of his kompetitors foozled at least one shot on the way to the green and by the time the putting was to transpire Barry was sitting 5 feet above the hole with only a two-putt needed for the bogey-net-par which would seal the deal. True to form Barry turned to me at this point and said, “At least I am not coming in third”. Now that is konfidence for you.
The rest is history, Mr. Klutch did indeed make the net par to win the final hole outright.
Game-Set-and Match with 57 points.
Kongratulations to all three guys….it was a spirited and feisty afternoon of golf and a deserving champion emerged.
The final takeaways from this year’s Keepers Match Play were:
1st Place Barry Minkoff-(57) Points $300 Kash Sweeps and 200 Kup Points and the Match Play Trophy
2nd Place Howie Stein-(54) Points $200 Kash Sweeps and 100 Kup Points
3rd Place Paul Cohen-(51) Points $100 Kash Sweeps and 50 Kup Points
Tied4th Marc Birnbaum, Marc Fink, and Ronnie Greenbaum $50 Kash Sweeps and 25 Kup Points
It is time for the Grand Daddy Of The All, the Keepers Kup Finale, payday in the Year-Long Keepers Kup Race for 2019. The Keepers Kup will come down to one last 18 holes of net kompetition to be held on the North Course on Sunday September 15th with morning tee times from 8:35 to 10:35. You don’t want to miss this opportunity to kash in from our final event of the year.
We will reset the season long Keepers Kup Standings as of September 12th, everyone playing in the Finale has a chance to get into the money. When the dust is settled, the top eight players in the Keepers Kup Standings will the big sweeps and Kopper Keepers Kups go to the top three in the Final Kup Standings. There is also the day kompetition which awards an Embroidered Keepers Flag to the winner of the Keepers Kup Finale Event along with sweeps to the top three finishers in Sunday’s round.
Going into the Finale Event the top five in the Kup Standings kontrol their own destiny-if they win the Finale Event they win the Keepers Kup. The top twelve in the standings going in can win the Keepers Kup with a little help from their friends.
Anyone playing in the Finale Event has a chance to move up into the top eight at the end of the day and kash in on the generous money sweeps for the year long kompetition.
Year Long Keepers Kup Prizes:
Kopper Trophies for the top three in the Keepers Kup Standings
Kash Sweeps- 1st $500, 2nd $350, 3rd 250, 4th $175, 5th $125, 6th 100, 7th $75, 8th 50
Keepers Kup Finale Prizes:
Embroidered Keepers Flag for low net of the day
Kash Sweeps- 1st $100, 2nd 50, 3rd $25 (3 low nets of the day)
Separately we will have a voluntary Folds of Honor/SMGA/IDF Veterans/Links to Freedom Players Pool opportunity for kash prizes. Half the money goes to the pool for our annual military charities donation and half goes to the winners.
It will be e a 50/50 raffle with four winning raffle tickets being picked from the Keepers bowl. The tickets are $15 each or 4 for $50-buy as many as you want. Remember half the money goes to the charities. You do not have to be present at the Finale to play the 50/50 raffle-if you want in on this you can mail a check made out to “The Keepers” to the Commish and he will mail you back your raffle tickets.
Don’t miss out of the fun….sign up through the Keepers Kosher K below.
Our last Keepers weekday event of the year turned out to be a bit of an existential affair. In Blind Pairs you pick your partner to play a 9-Hole Net Best Ball on the North Course not knowing your opponent until after the play is done.
The arbitrage began over a kook-out dinner when we picked opponents from the Keepers recyclable sack for a hole-by-hole match of cards for hole points (3 for each hole won and 1 for each hole tied).
For an added rub-of-the-green element there were bonus points available to the two balls closest to the pin in regulation on holes 2, 4, 6 and 8 (2 points for the closest and 1 for the second closest). Each teams total of match and bonus points would go toward determining the winners.
Alan Levine and Keith Eig, who shot a net 32 best ball, drew Neal Bobys and Monroe Brett out of the sack, who carded net 38. Once the cards were matched Levine-Eig had won 6 holes outright and tied another for a total of 19 match points. Kaptin Keith’s radar iron play on #2 and #6 added an additional 4 bonus points to give them a total of 23 points for a runaway win over the second place finishers.
A bevy of teams tied for second with 17 points. Howard Postal and Dennis Speisman bested Nathan Greenbaum and Chet Levine 17 to 8. Michael Levy and Yale Kaplan took the legal team of Greenberg and Greenberg 14 to 11 and added 3 bonus points for Michael’s sharpshooting on 8 and Yale’s second closest on 6 to reach the 17 point mark. Allen Schwartz and Rick Brecher got 16 points off of Rusty Minkoff and Billy Burak and added a bonus point for Terp Station’s second closest on #2 for their 17 points. Fifth place with 16 points went to Len Goldman and Moe Dweck who got 15 in their card match with Marc Fink and Arnie Miller and added a bonus with the Mishner’s second closest on the 4th hole.
It did take a while to work through all the kalkulations but by the time dessert spoons were resting komfortably the results were in.
Prizes Per Man:
1st Alan Levine and Keith Eig- 150 Kup Points and $100 Kash Sweeps
T-2nd Howard Postal and Dennis Speisman- 90 Kup Points and $25 Kash Sweeps
T-2nd Michael Levy and Yale Kaplan- 90 Kup Points and $25 Kash Sweeps
T-2nd Alan Schwartz and Rick Brecher- 90 Kup Points and $25 Kash Sweeps
5th Len Goldman and Moe Dweck- 30 Kup Points
Thanks to our Keepers Kroupiers Konnor Farrell and Grant Strawoet for adeptly managing this kompetition and the arbitration of the results.
For our last weekday event the Tournament Kommittee has thrown an entertainng bit of blind man’s bluff into the mix. Blind Pairs lets you pick your own partner to play in this 9-Hole Two-Man Team Net Best Ball Kompetition against an opponent to be determined later.
It takes place on Tuesday August 27th with a shotgun start at 5:00 p.m. on the North Course. Getting 80% of your Course Handicap from the tees you are playing, each team plays the 9 holes and puts their net best ball for each hole on the scorecard.
When all the kompetitors are done we will konvene in the Men’s Card Room to sort out the results. All the cards will be thrown into a hat and Vanna will pull the cards two at a time to determine the matches. The cards will then be matched hole-by-hole for 3 points a hole. There will be bonus points available for closest to the hole in regulation on four holes. Each teams 9-hole points plus bonus points will determine their Blind Pairs score.
Once all the matches are arbitrated the teams with the most points will be your Blind Pairs Winners. Kup Points and Kash Sweeps to the top finishers as indicated below.
Prizes Per Man:
Keepers Kup Points: 1st (150), 2nd (120), 3rd (90), 4th (60), 5th (30)
Keepers Kash Sweeps: 1st $100, 2nd $50, 3rd $25
Dinner will be available from a slimmed down menu provided by the catering folks ahead of the event. We will take your food orders early in the week and your food will be waiting when we konvene in the Men’s Card Room for the Results Session.
Sounds simple enough….just enough mystery to make this loads of fun. Sign up with your partner through the Kosher K below. If you don’t have a partner sign up alone and we will find you a suitable support partner.
The Keepers will once again dedicate this First Tee Mentor Outing in honor of the memory of a good friend who avidly participated and supported these outings. This year we dedicate the outing to the fond memories we have of Gary Jonas to whom the community service aspect of The Keepers was always front of mind. We cannot help but think fondly Gary’s smile and enthusiasm interacting with the kids as we continue the tradition of the First Tee Mentor Outing in 2019.
In keeping with the our tradition, The Keepers will hold our annual First Tee Mentor Outing on Thursday August 15th from 11 to 3 pm. This is a fun day of “being a grandparent” to 36 wonderful kids from the Greater Washington DC First Tee Programs. The kids age from 8 to 17 but all share two things in common-they love golf and know how to comport themselves in a golfing environment.
Last year when we raised over $3,000 to donate to the First Tee Programs of Greater Washington through the generosity of the Woodmont membership. You can make a donation through your Woodmont account to sponsor a kid for this event for just $50. The cost of this event is totally underwritten by The Keepers, so the full proceeds of these sponsorship donations will go to The First Tee Of Greater Washington.
Woodmont Members can support The First Tee programs with a sponsorship donation by clicking below
Keepers and Woodmont Members can participate as a volunteer/mentor by clicking below
The outing begins at 11 am with a series of clinics on the range and in the Sidney Harman Short Game area. Woodmont Staff will run the clinics and all you have to do as a volunteer is be supportive and lend a mentoring hand when needed. A picnic lunch with the kids from around 12:30 to 1:00 in front of the Golf Shop is then followed by some golf when we take them out for four holes of real mentor time on the course. It all wraps up around 3:00 pm.
Some action shots from the 2018 First Tee Mentor Celebration
Come join us for the event…..you will be amazed what this First Tee Program does for these kids and what spending an afternoon with these refreshing young people will do for you.
We had 20 teams of Keepers participate in our Third Annual Pinehurst Glenmorangie, a novel two-man format which blended a bit of Scramble and a hint of Alternate Shot into an original tasteful single malt offering.
Picking their own partners the guys had to hit their drives, swap balls for the second shot, and then pick the best result to play the rest of the way into the hole alternate shot. The objective for the day is low team net and, as in the previous iterations, it would take something in the mid-sixties to be in the money.
This year we put away the crayons and went full Silicon Valley with the state-of-the-art Golf Genius Electronic Scoreboard. Konsidering recent Woodmont escapades with technology this was no small feat.
Playing the New North Course at it’s full volume due to an overnight deluge, the play was very kompetitive with the winning margin being only one shot. Bobby “Jack Lalane” Fogel and Neal “The Nat Kloser” Bobys threw down a net 32 on the front nine and then put the foot to the floor with a net eagle on 11 and a birdie on 12 before finishing birdie-birdie on the last two holes for net 32 on the back on their way to the winning 64.
Finishing second were the duo of Allen “Kortoisone” Zweig and Yale “Ivy League” Kaplan with net 65. They torched the front side with five birdies for a net 31 but lost a little momentum with a net bogie on 13 before kompiling 3 birdies on the back for a net 65 total.
“Kaptin Keith” Eig and Alan “Don’t Mess With Me” Levine had a fine net 68 to take third, followed by Howard “USPS” Postal and Nate “Money” Greenbaum with net 69 for fourth. Two teams tied fifth at Net 70-Artie “Don’t Write Me Off” Aronoff and Daryl “Hall and Oates” Shapiro and Mike “I’m Buying” Selis and Mark “The Historian” Miller.
The Prizes (per man):
1st Place at Net 64 Neal Bobys/Bobby Fogel 300 Kup Points and $100 Kash Sweeps
2nd Place at Net 65 Allen Zweig/Yale Kaplan 200 Kup Points and $50 Kash Sweeps
3rd Place at Net 68 Keith Eig/Alan Levine 150 Kup Points and $25 Kash Sweeps
4th Place at Net 69 Howard Postal/Nate Greenbaum 100 Kup Points
T-5th Place at Net 70 Artie Aronoff/Daryl Shapiro and Mike Selis/Mark Miller 25 Kup Points
Thanks to the 40 guys who participated and to Konnor and his gang administration of today’s event.