Thieves play waiting game at Soboba Springs

“Autumn mornings: sunshine and crisp air, birds and calmness, year’s end and day’s beginnings,” once said Terri Guillemets.

Seems like good ole’ Terri left something out – frost delays, a condition under which golfers are prevented from teeing it up because of possible frost damage to the course. Such was the case on Thursday, Dec. 20, at The Country Club at Soboba Springs where the Third Thursday Thieves, scheduled for an 8 a.m. shotgun, had to wait until 9:30 a.m. when 32 Thieves and guests finally steered their golf carts towards their respective starting holes. That about covers everything Terri had in mind in the above quote except one: birds.

Coots and ducks were all over the place, (they love golf courses), with their little calling cards randomly dotting the Soboba fairways and greens. There was enough of the stuff that I was forced to go to the USGA rule book to look for “feral fecal relief,” so to speak. Turns out that animal droppings are considered to be “loose impediment,” like twigs or pebbles. You can move the droppings, if you really want to, so long as your ball is not moved in the process. And if your ball is covered with the stuff, it’ll cost you a stroke to clean it off unless you are on the putting surface. Further, if your ball lands in a pile of it, it now becomes part of the ball. Good luck with that.

Tournament results: Closest-to-the-pin honors went to Wil Stelts, Perry King, guest Bill O’Brallahan and myself. Richard Del Castillo and three others took 30 putts to complete their round, Richard winning a scorecard playoff to win Fewest Putts. Greg Stigall and Kathy Wright out drove the field to win Long Drive Men/Women, respectively. 

Low net flight A winner was Ramon Baez (71) followed by Tom Bullis and Richard Del Castillo. Perry King’s net 65 gave him flight B first place with Diane Hughart and Bob Throckmorton close behind. 

During the awards ceremony, returning guests Bill and Gail O’Brallahan were recognized. There were many winners in the monthly raffle.

The Third Thursday Thieves, a golf club comprised of members who possess a wide range of golf skill levels, play various local courses the third Thursday of each month. The Thieves next play Moreno Valley Ranch Golf Course on Thursday, Jan. 17. New members and guests are welcome. Contact Mike Sebastian at 

(951) 659-0205 or email

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