Bratenahl Prepares for its Golf Comeback
The following is reprinted from The Cleveland Plain Dealer Sunday, April 26, 1925
COUNTRY CLUB BACK IN GOLF TEAM RACE
Equipped With Strongest Club Since 1922
Bratenahl Players Have Designs on District Team Championship
BY HARRY G. McDAVITT
The esprit de corps as far as it concerns the tournament golfers at the Country Club this year has returned to normalcy. The Bratenahl linksmen have their battle lines all drawn up for a finish fight to put their organization back in the center of the royal and ancient’s floodlights.
After two seasons of wearisome toil in the background, while the first fiddles were being see-sawed by Mayfield, Shaker Heights, and Highland, the big noises of 1923 and 1924, Country is awakening from its long period of lethargy and planning the 1925 campaign for the interclub championship with the same courageous spirit that characterized its effective efforts from 1918 to 1922.
The Country Club, the links that occupy the wide-open spaces in the vicinity of Lake Shore Boulevard at Eddy Road can rightly be called the home of golf in Cleveland. It is the oldest golf or country club hereabouts and the first of its class organized in the land put on the map by Moses Cleaveland.
Country Club was a leader in competitive golf until 1923 when many of its high-ranking players took their bags out east and parked them more or less permanently at the Kirtland Country Club.
For two seasons the Country Club combatants have been busy developing a new shock punch. It is said that preparations have been completed and that this season the Bratenahl golfers are going out gunning after the local and district team championship – going out to get ‘em in an old-time way.
Gordon Yule, Country Club ace since 1919 and captain of the team last season, is expected to again carry the heavy burden this year - that of playing the No. 1 position. Yule led the team in scoring in 1924, in spite of the fact that he encountered none but the stars.
An extra kick has been given to the team by the acquisition of Harold C. Sayle, 1924 captain at Canterbury.
Country Club, prepared to send into this season’s interclub titular scramble the strongest team that it has rounded up since seven or eight of its crack players hit the trail for Kirtland in the spring of 1923. When the local interclub field of ninety-six players tee up at the country club on May 27 and at Shaker Heights on June 10 for the thirty-six-hole qualifying round that will determine the clubs’ positions inf the two divisions this year. Country Club will command just as much respect as Mayfield, Shaker Heights, or Highland, commonly referred to as the “strong” teams.
On the Country Club interclub roster, this season, are such well-known sharpshooters as Gordon Yule, 1924 team captain, Harold C. Sayle, the 1924 team captain at the Canterbury Golf Club, C. E. Dangler, Dr. Secord Large, Bill Collier, George Comey, Hi Hall, Spence Murfey, Norman C. King, Johnny Wilson, and George Eichelburger.
The team captain for 1925 has not been appointed. As a rule, Country Club’s captain is appointed by the chairman of the green committee. Arthur Climo is putting in his second year in that role. Country Club golfers specialize in the maintenance of traditions and the preservation of standards. The Bratenahl club’s set policy is to pick its team. Other clubs in the district have taken up the practice of determining their line-up on a conservative basis. It is hard to decide which system is best for Country Club in its time has enjoyed just as much success as any of its rivals.
Finishes Third in ‘24
In the 1924 team race, Country Club finished third in the qualifying round at Mayfield with an aggregate gross total of 521 strokes and land in the first division. In the seven-round preliminary test, Country Club won three and lost three matches, tying with Kirtland and Canterbury at the .500 mark. Country Club scored a total of 65 points and held the opposition to 48. In the first round of the championship elimination series, Country Club bit the dust under Willowick’s attack, 12 to 6.
However, Country Club’s season did not go down in the archives as a complete flop. Capt. Gordon Yule led his sextet to a brilliant 10 to 5 victory over Kirtland, its closest rival. The match was played at the Westwood Club and Yule, C. E. Dangler, Hi Hall, and Dr. Secord Large outclassed their Kirtland friends. In the last round, at Oakwood, Country Club held Mayfield, 9 to 7, without its regular team on the links. . . .
Wilson and Large May Help
Johnny Wilson, who did not play much last year, is expected to prove a valuable acquisition this season. Dr. Secord Large has promised to play at Country Club, although he has a chance to play for Kirtland.
The first interclub race was conducted in 1918, the year the Cleveland District Golf Association started to function. Country Club was runner-up to Mayfield that season but won the championship in 1919 and 1920. Mayfield regained the title in 1921 and the following season, the two teams staged a finished battle for permanent possession of the Cleveland Athletic Club cup, emblematic of the interclub championship. They tied at the end of the regular season and Mayfield acquired the trophy by defeating Country Club in a post-season match. Members of the Country Club team that year were Eddie Bruch, Mike Wilson, S. L. Murfey, K. B. Wick, N. C. King, Gordon Yule, Robert Leitch, and Bill Collier.
The next season when the Kirtland Club entered a team in the tournament, Country Club lost its punch for Bruch, Wick, Wilson, Dr. Secord Large, Carl Lohman, Jack Blossom, Spence Murfey, and others of the Country Club brigade went out and played for Kirtland. Last season Bob Seltch went over to Mayfield.
But Country Club finally has fully recovered and from on is tipped to play a leading role. Country Club’s only worry this season concerns the possibility of Yule, no being available for all matches. Gordon will have much to do with the activities of the new Mentor Headlands Golf-Country Club this summer and may have to divide his time between Country Club and Mentor Headlands.