Making the Rounds: Folsom golfers drive different paths to first aces

Reid Bulman
Reid Bulman

Folsom’s Reid Bulman and Bob Jeffrey both have a hole-in-one story they can share at parties.

Birthday parties for Reid, at least for a few years; cocktail party for Bob.

Bulman and Jeffrey both made their first ace this month at Empire Ranch using a driver. The similarities drastically diverge after that.

Bulman, 7, a first-grader at Folsom Hills Elementary School who weighs 45 pounds, made his hole in one Oct. 11 at Empire Ranch’s No. 8. It was his second time on a golf course, only the 17th hole he had ever played and the only green he’s hit with his first shot.

“He can only hit it about 70 yards,” said Reid’s father, Chris, who was helping shepherd the group of beginners. “They play every hole from 100 yards. He just happened to get into one. It was the longest and best drive he’s ever hit.”

The ball hit in the middle of the green, Chris said, and rolled about 40 feet into the cup.

When father and son returned home with the news, wife and mother Sarah said, “I’m not sure who was more excited.”

Jeffrey, 52, owner of Premium Heating and Air Conditioning, made his hole in one Oct. 20 at Empire’s No. 10, a 329-yard par-4 that bends to the right around a hill.

He had played golf for more than 25 years without an ace.

“The wind was blowing at my back, which is different than normal (on that hole),” Jeffrey said. “I got it up in the air with a draw.”

His playing partners saw the ball bounce high off the cart path along the right side of the fairway and speculated that it might reach the green, but nobody thought to look in the hole when it couldn’t be found.

“I thought it must have bounced off the hill into the crap,” Jeffrey said.

It was the longest and best drive he’s ever hit.

Chris Bulman on his 7-year-old son Reid’s hole in one

Imagine everyone’s surprise a few minutes later when the first member of the group to look in the hole found it occupied.

“It’s in the friggin’ hole,” Jeffrey said the player yelled.

The race to state

Emilee Hoffman and Brooke Riley were the life of a red-numbers party Monday at Bing Maloney during the opening round of the Sac-Joaquin Section high school girls playoffs.

Hoffman’s 7-under-par 65 that included an eagle on the par-5 11th hole topped Riley’s 68 and was the difference in the Division III team title, with Hoffman’s Vista del Lago edging Riley’s East Union 413-415. Both teams advance to next week’s Masters at the Reserve at Spanos Park.

Hoffman, who will play at Texas, and Northwestern-bound Riley figure to duke it out throughout their final high school postseason that concludes Nov. 17 with the state tournament at Poppy Hills.

Vista del Lago’s Noor Ahmed (72) had the third-best Division III round. Christian Brothers’ Beah Cruz (73) and Inderkum’s Monique Peterson (75) and Amelia Hicks (76) advanced as individuals.

Granite Bay, led by a strong group of freshmen, won the Division I North title at Silverado by eight shots over Sierra Foothill League rival Oak Ridge. Vanessa Richani and ChiSay Arai shared medalist honors with 7-over 79s to lead the Grizzlies, who had a 415. Lexi Perry (83) was low for the Trojans, who had all six players at 90 or better.

Four of the Grizzlies’ top seven players are freshmen, led by Richani. Arai is the team’s lone senior.

289 20th-place score for 36 holes by Auburn’s Brad Kearns in the World Speedgolf Championship

Granite Bay’s girls have won four SFL titles but hadn’t won a section title in the program’s 17 years.

Rocklin (449) and St. Francis (468) also qualified for the Masters. Davis’ Marie Dean (81) was best among individual qualifiers.

In Division II at Teal Bend, Katie Low’s 4-over 76 led McClatchy (472) to the team title. Roseville (496) also advanced. Antelope’s Katie Harris (76) shared medalist honors.

Bear River (484) and Placer (514) advanced from the Division IV tournament at Sierra View. Hannah Prosser (11-over 83) led Bear River and Natalie Pietromonaco (85) was best for Placer.

Et cetera

▪ Arbuckle’s Ben Geyer ( Tour first stage) and Folsom’s Briana Mao (LPGA Tour second stage) advanced to the next stage in their qualifying tournaments.

▪ Auburn’s Brad Kearns finished 20th in the World Speedgolf Championship in Glenview, Ill. He shot a 289 for 36 holes (an 86 in 54 minutes and a 91 in 58 minutes).

▪ Carmichael’s Herb Jensen tied for second, one shot behind San Francisco’s Gary Vanier, in the Northern California Golf Association Super Senior Championship at Valley Hi.

Steve Pajak: 916-326-5526, @Steve_Pajak