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Sunday, June 18, 2017

FATHERS' DAY TOURNAMENT...

On a very hot day where temperatures reached 100+, we had a wonderful response from our members and usual visitors and had over 60 teams including dads who played with more than one kid.... Damon Butcher played with three of his four golfing boys.... that was some workout!

By the mood of the players, you would have thought that it was a normal day at the course, when we all know it wasn't. But the optimism in Elk City has no end! You people are all inspiring!

Here are the results for each flight (the top four and ties in each flight were recognized):

"A"
59 > Rusty & Kelsi Wilson
60 > Gary & Luke Phillips;
         Damon & Bryce Butcher
61 >Paul & Dustin Gunkel
        Jack & Jake Coody




"B"
63 > Rob & Carter Muncrief
        Damon & Brayden Butcher
        Bobby & Blake Johson
        Mark & Mitchell Hudgens
        Charlie & Aaron Kauk




"C"
66 > Bob & Drew Miller
        David & Travis Poole
        Barry & Tate Trotter
67 > Larry & Tony Hudgens
        Damon & Grayson Butcher
        Scott & Aaron Ford
        Chris & Jordan Stark
'       Bob & Casey Miller

"D"
68 > Randy & Brent Morse
        Jeff Donaghey & Billy Bashaw
        Randal Wright & Pete Stover
        Rachel & Haylee Poole





"E"
72 > Rick & Shawn Ezell
        Robert & Nathan Gore
        Frank & Stephen Craven
73 > Ken Howell & Bobby Martin
        Brian & Dex Felch
        Terry Morse & Dustin Martin
        Paul & Sam Firth
        Mike & Conner Carlucci

"F"
75 > Rick & Allison Rainey
76 > Gary Jennings & Jim Womack
        Andrew & Jamie Peffer
77 > Don & Cody Murphey
        Tony & Chad Mikles




This year's Fathers' Day Pics for the annual card featured David & Travis Poole and Michael & Nathan Womack.




















For all pictures, click Father's Day Photos

Sunday, June 4, 2017

PUTTING YOUR BEST FOOT FORWARD!

We all wish that the tornado of May 16 had been a bad dream that we all had, a nightmare. But, as it turned out, it was very real and very damaging, especially to a community where everyone knows each other. It is like it struck a big family, and in many ways it did, and because of that, we all saw how a family can get up after being knocked down... but not knocked out. How very grateful I am that there wasn't a fatality in "our family".

The girls at the snack bar may have very well saved me, several golfers and the maintenance crew. It was because of their vigilant attitude that I went out on the course to ask all golfers and maintenance crew to leave the course before sending our snack bar staff home early, in case the storm hit as it was predicted by the weatherman. I know very well that had it not been for the Arine, Alisha and Alyssa, I would not have paid as much attention to the weather and would have stayed working in the office late in the afternoon, when I couldn't be interrupted. What a mistake that would have been, as in the process, we lost the clubhouse, our rental barn and over 150 trees, inventory, range balls, range mats, and God knows what else we'll find missing.

The next day, although I knew that our clubhouse and several of our members' homes had been destroyed, and although I remember that we got busy taking things out that could be salvaged into a storage place, Wednesday and Thursday following the destructing tornado, is a blur: it is like it was the reaction we needed to have as we made decision after decision, and always being in the "same page" with others, like programmed robots.

Without details, I remember several of our members coming to help other members or help us at the club to pack and move things out of the rubble... Larry & Lana Hudgens, Allen & Kathy Robinson, Debbie Dunn, Bob Miller, the Culver kids, Tim DeWitt and son Conner, all of the members of the board who were in town, even those who had been hit in their own homes, and several others, including some volunteers that I had never seen or met. 

Then, it all struck at once, Brad Gilbert called an emergency meeting of the board with Ed Hughes and myself present. What should we do about the immediate future? Should we pause and recover before continuing operations, or, should we continue operations while we recovered? It was a "slam-dunk": WE ARE GOING TO CONTINUE OPERATIONS AND DO WHATEVER IS NECESSARY TO SERVE OUR MEMBERS AND COMMUNITY OF GOLFERS. THIS TORNADO HIT US HARD, BUT IT DID NOT PUT US OUT. FIRST ORDER OF BUSINESS IS "MAKE THE OIL & GAS HAPPEN IN TWO AND A HALF WEEKS".

The following weekend, we witnessed how much our members and golfing friends love this club when several dozen people came to help clean up the course. For a couple of hours each day, I went around thanking people for their help, taking pictures of this amazing show of unity and care for others. My only regret is that I was too busy getting the pro-shop and office ready along with the snack bar, and I could not thank everyone personally during the time I visited. For that reason, it is impossible to thank everyone, here or personally, but, from the bottom of my heart and with all of the gratitude our board and staff can have; THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!

After only two days of people bringing their own equipment, friends and family, the golf course itself was almost ready for play... though it did look different without about 150 trees down or bare. 

In the process, every board member got involved, with Rusty taking the lead as former president since Brad's home and Joe Wynn's home as well were pretty badly damaged and they also needed to deal with their own losses and insurance transactions.

Our crew (Ed Hughes has an amazing group of workers with Josh, Trina, Johnny and Chad), our members, our snack bar staff (Jennifer, Alyssa, Alisha, Arine, Lyndsay), our friends and the Chamber of Commerce (Susie Cupp and Debbie Smoot), all worked non stop. Even people like Kent Miller (PGA Professional, Clinton OK) and Mike & Steve Whitaker (Woodward, OK) entered in the picture, organizing and making special plans for very special circumstances, and on June 2 and 3, from three small trailers instead of a comfortable clubhouse, with a tent instead of a dining room, with twisted and broken carts instead of nice clean ones, and with a golf course with no trees, instead of the beautiful course we had, we held the annual Oil & Gas Tournament, almost 50 years, uninterrupted. None of that could have happened if our members, the Chamber of Commerce, our staff and friends, HAD NOT PUT THEIR BEST FOOT FORWARD to make this happen, which makes these seventeen days nothing short of amazing by showing how working together with people who care for other people, can accomplish anything!

On Memorial weekend, we opened the course for members and friends who helped, on Tuesday, May 30th, we resumed the Tuesday night Scramble and we continued to be opened in the afternoons... then, two amazing days of golf during the Oil & Gas...

Wow!! THANK YOU ALL! 

Without all of these people and their hard work, the following winners would have not had had a chance to even participate!

"A"
106 - Culverstone Homes
109 - Doug Gray
112 - Thru Tubing Solutions







"B"
115 - Terry's Furniture
116 - Paul Jones Drug
116 - Bogey Boys






"C"
124 - Range Pro
125 - 1st National Bank
126 - Moran Equipment
(Schwab's Dogs Bumped with 121





"D"
129 - Weatherford Cement
130 - Redbone II
130 - Advanced Air






For pictures of the amazing weekend where our members and friends helped us, click Amazing ECG&CC's Members & Friends, Click>> Amazing People

For Pictures of the 2017 Oi & Gas Teams, Click Oil & Gas Teams >> Click Teams

For all other Oil & Gas Pictures, Click Other Oil & Gas Pictures>> Click Other

Monday, May 15, 2017

MAY 2017

May 13: Member-Guest. Great friendship in this event that is more like "Friend-Friend" Tournament, as we allow members invite other members to the tournament. As last year, we had guests from as far as far as Arizona on the west, and as far as Pennsylvania on the east. Joe Wynn, Greg Dodson and Craig Martin have hosted these super nice group of people that they met on a trip to Cancun in 2015. And of course, the usual friends from in town or neighboring cities... all are welcome here!

The Tournament started with a horse race on Friday the 12th, and we had two flights, "Studs" and "Nails"... you figure out who is who...In one flight, Rusty Wilson and brother Gary won on the 9th hole against Craig Martin and Shanw Dunphy (Arizona), Joby Gray and Logan Gore came in 3rd. In the other flight Heath Martin and Kim Jordan won for the second yer in a row, they were followed by Greg Dodson and Jim Skelnik, and in third, Ricky Nagle & Brandon Engel.

In the tournament, there are no ties and all ties are settled on the golf course with an actual playoff, if same score listed, final results are in order after playoff:

"A":
57-Keegan Hall & Toby Davis; 59-Mark Fairchild & Andrew Albert; 59-Joby Gray & Logan Gore

"B"
62-Barry Trotter & Tate Trotter, 63-Craig Martin & Shawn Dunphy, 63-Craig Phelps & Kelly Smith, other 63's Rusty Wilson & Gary Wilson, David Poole & Travis Poole

"C"
66-Jeff Donaghey & Eddie Savage; 67-Kelsi Wilson & Julie Recker (*); Ann Cowan-Michael Cowan
Other 67's James Ainsworth & Wes Marshall and Heath Martin and Kim Jordan

"D"
69-Brad Spitzer & Cody Varnell; Joe Wynn & Ken Recker; Rusty Ridling & Chad Cummins

(*) While taking pictures I witnessed some very nice shots, but none as exciting as in the playoffs, where Kelsi Wilson made it possible for her team to win the five way playoff for 2nd and 3rd places. On the first playoff hole (#1), with the hole stuck on the back left of the green, Kelsi and Julie's second shot was about 35 left of the green, with very little green to work with and a slight breeze coming from the south, it was nearly an impossible shot... Kelsi flopped her wedge, hit on the fringe and rolled to about 6 feet and then rolled it in to continue. On the second hole, Ann & Michael, had a birdie putt fro 4 feet, and Kelsi and Julie a putt from 20 feet, a putt that Kelsi rolled in to tie the hole rar, it was special, with several seniors graduating, three of them being the best in their respective teams: Kinsley Hall, Kelcee Millican and Colin Dyson, along with Conner Carlucci, Sierra Stout and Morgan Graham. Coaches Tim Ellison and Brian Hunt gave nice heart-felt speeches about their teams

May 8-9: Boys State Tournament. Boys started with a so-so, 307 and were several shots back of second, but, on the second round, aided by even par rounds of 72 by Colin Dyson and Conner Carlucci, the team had a 300 and pulled within two shots of second place. On the third and final round, the team ran out of steam and finished fourth. Nonetheless, it was a much better finish that no one expected after the first three tournaments of the year, including our local invitational where Elk City finished a disappointing fourth. Best player in the state tournament was Conner DeWitt with a 222 total .

May 6: Third Annual Path To Golf Tournament went great with a total of 20 teams and 78 players. Prior to the tournament, Shawn Wilson started with a prayer and host Jeremy Gray gave us several examples of why Path to Miracles and Rob's Ranch are places to support people with addictions. I personally had a request of having four of our kids who made a team (Baylar Barnett, John Harguess, Sam Firth and Tate Trotter) play with the Rob's Ranch team, all of whom are an inspiration to all of us, and especially Jason who despite his handicap of not having arms, plays great golf.... I wanted these kids to see how people can overcome obstacles with trust in God and personal will power. Neither team disappointed anyone, in the end, Jason wanted their autograph and was sent a cap with all four kids' signatures. We had three flights, and the results are as follows:

A:
51 - "Gary's 4" Gary Higginbotham, Kaitlyn Clarke, Kevin Clarke, Arthur Wilkins
52 - "Joby's Crew" Joby Gray, Eric Fox, Terry Stone, Logan Gore
54 - "Riverside's Best, Chris Martin, Clinton Simon, Perry Adams, BEar Aneshansley

B:
T55 - "Moran Equipment", Brad Harguess, Toby Davis, Brian Carnes, Keegan Hall
T55 - "Brian's Kids", Brian Hunt, Justin Twyman, Blake Johnson, Jordan Williamson
T56 - "Kim's Foursome" Kim Jordan, Joe Wynn,Rusty Wilson, Greg Dodson
T56 - "Family's Business" Ann Cowan, Sean Cowan, Michael Cowan, Ryder Cowan

C:
T59 - "Tinny Boppers" Baylar Barnett, Sam Firth, Tate Trotter, John Harguess
T59 - "Pellow House" Jeff Westphalen, Jeff Hobby, Rodge Dwinelle, Dennis Maddon
60 - "Justin's Band" Justin Ediger, Mike Stout, Terry Jordan, Jimmy Busselato

May 3-4, Girls State Tournament: Our girls never really got it going and it was not their best week of golf, despite the higher than usual scores, they came in third place in the tournament, and both, Kinsley Hall and Kelcee Millican made "All State". Kinsley will be playing college golf for St. Gregory University.

May 1st: Boys Regional in Weatherford proves to be a very challenging test where boys qualified for the State Tournament by placing third, the last available spot. In a very windy day, our kids shot, 318 and 307 for a 625 total. Conner DeWitt (75-75) and Tate Trotter (76-74) shot 150's, Baylar Barnett 156 (79-77), Colin Dyson 169 (88-81), John Harguess 180 (85-95).

April 25: Girls win Regional 4-A Tournament. Kinsley Hall is medalist with a 71, Kelcee Millican 3rd with a 79. Bayllee Miller shot 80, Sierra Stout 91 and Morgan Graham 112. The team's total was 321. Hard to say what their chances are, but if all regional tournaments, which are played all over the state, are an indication, they only got beat by one team across the state. Newscastle was second with 360, and Clinton was third with 378. Chloe Black, from Newcastle, last year's individual champion, shot a 75.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

APRIL 2017 (& some March, February and January)





2017, April 28> One more "in the books". Interbank Golf Outing closes the month of April with an outing of over 120 players, some of whom were very excited and some of whom were very visible. And no, that is not a wig!


2017, April 22: I attended a my first "fish fry" ever, where Vera Gilbert was successful in showing me how to eat my first "crawl fish"! (and second, and third and a few more). Here, I caught her with a mouth full of some delicious dessert she made... Great baker!

April 25: Girls win the Regional Tournament to qualify for the State Tournament, with Kinsley Hall taking individual honors with a 74. Kelcee Millican followed with a 79.










2017, April 20> Elk City Boys team "get it together" and win Clinton Invitational with a 307.Brayden Butcher, also from Elk City, but not on the team because he is home schooled, wins individual with a 307. 

In our team, Colyn Dyson shot 75, he was followed by Tate Trotter (76), Baylar Barnett (78), Conner DeWitt (78) and John Harguess (83)   














2017, April 17 > Girls take second place in the 4-A State Preview at Hefner Lake. Kinsley Hall (again!!) led the team with a 72, on a day where her putter was not working as well. She took second individually... BTW, many of us would like to have a 72... period, no matter how! Kelcee Millican shot 76, Baylee Miller 86, Sierra Stout 88, Morgan Graham 119. Haylee Poole played as individual and shot 95.



2017,April 13-14> Girls win again! (Clinton Invitational). Kinsley Hall shot a low round of 68! And this time, the "no-surprise" second best score of the team was Baylee Miller who shot a 74! (there's no stopping this girl!). As I understand, they won by over 50 shots! Way to go girls... and coach Brian Hunt! Boys did not fare as well at Lincoln Park West, but Conner DeWitt continues his good play and was the only player with a sub-80 round with a nice 74!

BTW... the boys team has several good players who seem to be on the verge of breaking through... Be patient!

2017, April 11 > Special date for me and our family. My brother Javier would have loved to be part of this, he loved people and fun... and GOLF!. First day of Men's Tuesday Night Scramble draws a crowd of 47 players in eleven teams. Great afternoon for golf, pretty good teams too. The team of Tyler Windsor Gunkel (LOL), Rick McNeal, Larry Lockett and Rocky Andresen won first with a 28, with five (5) (FIVE!) teams at 29!

Great Season's start!

2017, April 10 > Conner DeWitt, who placed 3rd in the Elk City Boys Invitational, leads Elk City Team with low score of 77. Elk City placed 4th among the visiting schools. After a very good start of the season, the team does not seem to find their way to low scores. Here are the rest of the scores: Colin Dyson 88, Baylar Barnett 85, Tate Trotter 87, John Harguess 89. Individuals Sam Firth 85, Conner Carlucci 89.

Elgin Schools won 1st with 331, followed by Altus with 333; Weatherford came in third with 336, and Elk City fourth with 337.

Low Individual was Josh Fairchild from Altus with a 75, with teammate Caleb Morrow coming just one shot behind at 76. Tanner Harris (Elgin) and Conner DeWitt followed with a 77, and the last score under 80 was Donovan Osborne (Cache) with 78.

Meanwhile, Elk City Girls, on the same day, won their third tournament in a row. Kinsley Hall 83, Kelcee Millican 87, Bailee Miller 86, Sierra Stout 88, Morgan Graham 109, Haylee Poole (Ind) 97.  Bailee Miller is probably the "Most Improved" golfer of 2016-2017, as she barely picked up the game in mid 2016 and has been consistently scoring in the 80's and solidly becoming "#3 Bag" and scratching up.

The whole team seems to have great chemistry among the players.

My Granddaughter Ana Micaela and
I with the Masters putter I brought
for her in April 2014 when she was
barely 4 months old.
2017, April 9 > MASTERS SUNDAY!! As it has been our family tradition the last few years, my daughter Paola comes to watch the last round of the Masters with dad. We had a "belated" birthday celebration and party for dad, watched The Masters and after Sergio parred #13 after being in trouble, we began cheering for him to catch Justin Rose.Nothing against Justin Rose, but to me it was "meant to be" that one day Sergio would follow Seve and Jose Maria as a Masters champion, besides, I have a "Spanish Connection" of sorts since part of my mother's family came from Spain, and also because I had the pleasure of playing nine practice holes for for the Mexican Open in 1978 with the late and great Seve Ballesteros, nine holes that would shape the rest of my life: the course was playing very tough, and I had a pretty decent round of 36 (one over par for the nine), while Seve had a 29! It sort of told me: "You're good, but not good enough to play golf for a living with the best golfers in the world". I'm glad... I would have never come to Elk City!

2017, April 8 > Had a wonderful nine holes alone with one of the kids who loves golf in Elk City... Travis Poole (we have many of them, and any nine holes with anyone of them would have been great). When I play with a group and we have competitions it is great and fun and energy building. When you play with one only, it makes it more of a friendship.


2017, April 3 > Girls win their own High School Invitational with a 323. Kinsley Hall led the team by earning medalist honors with a 74, followed by last year's State Champion Chloe Black (Newcastle) who scored a 77 and our own Kelcee Millican a 78. Baylee Miller, a freshman, seems destined to be one of the best in Elk City as she scores an 83 just months after she took up the game. The other two girls were Sierra Stout with an 86 and Morgan Graham 101. Haylee Poole is coming along great and her 87 in the JV Team was low among all JV teams or individual girls.  For picture album of this Tournament, click here: 2017 ECGirls Invitational. 

2017, April 2: Juniors: Tres Hill and Nathan Womack "survive" the weather and win their age division in the Silverhorn Junior Invitational. Great Going guys!

2017, April 1: The Club's Fundraiser Tournament was renamed as the "Grady Lantz Memorial", and while the weather was terrible, the participation and support could not have been better. 36 teams participated. 
"A">> T1st (65's): Russ Smith & Eddie Davis, Blane Short & Toby Davis; T3rd (66's) Sean Cowan & Brad O'Hara, Brian Hunt & Blake Johnson

"B">> T1st (69's): Tate Trotter & Ryder Cowan, Ronnie Smith & Alex Alvarez; 3rd (70) Aaron Kauk & Kim Jordan

"C">> T1st (72's): Tres Hill & Colin Dyson,  Barry Trotter & James Atkinson; 3rd (73) Jack Christian & Craig Phelps

"D">> 1st (78): Rocky Andresen & Donny Burson; T2d (79's) Mike Stout & Mike Carlucci, Jeff Rule & Terry Anderson, Jeff Donaghey & Billy Bashaw

March (Other): Tres Hill (14) shoots personal best with 64; Joby Gray shoots personal best at the Riverside Golf Course with a 63

February: John David Jones aces #17.

January: Joe Wynn is first newsmaker of the year with his ace on #7.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

"I'LL ALWAYS BE PART OF THE CLUB, RIGHT?"

One of the favorite pictures I had the pleasure of taking of
Grady... was driving home when I saw him with his horses,
so I stopped and took a few pictures. He loved horses, golf,
friends and cigars... and of course: Mel!
Mr. Graydon Lantz passed on February 20, sometime before midnight in Oklahoma City. He will be greatly missed.

Grady, as he was affectionately called, was one very special person to everyone whose life he touched. He was one of those people who commanded respect by just the way he conducted himself. A gentleman's gentleman.

Grady loved to play in tournaments,
here with son David in the
Father-Son Tournament
I was never quite comfortable calling him "Grady" when talking to him, even though he said to me long time ago to do so, thus, if I was talking to him, I skipped the name and I said something like "good morning", or "how did you play today". I only uttered the name "Grady" when I was talking about him to others, like this post. He was truly a man liked by everyone and I bet that if you asked ten random people what they thought about Grady, eight would say "old style gentleman", one would say "great guy", the other would say "sweet man"... or all three. One thing that I will remember, is that I never saw Grady not smile when he was talking directly to you.

Grady always attended the employees'
Christmas party with Mel. 
Behind that soft smile that always seemed to be holding a good cigar, there was this sportsmanlike, but killer instinct in any competition, whether in sports or business, he played to win. I am not sure when he took up golf, but I knew that golf, horses, cigars and most of all, family, were his favorite things. In parties, he seldom stayed late, if he attended, and preferred to go home to be with his wife Mel; in golf, he played as hard as he could, never giving up if the round started bad,  and when finished, he just had a glass of tea or soft drink and would go home right away.

The everlasting cigar in his lips,
even when hitting a shot!
I always kidded his regular group that they had changed the rules of "Wolf" in their group so that they would be more competitive with Grady. He didn't care, he just enjoyed friendships, the sunlight, a little competition, and the harder it got to win, the better he felt when he did.

He loved all kids of golf competition, and certainly he liked to play in tournaments, especially those that tested your personal skill (individual tournaments). In the Club Championship, we started a "Super Senior" flight back in 2012 (he was 77 at the time) and though he competed against men 10-12 years younger than him, he was never out of the top three (except once), winning once.

"Deadly" around and on the greens!
The time he finished out of the top three was because he was forced to quit after a near heat stroke by the group he was playing with. He had opened the tournament with a 78 (two better than his age at the time) and was doing very well and on his way to another "Super Senior" title when he got really hot, and his playing companions (who were not in his age group) forced him to quit. Later he admitted that it had been the best thing to do for his health.,,, but at the time, he just wanted to continue playing.

You could count that on July 4th,
Grady would sport a great looking
and patriotic shirt.
Grady the golfer, was not much different than Grady the member, or board member. He took his tasks seriously, and always tried to find the most effective way, with fairness, to resolve an issue in order to succeed, only in this case not for himself, but for the club. Above all, he cared for the club and people, and always wanted to make the best decisions for it's success, sometimes injecting a new perspective on an important issue out of his bank of wisdom, or sometimes by merely playing the "devil's advocate" to bring up a point that no one had thought about, and sometimes by leading on a issue he believed in. In meeting, when at times, people began voicing opinions at the same time and interrupting each other, Grady would wait for the precise moment that he knew he would be heard, he would speak softly, and everyone listened.

Grady giving a "High Five" during a post
tournament challenge. In this photo, he just lost
first place to closest to the pin to the 18th
green. He didn't care, he loved competing.
I had the pleasure of watching play, or of playing with him many times, and he always had this demeanor, this posture, this personality that you knew that he was always playing to win. Period. After the round, he'd sit and be your friend again, but in competition, second place was not his favorite thing.

The last official action on record that Grady took in a board meeting was that of making the motion to hire me as manager of the club last December. Looking back, he seldom was the first one to make a motion to move forward in something, so this was very special to me... (thank you!).

Loved playing with friends in tournaments...
Sometime in early February, he did not feel good and went to the doctor (if I understand correctly, his friends urged him to go after a few days of complaining about his energy level) who sent him to a specialist in Oklahoma City. A few days later the bad and sad news came that he had terminal cancer.
And he never came back to Elk City. While in the hospital, he received family and friends, and the last non-family member to visit was his long time friend, golf companion and fellow board member, Joe Wynn.

... with friends in his daily group... 
During the board meeting of Monday, January 20, just a few hours before Grady passed in Oklahoma City at the Baptist Memorial Hospital, the board members were sharing their "Grady Memories", all sad knowing that he would not come back. Brad Gilbert shared that he had seen him the week before and that he looked great, if no one had told him about the cancer, he would have never guessed that Grady was that sick. Then Joe shared his last visit with him. It was the day before, Sunday the 19th, "at the end of the visit, Grady said to me" Joe recalled with a broken voice, "Joe, I will always be part of the club, right?" YES SIR!... (and of everyone whose life you touched). 
... and even with "strangers", here with my
daughter Paola when they won their flight
in the Tumbleweed Couples. 

Grady, Thank you for the memories and thank you for sharing that unquenchable passion for life with all of us.

BELOW THERE ARE SOME COMMENTS ABOUT GRADY, EITHER POSTED IN FACEBOOK OR SHARED WITH ME PERSONALLY...

"Doc" Ware (First Baptist Church): I was blessed with the honor of leading Grady Lantz to the Lord, That day, he was in pain, but he said to me that it was the greatest day of his life"

Oh yes... he seemed to like the color blue as well!
Joe Wynn: "He was one of my best friends ever. He never said a bad thing about anyone"

Charlie Kauk: "He will be missed, but never forgotten"

Ed Hughes: When I ended in the emergency room and sent a text to the board, I wasn't there five minutes and Grady came in to visit with me. He always cared for the club, but mainly for the people who worked at the club"

Ed Hughes: "He was one of the fairest men I knew in the board over the years. One time when we were going to hire his grandson for the maintenance crew, Grady said to me, 'Don't hire him because of me, hire him if you think he is going to do a good job, and, if you need to fire him, don't keep him because of me either, you do your job, and he needs to do his'... That was Grady", Ed said.

















Thursday, January 19, 2017

THE NEW YEAR: EXPECT THE BEST IN 2017

Brian & Christie celebrating the
New Year with "aunti" Jan
The beginning of 2017 was pretty "cool", one in my book of memories. We first celebrated at the club with a small group of members who made the evening a very memorable one; part because it felt almost like a large family (only about thirty people attended plus staff) and partly because it was a truly fun evening.... then, the first tee shots of 2017 were not too far down the morning, and just about 6 hours or so later, I met with four of our kids who would officially hit the first shots of the new year.


L-R: Tate Trotter, Tres Hill,
Travis Poole, Haylee Poole
As it turned out, it began with a crooked tee shot that hit me right in the gut. No kidding here LOL!

The whole thing was funnier than anyone would have thought, considering what happened and of the millisecond I felt some sharp pain in my gut

To some, it would have been  a sign of bad luck, "what a start!" they would have said. Not me, to me, it was a sign of good luck... consider this, the ball could have hit my expensive camera lens, it didn't; it could have hit my head, it didn't; it could have hit my hand, elbow or forearm which most likely would have caused me to drop the camera and lens on the pavement, it didn't, it could have hit me lower or on the knee, it didn't. The only place, and least exposed place of my body when taking a picture is my gut, particularly from the angle where the ball came from, and the ball found it's way in the narrow opening and hit me where it least hurt.

There it comes!
Earlier in the week, I had asked several of our junior "regulars" to show up on Sunday, January 1st, to "officially hit the first tee shot of the season". I didn't make an official invitation to all the kids (I should have done it), and it was more a thing I thought of when two of them had visited the club a few days before and a text I sent to kids that came to mind very quickly at that moment.

It was a cool, but beautiful morning. Some clouds on the east and a nice colored sunlight showing.
Four kids showed up (some had texted that they were out of town): Haylee Poole, Travis Poole, Tate Trotter and Tres Hill. As we were walking to the first tee, I decided, that we should have an "Indianapolis Start", but there was not enough room for four golfers, so, we had a "ball toss" to see which two would hit first and which two would hit second.
Getting closer! Haylee praying!

Haylee and Travis won the "ball toss" and they were the first two to hit. Haylee on the south side of the teeing area on #1 (the left side) and Travis on her right. The idea was for me to take a picture of the first tee shot of the first group who "inaugurated" the season, so I positioned myself on the cart path ahead and just right of the tee box. Twenty seconds later, I had an "owie" on my belly and another twenty seconds later, we  were all laughing after Haylee had caught the ball with the toe of her driver sending the ball almost straight to the right, where I was, and where it caught me in the gut, as described above.

Worried that she had hurt me bad, she ran towards me, probably faster than the ball had come. As she was coming, I started laughing, as in "Dang it! That one hurt! How come you dummy (Alex) did not position yourself at a different angle?" Meanwhile, as Haylee began running towards me, probably thinking that she had hurt me bad, her original face expression was a worry and being sorry, then, of total surprise and relief when she saw me laughing. Then, we all laughed. She apologized, but it was me who had to apologize, there are a number of things I could have done different and still have the kids hit the first shot without such an incident...

Ball found a target.
Haylee worried.
I was also grateful that it was not a bad accident that anyone would have had to regret (if anything, any regret would have been mine, not for planning this moment, as I would never want to be the source of anyone thinking they did something "wrong" where they hurt someone badly when I could have done something to prevent it).

In retrospect, I should have thought of asking all four kids to hit a few warm-up shots, not because I thought of wanting to avoid an accident, but because they would have felt much better if they open the season with a nice shot and would not have been as nervous... and considering the result, it would have surely avoided a first morning "stiff" swing.

After the "ice was broken" and everyone was lose, Tres and Tate hit near perfect shots down the middle of the fairway.

Had I seen the ball coming, this is
what I would have looked like
When I was taking the picture, I never saw the ball come towards me. All I remember feeling the contact. However, I knew that I had taken seven or eight pictures in a span of one and a half seconds, so I was fairly confident that the camera had taken the ball in flight, and it did (see the pictures posted above) and decided to make a composite for my young friend and "executioner" and for me, both, as a reminder lucky we were and, thinking, if this was a sign of things to come, bring them on!

Thank you kids for coming to share a short moment with me... I can say, without a doubt, the start of the year could not have been any better!

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

THE WORLD OF GOLF NEEDS TIGER.... OR HIS REPLACEMENT SOON!

I've always been a big golf fan, though I have not completely wrapped my support for the "wrap around season" that combines two calendar years. Anyway, that aside, I am very happy that Tiger came out and played his tournament -he was the birdie leader for the week, but also the bogey and double bogey leader. Only time will tell us what kind of golfer he will be in his forties. I personally wish him well, in fact, even though I am not a personal fan of Tiger, I am a fan of champions, so, if he ever gets to seventeen majors, and as much as I have been a Nicklaus fan all my life, I'll be cheering for him to tie Jack. I think it would be a historical moment that no one would want to miss.

Being a good golfer is not easy, being a very good golfer is very difficult, being a great golfer, almost impossible, and being a champion, well, it takes a special person, a God given talent, and the determination to succeed with all the needed sacrifices.... not to mention good luck, and that does not necessarily mean lucky breaks, but good luck in historical life.

For instance, Ben Hogan would have never been Ben Hogan had it not been for the likes of Byron Nelson and Sam Snead, and the other way around. Jack Nicklaus would not have been as famous if his first win had not been the 1962 U.S. Open in a playoff against Arnold Palmer, "The King", then his last major against 12 major champions that together had over 25 majors, all of whom were in the leader board on the last day. It goes the same for Gary Player, a small man who won nine majors against the likes of Nicklaus, Palmer and Trevino; and Tom Watson, who after being labeled a "choker", won, among his eight major championships, three majors against Jack Nicklaus on epic Sunday finishes.

Then here comes Tiger Woods, a skinny kid of mixed race and takes over the golf world. Some did not like his "brash" coming in, or his comments of "winning with his 'B' game" (it was true, and so did every one of the champions mentioned above, they just weren't as brash and downright cocky as tiger was), as if it was not bad enough to lose to a teenager, but losing to his "B" game.

For perhaps two decades, in between Lee Trevino (6), Greg Norman (2), Nick Faldo (6), and Seve Ballesteros (5), there was no true dominant player from the mid 80's to the late 90's, when Tiger came to the scene after winnings 6 straight U.S.G.A. Championships (three U.S.G.A. Junior and three U.S.G.A. Amateur Championships). Not even the great Jack Nicklaus or the greatest amateur player, up to that time, Bobby Jones ever did that.

Tiger's last major championship was in 2008, an epic U.S. Open that required 18 extra holes against Rocco Mediate. Tiger was hurting, nevertheless, before the playoff, Tiger knew he was going to win, Rocco knew he was going to lose, and Tiger knew that Rocco knew that Tiger was going to win.

That was Tiger's 14th major since his first in 1997. No one, and I mean no one, has dominated professional golf the way Tiger did for those 12 years. Wow. Golf needed a champion. We had a few, including Phil Mickelson, who could win a few tournaments, but no majors, or few. Many say that Tiger was the best ever, many, like me, say, it's close. Tiger never played against players who won multiple majors. Professional golfers became spoiled. A lot of money. Most professionals played to earn a nice check, few played to win. When Tiger came to the tour, he came to win, and win he did. He took the tour like an unwanted tornado, and like a wanted hero.

It's been three years since Tiger's last win. A little over a year since he last competed in a major (the 2015 U.S. Open) where he missed the cut after rounds of 80-76.

I'm a Jordan Spieth fan. Not a big fan of Jason Day, but love to watch him when he is on. I'm a Mickelson fan as well, and "D.J.". Everyone deserves second chances... including Tiger. A second chance to a comeback. Who wouldn't want to see Tiger down the stretch against Jason, Jordan, D.J. and Adam? Maybe through Phil in the mix? Like 1986, in the Masters, I'd be rooting for the two older guys. Up to the U.S. Open last year, Tiger has competed in 14 tournaments over two seasons, never finished better than 17th, Withdrew a few times. He also missed five cuts.

I remember reading that Tiger lives a lonely life. It must be hard. And he probably has more swing thoughts than the average golfer, thus his rounds in the 80's and frustrating results. Nothing he does now, takes away his wins and the thrills he gave the golf world with his play way above the tour's average of his time. There was a time when no one doubted he would break Jack Nicklaus' record of 18 majors, now, most of us doubt he has what it takes to win again, let alone a major, or for that matter, multiple majors. I personally did not doubt it, and in fact, I "predicted it". But 2009 got in the way and his "bite" was never the same again.

There is no question his personal life got in the way. You can't play a game that requires so much concentration when your personal life is unraveling. I can only go back to the only major that he led into Sunday and ended up losing, the 2009 PGA Championship. Up to that time, his 14 majors had all been when he was leading the tournament coming into Sunday, and this time he was leading by two over an obscure South Korean professional, there would be no way that he would lose... "might as well give him the trophy". Ben Hogan also got in the way of Tiger's fifteenth major: to a question of, "Mr. Hogan, who do you think is going to win today", a classical Hoganesque answer, "I don't know, that is why they are playing, to see who wins".

I remember watching him struggle that Sunday. I remember making a comment in the middle of the back nine, before he lost the lead, "Tiger looks worried". His steps were not the same, his countenance was not the same. And as history shows, he had reason to be worried. And now, his fans and golf fans in general are worried that his exit is just like we see: he might not come back because history shows that Tiger will not play unless he knows he has a chance to win.

Time has healed some wounds, but time has also punished Tiger a lot, perhaps more than he should have been punished. I believe it is time to look forward and let him play and help revive the game a little, just like Jordan Spieth did a year ago. We need Tiger more than ever, if nothing else, to pass the torch, "live and well" to the next generation of champions, instead of just retiring in the lowest moments in his golf life.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

MUSIC OR NO MUSIC?

A couple of months ago, a members came to the pro-shop and asked: "Since when did the Rules of Golf changed?" I told him that the rules are revised every two years and from time to time, some rules change a little. "Well" he angrily added, "so when did they change". I told him that I did not understand the question, then he said, "since when is music allowed on the golf course?" Now I got it. This member heard someone with music and did not like it a bit. We discussed the issue for a while and I explained to him the points below, but to no avail.

The concept of music on the golf course is not a new trend, you can talk to Sam Snead... or his ghost. Sam used to whistle a tune while playing golf, he said it made him swing smoother. Over the years, one thing led to another, and now, it is not unusual to see golfers with earphones, or even with a radio or music player of some sort in their golf carts.

I was one who used headphones or earphones to listen to soft or classical music, but I had never heard actual music outside my earphones played by someone else or where others could hear it.... then, I came to Elk City in 2011 and a new world opened when I realized that many of our members or visitors in tournaments, had radios or Blue Tooth speakers in their carts, and were playing music all the time. Personally, it never bothered me, but I know there are some people who get a little -or a lot- distracted or irritated about it. FRANKLY, I FAIL TO SEE THE PROBLEM, ESPECIALLY IN DAILY PLAY.

Golf is a game, and we are, after all, in the 21st century and things have changed a lot.

Music on a golf cart doesn't distract me as much as sudden movement caught while I am swinging; perhaps a sudden turn on of the radio would startle me if caught in the middle of my backswing, but if music is already playing while I am playing, it does not bother me a bit, in fact, like Sam Snead, I tend to try to follow a certain rhythm and it helps. For daily play, music on a golf cart or on a hole adjacent to the one you are playing, is very common, not only in Elk City, but elsewhere too, including New Mexico and Arizona, where the same "fad" has spread. Here, I have heard music everywhere, in every tournament and in daily play, including in the most serious tournament of all: The Club Championship.

The above is not to say that I do not understand those who do not enjoy a little music on the course, to who I would suggest, that if music is played in your group and you do not like it, to politely ask the player or players who are playing the music to please lower the volume or to not play it while you are swinging. Everyone wins that way....

THERE IS NO RULE OF GOLF AGAINST MUSIC, but the Rules of Etiquette touch on that a little, in a different way. Realize though, that there is no penalty for a breach in etiquette, other than you won't be invited to a group again if you do things that bother that group or a player in that group.

Here is what the Rules of Golf mention, first, The Spirit of the Game, which I believe is the most important thing:

The Spirit of the Game (Etiquette: USGA Rules Book)

Golf is played, for the most part, without the supervision of a referee or umpire. The game relies on the integrity of the individual to show consideration for other players and to abide by the Rules. All players should conduct themselves in a disciplined manner, demonstrating courtesy and sportsmanship at all times, irrespective of how competitive they may be. This is the spirit of the game of golf.
"Courtesy and Sportsmanship"... think about it. You can demonstrate courtesy by turning the volume down, and you can also demonstrate courtesy by not overreacting to someone playing music at a decent and non disruptive volume.... the rules of golf explain it three paragraphs later with,

Consideration for Other Players (Etiquette: USGA Rules Book)

Players should always show consideration for other players on the course and should not disturb their play by moving, talking or making unnecessary noise. Players should ensure that any electronic device taken onto the course does not distract other playersOn the teeing ground, a player should not tee his ball until it is his turn to play. Players should not stand close to or directly behind the ball, or directly behind the hole, when a player is about to play.
So, let's interpret this altogether: the USGA recognizes that there are players who like to play with "electronic" devices (radios, electronic Blue Tooth speakers), and it asks people not to make unnecessary noise, that, in my opinion, would define a sudden turn on of the radio or device during someone's backswing, as much as loud griping about someone's music. If the music is already playing in the background, I guarantee you, you'll learn to ignore it or to swing with it.

This is one time where I would put this rule in effect: If you like music and join a group who doesn't, turn it down or off or go play with someone else; on the other hand, if you don't like music and you are joining a group that likes a little beat and already has a radio on, do not expect nor request that they turn their devices off, perhaps you'll learn a little more rhythm like Sam Snead. You may like it! In the end, I do believe that music is here to stay, so, if you do not like it, little by little, you'll find less and less people to play with.

Either way, PLAYING GOLF, UNLESS YOU ARE ONE OF THE 0.005% WHO PLAY ON THE TOUR, SHOULD BE ABOUT THE PEOPLE YOU PLAY WITH, BECAUSE THAT MY FRIENDS, IS THE REST OF THE SPIRIT OF THE GAME...

Monday, October 3, 2016

GO FOR BROKE, BECAUSE GOLF IS JUST A GAME!

Arnold Palmer changed golf in the sense he brought golf to the masses. It was a little bit of luck and a lot of his own doing. The luck part was that television and golf started a relationship in 1957, then in 1958, when he won his first of four Masters titles, it was all captured in TV along with the birth of "Arnie's Army'. Palmer had already won eight times as a professional by the time he played the 1958 Masters, so, he had name recognition, but, his win at The Masters and the subsequent birth of Arnie Army, along with his great personality was there for everyone to see,

Some say that TV made Arnold Palmer, others, like me, say that Arnold Palmer made TV, at least sports and specifically golf TV, what it is today. Without TV, Palmer would have been just as famous, perhaps not just as soon.

His win in the 1958 Masters revived the tournament, or at least this tournament was given a wake-up shot of caffeine with the birth of Arnie's Army (in those days, all unsold Masters tickets, which were in the thousands then, were given to soldiers of Fort Gordon so that TV could capture big galleries and not empty golf course... it worked for the Masters, and it worked for Arnie, as all soldiers who had found out that Arnie had been in the Coast Guard, rooted him to victory and became the infants of Artnie's Army). He also revived the "British Open" (The Open Championship). Prior to 1960, not many players from the U.S. traveled to play the oldest championship in the world. His first visit was in 1960, at the Old Course of St. Andrews, and his presence made the gate intake bigger, he lost by one shot, but he won in 1961 and 1962.

Palmer, a young man who came from a family with great values for work and family, not a rich family by any means, and a family that had taught him that a good name was worth more than anything, and something his showed his whole life, but it was the way he carried his name and the way his reputation grew that made him king:

Arnie was handsome, athletic, had great personality, was very emotional, enthusiastic, had a reputation for keeping his word, was generous, could play the game at the highest level, with great gusto and hit the ball as hard as he could every swing, and was as aggressive as anyone else. Arnie seemed to have never left a putt short, he was friendly (someone once said, "Arnold Palmer never met a stranger"), and on top of that, he had a great smile, a "Cary Cooper smile",which was great for TV. He came at a lucky time for him, for golf and for the Masters.

Arnold started the "Big-3" show, featuring Jack Nicklaus & Gary Player,
traveling around the world spreading the fun of the game with his style of play.
I had the pleasure of taking this picture (and the faded insert) in his last
Masters Par-3 appearance in 2014. The Big-3's "Last Journey"
But none of that would had mattered if he did not win major championships: he won seven between 1958 and 1964, including four Masters titles, 62 tournaments, the World Cup four times, plus a number of senior tournaments, including the Senior U.S. Open. During his career, he grew a reputation for keeping his word, among some other things, his handshake contract, worth millions, with Mark McCormack is well documented, he was generous, great friend, great competitor and golf's ambassador, all of it, again, in great display by the birth of sports TV.

His style of play captured the masses: GO FOR BROKE... PLAY TO WIN. No one went for broke more than Palmer did, no one, of his generation went for broke more than Arnold Palmer ever did... if he played poker, I guarantee you, he would go "all in" more often that anyone else. Why wait to win later if you can win now?

Two years after his first win at the Masters, and just a few months after he had won his second Masters, he was playing in the U.S. Open in Denver, CO at Cherry Hills C.C. With 18 holes to go, he was seven shots behind Mike Souchack, During the first three days, he had tried to reach the green on the short Par-4 opening hole, which was surrounded by heavy rough. Arnold was not a "lay-it-up" guy, this hole had cost him two bogeys by now. He just "knew" that if he could land it at the end of that rough or just past it, the ball could trickle to the green for an easy two-putt birdie, forget laying up and wedging to a few feet for a birdie and an easy par. The hole was 353 yards long, and even though it was downhill, there were over 60 yards of rough to grab your ball -as he had already experience, and it is not like you were playing with metal woods, graphite shafts, and Titleist ProV1's.

So what would most sane people do after failing three straight times to drive this hole? Not Palmer, he was a "go for broke" guy, and for broke we went, a fourth time, with confidence and not allowing past results deter him from his thinking: it could be done, and "done" he did: in this final round, he reached the green, two putted for birdie as he knew he could, drew confidence from his daring shot, and went on to shoot a 65 to beat an upcoming Jack Nicklaus by one and Ben Hogan's last reasonable try at a fifth U.S. Open by three. Then, during the telecast (in those days there was only one camera per hole in the last four or five hole), his "charge" was well documented until the tournament was over. Everyone in the there knew what he did on #1, and then, the world knew what he did on #1.

As well, people who watched TV golf, knew that Palmer was "never out" and he cold come back and win the last few holes, all he had to do was smile, hitch his trousers and "go to work his magic". He won many tournaments coming from behind, just like he lost many that he should have won. He was the Tin Cup's Roy McAvoy (Kevin Costner), but with the trophies on his mantel, over 80 of them throughout his career: people wanted Arnold Palmer to win. Period. He won with a smile, and he lost with a smile, sometimes, and especially when you just played better, he just said, "great job". You would then see him in his next tournament or "Big Three" outing with Nicklaus and Player, and forget that he lost last week.

Other than on TV, I only saw The King twice up close, 47 years apart, the first time was in 1967, when I was 16 and attending, at my mother's insistence, the World Cup; and the second time during the 2014 Masters which I attended with several members of Elk City Golf & C.C. Both times I had a chance to get close enough to perhaps extend my hand and shake his, both times I didn't: in 1967, because I was shy and did not want to stand in line for an autograph (at the time I would have rather have had Pele's autograph, as I did not know much about Palmer), the second time, just before the Par-3 Tournament on Wednesday at the Masters, I almost did, but "chickened" out, partly because there were too many people doing just that and I didn't want to be like them, and partly because I felt he deserved a little break, whatever little break from the public my five seconds could give him, and yes, also out of respect.

By this day in 2014, I knew that he didn't know me, but I also knew he did know me, because I was like millions who had grown respect for him. At the same time, I didn't know him, but I knew a lot about him.

One incident during that World Cup is engraved in my mind, one that showed that Arnold Palmer knew that "Golf is Just a Game", a game that he played well enough to become very rich, but a game none the less. On #14, a long Par-3 hole, I had managed to crawl next to the green (no ropes) and was just a few feet from his ball. When he was ready to putt, a young girl distracted him with a sudden cry, he stopped, walked to her and her family and told her not to worry, "this is only a game, do you play?", the girl slightly shook her head, like in a circle, not sure whether to say yes or no, Arnie just smiled, came back to his ball, made a birdie from about 15 feet, retrieved the ball and gave it t the girl. He would go on to win the World Cup with Jack Nicklaus (three other times) and the individual title as well.

Other than that one, I don't remember specific shots except for some tee shots, where he had a lot of fun when he happen to outdrive Nicklaus. I did not know if they were winning or losing, I only remember that he seemed to have so much fun playing and that he was not as serious as I thought golfers should be. It was because of him (and yes, also Jack) that I got a little more serious about golf, but mainly because he and Jack had made it look so much fun (even Jack, known for being so serious, seemed to be having a lot of fun - maybe because he was around Palmer).

Now, forty seven years later, on the first tee at the annual Par-3 Tournament at the Masters, I just watched in awe as he and the rest of his "Big-3" members, just enjoyed being around the gallery that adored them, and felt that though I did not know him, never met him , I knew enough about him to be at peace with history in the sense I would never shake his hand unless I found him at a supermarket (right) or at a restaurant.

As I grew from teenager to a young adult and took the game more seriously, and became skillfully enough to think I could make a living playing the game, I adopted his style of play, but unlike him, I lacked the skill: I was a trapper without the skins on my wall, and I settled to be around the game by trying to help people have more fun with the game. In fact, the only time I beat Jack Nicklaus was when I would play two balls on the course for practice, and secretly, I had reversed from rooting for Jack to rooting for Arnie, and I, Arnie, never lost to Jack in those matches, even if I needed a mulligan or two along the way.

Without realizing that this Sunday in 1967 had influenced my life so much, I truly became an advocate for playing the game, even if seriously, as if golf is only a game, always. Many years later, when people could use email (I still don't know how it works, but use it constantly), I secured every popular email address of hotmail, msn, gmail & yahoo of "golfisjustagame@". I also own the domain site http://golfisjustagame.com, which I use to direct golfers at this blog, and now I know, it was all because of him.

Thank you Arnie.

P.S. My daughter Anya beat me to the punch with a timely -and very good- article about Arnold Palmer (click here to read her take). Here is another viewpoint on what made him The King.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

ANNUAL ELKS TOURNAMENT

Jared Lunde, from Clinton, OK, made a hole in one on #5 to help his team win the Annual Elks Tournament with a score of 52.  As usual, the Elks Annual Tournament attracted 22 or more teams, this year 23, and as usual, Ann Cowan, Elks member and former Elk City Golf & C.C. board member, worked without rest to have a successful tournament: the result was 92 players and about 40 hole sponsors! Thank you Ann!

The field was divided into three flights, with the top three teams in each flight winning a prize
(Note: this tournament calls for a playoff for any tie)

"A"
52 - Dustin Mahoney, Garrison Mendoza, Jared Lunde, Malachi Murphy
55 - Digger's Diggers: Craig Martin,
56 - Bell Insurance: Joe Bell, Robert Lakey, Eddie Lakey, Brad Spitzer

"B"
59 - Ronnie Smith, Eddie Davis, Jeff Donaghey, Jeff Rule
59 - Keith Hulen, Kaleb Keith, Mona Alvarez, Alex Alvarez
59 - Joyce Schones, Brian Hunt, Ricky Marr, Wes Marshall

"C"
67 - Silver Fox: Leon Stuart, Tyler Windsor
67 - Culver Electrci: Brandon Culver, Cory Culver,
68 - James Smith, Tana Smith,

We will fill in the missing names in every team as we get the correct information


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

LABOR DAY TOURNAMENT: A TRULY FUN GOLFER MIX

This year, along with the regular adults teams, we had a mixture of older and younger teams, including some teams where the combined age ranged between 26 total, to over 145! Now, that is such an age difference that you know everyone is having some fun! And the results were a testament to this....

Kim Jordan tests new back tee on #14
The format called for teams to play holes 1-6 in the popular scramble format; holes 7-12 in low ball (i.e."best ball" or "four ball") and holes 13-18 Alternate Shots, where one shot alone can be the difference between winning and coming last on your flight, and where more people say, "I'm sorry" to their partner than in any other format, as you can truly put your partner in awkward or difficult positions, if not down right hilarious... for the player who hit the bad shot.... "sorry partner, I wanted to see if you truly knew what is it like to play from the places I usually play from! Surely now you won't make fun of me in our usual Sunday game!"

You play the Alternate Shot format well, and your score won't inflate as much.

Roger Redd & son Jason, one of a few
father-son teams
The field was divided into four flights as follows:

"A"
64 - David & Berek Dyson
65 - David & Rachel Poole
66 - Ann Cowan & Grady Lantz; Mark Fairchild & Albert Andrew and Eddie Davis & Ronnie Smith
67 - Rusty Wilson & Greg Dodson; Paul Gunkel & Craig Martin and Haley Gunkel & Tori Windsor

"B"
68 - Aaron Kauk & Kim Jordan
69 - Tres Hill & Drake Hughes; Brandon Thomas & Ricky Marr
70 - Ricky Nagle & Jorey Price; Bob Miller & Tom Gilliland; Quint Nichols & Brian Hunt

"C"
73 - Jeff Donaghey & Jeff Rule; Leon Stuart & Tyler Windsor; Phillip Byer & Baylar Barnett (Note: Jeff & Jeff won playoff, Leon & Tyler came in second, Phillip and Baylar came in third. Only ties for first required a playoff on the course)
75 - Brad Harguess & John Harguess

"D"
79 - Richard Harvey & Don Murphey
81 - Joe Wynn & Charlie Kauk; Corey Culver & Ttravis Poole; Gary Jennings & Jeff Smoot; Gary &  Jeannette Scott

Note: No team pictures were taken in this tournament.