Golf Buzz

October 20, 2014 - 9:40am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Rory McIlroy
YouTube/USA Today Sports Images
What do you think about this pumpkin carving? Is there any resemblance to Rory McIlroy?

Fall is here, which means it's pumpkin-carving season.

Who doesn't love a good jack-o'-lantern of a zombie, a monster, or a four-time major champion?

Wait, what?

That's right, someone decided to carve four-time major winner Rory McIlroy's face into a pumpkin. You can see the whole process in the video below:

 

If we're being honest, that pumpkin looks like McIlroy about as much as this tattoo looks like Ernie Els:

 

This pumpkin carver and that tattoo artist need to step up their game... like the corn-maze artist who rendered this awesome work of Bubba Watson:

 

Now that's how you do it.

h/t Golf News Net

Ben Martin
Ben Martin lines up a 46-foot left-to-right bender for the eagle that gives him his first PGA Tour victory.

You're trailing for the first time all day. You've reached the par-5 16th hole in two, but are still 46 feet away. And a win would give you your first PGA Tour victory.

No pressure, right? Well, if Ben Martin felt any lack of confidence Sunday with the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open on the line, he didn't show it when he lined up to make the shot of the weekend:

 

 

Perfect speed, perfect line, perfect execution -- and an eagle to cap a perfectly great weekend of golf for the Clemson alumnus.

SHRINERS HOSPITALS OPEN: Martin tops Streelman for first career victory

Sure, he still had two holes to play, but with a one-stroke lead and Kevin Streelman already in the clubhouse, all Martin had to do from that point on was keep it in the fairway. And he did that and more, making birdie on the final hole for a two-stroke win.

October 19, 2014 - 1:40pm
mark.aumann's picture
Growling Frog Golf Course
appix29/Instagram
North of Melbourne, Australia, Growling Frog Golf Course has the typical hazards -- bunkers, water and the occasional marsupial.

Sorry, we're just suckers for animals on golf courses. Eagles stealing golf balls? Check. A bear cub dancing with the flagstick? Got it. Snakes at the China Open? Yep.

We've even seen elephant tracks on the greens in Malaysia. (Good luck fixing those spike marks.)

WILD GOLF STORIES: Readers share some unusual tales

So we've pretty much seen it all when it comes to "animals on golf course" photos. Or we thought we had, until appix29 posted this shot on Instagram for the #PGA365 reader-submitted photo gallery.

It's from Growling Frog Golf Course in Yan Yean, Australia, on the north side of Melbourne. And yes, those are kangaroos. And no, they didn't show good etiquette by raking the bunkers afterward. (And yes, Growling Frog is an awesome name for anything, and probably worthy of a story in its own right.)

 

Loading

Only in Australia... Growling Frog GC. #teamtitleist #mytitileist

View on Instagram

Birdies, eagles, albatrosses and now marsupials. "Reckon you can put me down for a Joey on that hole, mate."

'ROOS ON THE LOOSE: Kangaroos interrupt LPGA tournament

After that, finding photos of golf balls landing on alligators is almost routine.

Dom DeBonis
Dom DeBonis/Facebook
Dom DeBonis is surrounded by his golfing buddies after an amazing week on the links.

Every golfer dreams of making at least one hole-in-one. Many golfers dream of taking a trip to the golf mecca known as Myrtle Beach. But the idea of making aces in three consecutive rounds at Myrtle Beach? That happened to 81-year-old Dom DeBonis this week.

This amazing feat comes courtesy of an article in Saturday's Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, written by Gerry Dulac.

ACES WILD: Man makes two aces in one round

Here's the background: Mr. DeBonis is a Pittsburgh native who now resides in The Villages, Fla. A former college golfer at Duquesne, the 14-handicapper made his first hole-in-one some 45 years ago, and then had another last month at his home course.

So when he had the opportunity to go to Myrtle Beach with 11 friends on a golfing trip to the Grand Strand, he couldn't resist. On Oct. 6, Mr. DeBonis carded an ace at Farmstead Golf Club in Calabash, N.C. He used a 9-iron from 112 yards out on the seventh hole.

The next day, he added a second hole-in-one at the Thistle Golf Club in Sunset Beach, N.C., using a 7-iron at the 129-yard sixth hole.

And the topper came on Oct. 8 at Blackmoor Golf Club, where Mr. DeBonis added his third ace in three days with an 8-iron at the 118-yard fourth hole.

CONSECUTIVE ACES: College golfer makes holes-in-hole on two par-3s

“There was a tree in front and a shadow over the green, but I said, ‘Oh, my God, I think it went in,’ ” Dulac quoted Mr. Debonis as saying. “We couldn’t see it. One of the guys said, ‘I think it’s in.’ So we walked up to the hole and there it was. I just couldn’t believe it. It was the most memorable week.”

A retired clothing buyer, Mr. DeBonis is considered the "kid" in his golfing family. According to the Post-Gazette story, brothers Nick DeBonis (97) and Al DeBonis (93) still regularly play golf -- and not surprisingly, shoot their ages on a routine basis. And a fourth brother, John, was 84 when he died in July.

In case you're wondering, the streak ended for Mr. DeBonis the following day at TPC at Myrtle Beach.

Still, the opportunity to buy drinks for the house on three consecutive days far outweighs the alternative.

 

Webb Simpson
USA Today Sports Images
Webb Simpson has used his belly putter since he was in college a decade ago.
Webb Simpson – the defending champion at this week's Shriners Hospitals for Children Open – is one of the last holdouts still using a long putter on the PGA Tour. On Friday, he said that he'll switch to a short putter in 2015, and perhaps even sooner.
 
In fact, the move could come as early as Simpson's appearance in the Dunlop Phoenix tournament in Japan, which begins Nov. 20.
 
"I may switch for Japan in a few weeks," he told PGATour.com, "but I’m still just trying to make sure I'm ready to go and have worked on everything I need to work on before I start."
 
 
Simpson has practiced with a traditional-length putter over the past several years and has been using one in about half his practice at home and during casual rounds, according to the PGATour.com report. He hasn't yet settled on a special type or model of short putter.
 
Simpson began using a belly putter a decade ago in college, and has used the long stick in all four of his PGA Tour victories, including the 2012 U.S. Open. Simpson's Open victory came in a cluster of major wins by players using long putters including Keegan Bradley at the 2011 PGA Championship, Ernie Els at the 2012 British Open and Adam Scott at the 2013 Masters.
 
The U.S. Golf Association and Royal & Ancient Golf Club have banned the use of the anchored stroke commonly used with belly putters and broom-handle putters as of Jan. 1, 2016. Players still will be allowed to use a long putter as long as they don't press it against their body to create a hinge effect.
 
Old Works Golf Course
Old Works Golf Course
Old Works Golf Course sits atop an EPA Superfund site contaminated by years of copper smelting.
In Montana, the end of October means golf season is pretty much winding down. At the Old Works Golf Course in Anaconda, just northwest of Butte, the end of this golf season might mean the end of the 17-year-old course's life – and the beginning of a huge environmental battle.
 
The Jack Nicklaus-designed Old Works is one of the world's more unusual courses because it sits atop an old smelting facility that processed as much as 3,000 tons of copper ore daily for many years. Eventually, the smelting operation moved to a newer, more efficient site, and in the 1980s the Environmental Protection Agency declared the century-old facility a Superfund clean-up site because of contamination from metals such as lead and arsenic.
 
Instead of undertaking a mammoth clean-up effort, however, government officials worked with Atlantic Richfield and Nicklaus to create a world-class golf course that would sit atop the Superfund site and provide a protective covering over the waste left behind. It made history as the first course ever constructed atop a Superfund site, and was quickly ranked among the top courses in Montana and the Northwest. 
 
Now, not quite 20 years later, Old Works is in dire need of a cash infusion from Atlantic Richfield and, according to The Montana Standard newspaper, it might be forced to close for good if the money doesn't come through.
 
The course's governing body already has voted to close the course and lay off its three full-time employees unless Atlantic Richfield agrees to provide $100,000 or more, the newspaper reported.
 
 
"It's not just business as usual. We view the golf course as the keystone of redevelopment," Carl Nyman, the Superfund coordinator for Anaconda-Deer Lodge County said. "The golf course was going to generate the revenue and the impetus for redevelopment. If that vision is to continue, it's important the golf course continues."
 
And if the golf course closes, Anaconda-Deer Lodge County Chief Executive Connie Ternes-Daniels said she would begin pressing Atlantic Richfield to remove all the waste that was left in place beneath the course – potentially a multi-billion-dollar effort.
 
"That was the agreed-upon remedy. If something were to happen to the golf course and the remedy is no longer there, it needs to be cleaned up," she told the newspaper. "I don't believe for one minute this community would have accepted that much waste left in place" without the golf course.
 
For its part, Atlantic Richfield says it has provided funding for the course over the last two decades and believes it needs to become self-sustaining. The company has offered another loan to keep the course open one more season, but course officials say the amount isn't enough.
 
And if the parties can't reach an agreement?
 
"The loss of that course would be devastating for everybody," Ternes-Daniels said. "It would be a huge economic impact if something were to happen to the course. The Old Works Golf Course is the flagship of remediation in Anaconda-Deer Lodge County. It needs to remain as such. It's the duty of EPA, ARCO and us to make sure it does continue."