Two Illinois golfers made holes-in-one on the same hole, on the same day

Two golfers in Illinois aced the 17th hole at Tamarack Golf Course
By
Todd Eschman
Belleville News-Democrat

Series: Golf Buzz

Published: Thursday, August 17, 2017 | 8:17 a.m.

According to the National Hole-in-One Registry, the odds of two amateur golfers getting aces on the same hole at the same golf course on the same day are about 17 million-to-1.

Maybe it's time to move the pin the 17th hole at Tamarack Golf Course in Shiloh, Illinois.

Because it's on that 128-yard, par-3 hole that Troy resident Matt Morris, 38, and Andrew Boone, a 14-year-old freshman at O'Fallon High School, pulled off that rare feat on Aug. 5.

Just two days later, on Aug. 7, John Smith holed out on the 17th with a single swing of his 7-iron.

RELATED: The story behind the first known hole-in-one in golf history 

"It's very rare to have holes-in-one on the same hole on the same day," said Steve Liter, a PGA pro at Tamarack. "Then we had another a couple days later. You don't see that. I never have."

Liter, who's had two aces of his own, estimated there are 20 holes-in-one per year at Tamarack, almost all of them occurring on the Shiloh course's four par-3s. On the days the three most recent ones fell, the pin placement on the 17th hole did not favor holes-in-one.

"That hole has kind of a two-tier green, and on that day, the pin was on the lower level," Liter said. "The shots had to hit up high then roll back down toward the pin. That makes an exciting hole-in-one."

Morris was playing with his sons, Mason and Rhett, in a four-player scramble to benefit Pride of Illinois Cheer, Gymnastics and Tumbling club in Collinsville. He said it was just this third time out all summer.

"I used to golf a lot before I had kids," he said.

Matt Morris, 38, of Troy, got a hole-in-one Aug. 5 at Tamarack Golf Course in Shiloh as a participant in the Pride of Illinois Cheer, Gymnastics and Tumbling club benefit tournament. Morris celebrated with the other members of his foursome, which included sons Mason and Rhett.

Before taking his 9-iron shot, Morris joked to a friend, Lori Huffman, to keep it quiet, but the tongue-in-cheek remark was taken seriously by others in the tee box and on the adjoining green. The resulting hush that fell upon the scene only amped up the pressure on Morris.

"The whole place got quiet, and I was like 'oh (shoot),'" said Morris, an attorney. "As soon as I hit it my buddy said 'dude, that's a great shot.' When it went in, everybody up the hill started cheering, and there was a group on the next tee box that got in on the high-5s.

"It was a lot of fun to celebrate with my boys, who are 6 and 10."

The shot also earned Morris a share of the closest-to-the-pin pot, which he donated back to the cause.

Boone was not part of the Pride of Illinois tournament. Rather, he thought he'd get in a quick nine holes with his brother, Nicholas, and dad, Jason, ahead of his first high school golf team tryouts.

His 7-iron shot hit the high part of the green and stuck, but as his brother prepared to take his tee-shot, the ball began to roll toward the lower tier.

"All of the sudden we didn't see it anymore," Boone said. "At first I thought there was a chance it was in the hole, but then I started doubting it and thought it probably rolled off to the right. It was only when we drove up to the green did we know it was in the hole."

It was later in the day -- around 5 p.m., Boone said -- and the course was mostly clear. But it was pandemonium on the 17th green.

"We were jumping up and down and screaming," he said.

Boone has officially made the O'Fallon High golf team, and has been practicing with the varsity, though he says he'll likely compete some with the junior varsity, too.

Smith, 81, of Edwardsville, plays Tamarack weekly, but was not aware on Aug. 7 that the 17th hole was playing hot.

"It's a testy little hole across water," said Smith. "But a hole-in-one is like winning the lottery -- we all know it's luck. You make the best swing you can, and the shot falls where it will. I play there every week and most of the time don't hit the green."

Smith hit a hole-in-one before but has saved no mementos.

"I was in Florida, and I was at least 20 years younger then," he said.

This article was written by Todd Eschman from Belleville News-Democrat and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to legal@newscred.com.