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By now almost everyone has weighed in with their perspective on the Dustin Johnson ruling at the U.S. Open Sunday. Tour players and TV commentators alike have been quick to ostracize the USGA with comments like “bush league,” and “amateur hour.”
I’ve seen and/or heard a number of opinions about how the USGA got this one wrong……and while I certainly respect others’ opinions, I’d like to share mine as well. And my opinion is that the USGA, in point of fact, got it right.
Golf is myriad. It can be a relaxing, fun way to get exercise, an escape into nature, a social gathering place among friends, a business meeting ground, or a family outing. It is not a team based game that requires a certain number of people to have competition. All of these are positive attributes that get people picking up the game or continuing to play. For all of these positives, it faces some negatives when one considers the high pace and schedule oriented lifestyle most people live in today’s world.
Golf is not a 30-minute workout or a recreational league game that starts at a specific time and will end by a particular time. Playing 18 holes of golf is often portrayed as a five-hour round with little enjoyment, depending on the course. The image just described certainly would be the least desirable to entice anyone from a working household, especially when you consider the fees associated with a round of golf. There is a healthy alternative solution to keep golfers who are still solidly embedded in the workforce playing the game.
Springfield, Louisiana — June 12, 2016
James Anstiss of Hammond fired a final round 71 to win the 2016 Louisiana Golf Association Amateur Championship at Carter Plantation by three strokes over Hank Shaheen of DeQuincy. Anstiss finished with a 72 hole total of nine-under par 279 after posting rounds of 66-71-71-71. His dominant performance is the first wire-to-wire 72 hole victory since the LGA began to utilize online scoring in 2004. Anstiss originally hails from picturesque Queenstown, New Zealand and grew up playing rugby. He did not take up the game of golf until he was 15 years old and was able to earn a scholarship to play college golf for Southeastern Louisiana University where he is a rising Senior. His impressive development over the course of the last few years has culminated in a Louisiana State Amateur Championship.
June 9, 2016
The Louisiana Girls Junior Tri State team earned a record-breaking number of points this past week as they won the annual summer competition against teams from Arkansas and Mississippi. The event was held at the picturesque Old Waverly Golf Course in West Point, Ms.
Team Louisiana racked up 13 ½ points followed by Mississippi with 5 ½ and Arkansas with 5. The Louisiana girls played 16 matches over the two days of competition, winning 13, tying one and losing just two.
Members of the winning team were Tri State veterans Julia Johnson of Baton Rouge, Mary Chauvin of Hammond, Abbey Daniel of Covington and Aoife O’Donovan of Monroe and first time Tri State players Brooke Duzan of Sulphur, Camille Simon of New Orleans, Brooke Tyree of Sulphur and Alden Wallace of Shreveport. The team was captained by Sandra Smith of Delhi with assistants Ali Lucas of Crowley and Savannah Ennis of Abita Springs. Also accompanying the team were LWGA President Mary Edwards and Secretary Pam Washington.
St. Francisville, Louisiana May 15, 2016
Mike Hymel of Hammond fired a two-under par 70 on Sunday to win the 2016 LGA Net Amateur Championship at The Bluffs on Thompson Creek by three shots over Dwight Prudhomme of Lafayette. Hymel showcased his consistent driving off the tee and ability to hit a high percentage of greens in regulation to win his second LGA Net Amateur Championship, the last coming in 2013 at The Bluffs on Thompson Creek. Hymel started the final round with a one shot deficit behind Prudhomme, but he was able to distance himself from the field with the stellar round of 70, the lowest of the day. Hymel is a member of Oak Knoll Country Club in Hammond. He finished runner-up in the LGA Net Amateur at Carter Planation in 2014, and this year’s impressive performance solidifies his position as one of the best LGA Net Amateur players in the history of the event which has been conducted since 2000. Hymel joins Al Wyche of Plain Dealing and Tom Pollock of Baton Rouge as the only two-time LGA Net Amateur Champions.
April 24, 2016 Abita Springs, Louisiana
Lake Charles Country Club can officially be declared the golf club with the best golfers in the state of Louisiana after taking the LGA Club Team Championship title at Money Hill Golf & Country Club in Abita Springs this weekend. Lake Charles CC went wire-to-wire to win the first LGA Club Team Championship in the club’s prestigious 97 year history. The six man team of Billy Gabbert, Robby Going, Doug Quienalty, Hank Shaheen, Greg Sonnier, and Tyler Terry showcased the depth and caliber of players at Lake Charles CC, and they now have state bragging rights. Lake Charles CC shot a three-over par 291 in Sunday’s individual stroke play final round, and coupled with their 15-under par 129 in Saturday’s 4-Ball round, they finished at an impressive twelve-under par 420 to win by four strokes over runner-up and 2015 LGA Club Team Champions Oakbourne Country Club of Lafayette.