News From Terre Haute, Indiana

July 8, 2012

RUB OF THE GREEN: Heat doesn’t deter Terre Haute golfers

Bob Arnett
The Tribune-Star

---- — “When you’re hot, you’re hot, and when you’re not, you’re not.” Those are the words of country singer Jerry Reed and they apply to golfers as well.

High temperatures haven’t seemed to affect play at local courses with Hulman, Idle Creek and Rea all reporting play being up this summer.

Rea Park has hosted hunts since the 1940s. Mike Kaperak sponsored noonday hunts Monday through Friday during the late 1940s and the popular competitions continue today.

One of the current hunts at Rea meets at 8 a.m., except Mondays and Tuesdays when play is at 7:30 a.m. There are usually 25 to 45 players playing four-man teams, with three low scores counting.

Entry fee is $10 per person with $5 for first place, $3 for second and $2 for third, with skins being extra. Players 70 and older get to play from the red tees, players 60-69 hit from the gold, and those under age 60 use the white tees.

On a recent Monday there were 28 players participating. The hunt included the team of Ernie Tom Horrall, Don Campbell, Jim Lindeman and Darrell Guerin, who captured first at 4-under. Two groups tied for second, one consisting of Butch Carson, Travis Turpin, Billy Hughes, Duke Shaker and another consisting of Ezra Evans, Jerry Seeling, Ian Carson and John Roshel.

Other participants were George Amies, John Sedwick, Dan Hileman, Buddy Myers, Jim Cook, Bob Thompson, Davey James and Bob Sanders, Junior Ellinger, Bob Mason, Ross Creasey, Scotty Wittenberg, Dave Cassell, Steve Prevo, Jim Horrall and Mike Higgins.

If your name is George Amies and you have recently shot scores of 63, 64 and 64 at Rea Park, I doubt if the high temperatures have been anything more than a minor nuisance.

Amies, a member of the Terre Haute Golf Association Hall of Fame, has recovered from some extremely serious medical problems, and he is now making up for some time lost on the fairways while he awaited a liver transplant that never materialized.

Amies is a former men’s golf coach at Indiana State University. George had assembled a powerhouse team that was set to make a serious bid for an NCAA title before the university decided to dump the men’s golf program.

Also seemingly unaffected by the heat is Jim Cook, better known for his tennis ability and being the former North Vigo tennis coach. Cook made his first hole-in-one on the third hole on May 24. His previous outstanding feat in golf was a double eagle with a 4-wood on the first hole at the former Fort Harrison Elks back in 1976.

We’ll check out a pair of Hulman Links hunts for our next column.

• • •

Some golf courses have really strange names. For example what golfer in his or her right mind would spend leisure time playing a course named Sarah Shank? That “S” word has been a bugaboo for divot digger through the ages. It’s definitely unmentionable.

The Growling Frog is a course in Victoria, Canada. You can’t blame a poor frog for growling when there are those out there who would think nothing of amputating and cooking his legs.

Perhaps someone with a nickname like “Tex” as in Tex Kruzan would enjoy the following courses: The Cowboy, The Outlaw, Robbers Roost, Badlands and Hangman Valley.

If you are planning on organizing your own circus, you could use a couple of animals from Kissing Camel located in Colorado Springs. You might also require something light on its feet such as the Dancing Rabbit Golf Club located in Philadelphia.



TIP OF THE WEEK: Tim Tennant, a former Terre Haute City champion and  Hulman Links Club champion as well, is also one of the best putters to be found anywhere.

He uses a split grip with the right hand much lower on the club for right-handed players. It will take some practice and experimentation to determine if this method is right for you.

Now, for one of golf’s mysteries. Back in the 1970s, I was in Florida and hadn’t taken my clubs. I was able to borrow a set of clubs. During 18 holes, I knocked more putts into the cup than I had ever holed before. All the while, the putter did not feel good in my hands. The “lie” of the shaft, the weight of the club, the length of the club, never felt good to me. All that which was good about that Bull’s Eye putter was the fact it got the ball into the hole time after time. At the end of the season, the magic was gone and so was the putter.

Final advice: Get a putter that feels good to you unless you find one that feels terrible but insists on sending the ball into the hole consistently.

Keep your head down and your shoestrings tied. We’ll be back.