Date: Thu, 20 Sep 2007 16:28:43 -0400
From: Dave Collard <>
Subject: [RSG-OHIO] RSG-Ohio 2007 Wrapup

The twelfth annual RSG-Ohio began for me on a perfect day in Granville. Mark Koenig flew in early and joined Neal and me for a casual afternoon round. Weather was perfect, course was deserted. We had a great time, with a warmup match of Me and Neal (our best ball) vs Tex. We managed to eke out a victory beer... which capped off a very enjoyable day. Then I went home to print and pack and load the truck and basically get ready.

Friday we returned to Champions after a long hiatus. This is a Robert Trent Jones, Sr. designed layout - very interesting and strategic holes. The tiny tee boxes get pretty beat up - it was designed for less play. This had been a private course until the City of CowLumbus bought it and turned it into the cream of the crop muni that it is today.

I had arranged for Tex and I to play against Mike D. and Rancho Bob. We played Hi-Low (2 points per hole) and I played miserably, but rode my horse Tex to victory. Rancho started out hitting his driver and very wildly. After a bit, he teed off with an iron - pure down the middle. Tex asked him why he hadn't been doing that all day. "Because I'm a Retard!", was the reply... leading to various jokes about his new RR nickname. Another beautiful day - the weather had cooled for the weekend and was perfect for walking/carrying golf. I discovered that Mike D is not great at reading a golf card - a couple times he was looking at the wrong hole and played the wrong club accordingly. Not really his fault, the pictures don't line up with the holes...

In the PM I had the enormous pleasure of playing with Debazon, Rock Pyle, and Dave T. What a great group. I loved playing with these guys. Rock is so funny when he stands on the tee talking to himself, trying to convince himself that he is a good golfer. Debazon I would golf with any day any time. Dave is always interesting to play with... On the 4th, a long par 3 all carry over water, with water left as well, Dave T gets on the tee box, surveys the hole, and candidly inquires "Is there a drop area???" So funny, we laughed all day and repeated this question many times. Then on the 5th he flew the green into the one of the worst lies in a bunker I have ever seen. The bunker is very steeply sloped toward the green. His ball plugged under the lip at the very top of the bunker. He actually had to play it away from the green and then pitch on. I have a video.

When we finished, it got cold, dark, and windy. It even looked a little bit like rain, but I was on my game this weekend. Nary a drop. The other groups finished in the near-dark, some combining into gangsomes and having lots of fun putting with 8 balls on the green.

Then on to Hoggy's in Gahanna. Where do they find these waitresses? We always have the most competent wait staff in the history of the universe. Amber and Ashley took such great and prompt care of us, I was amazed. When the brought the food, the Californians (Bob and Brenda) could not believe how big the chickens were, and how much meat there was. I guess California chickens are wimpy. Anyhoo, if you go to a place called Hoggy's, you've got to expect to get a lot of food. We had a good time recanting tales of the day and drinking beer and having fun, but headed home rather early to prepare for the events of tomorrow - The Main Event™ and Match Play Madness™.

The day dawned very cold. The first few holes were cold indeed, and some never got warmed up. That, plus the immense pressure of hoping to get your name on the CoffeeMaker Trophy led to high scores. I personally played rather well, but had a few doubles which kept me out of the running. I played with Dug The Energizer Bunny, Mark Whose Soul Belongs On The Golf Course, and Ron One Hundred Thirty MPH Swing Speed. It was so much fun. The 7th hole at this course (Chapel Hill in Mount Vernon) is a major killer. Many stories were told that night about this hole. Dug had problems with the lake on the left of the green and
chipping to the evil green. He finally got to within a couple feet of the hole in 7 shots. Then putted. And putted. And putted in for a 10. "Whoopsie", he declared as he walked off the green. Ron was in the fairway bunker near the top and failed to get out of the bunker. He picked up the rake but Dug warned him he couldn't do that so saved him a couple shots. On the 14th hole, a long drive hole, none of us managed to hit the fairway. So I just wrote on the card "We Suck" and left it by the tee box. It turned out that Dug was in the fairway (you can't see it all from the tee box), so we/he didn't suck quite so bad.

The Champion of RSG-Ohio 2007 and winner of the CoffeeMaker trophy is Super Dave Osborne, now a two-time champion. He had 4 birdies during his round... plus a nine. However, it was enough to get the win.

The Premier Golfer of RSG-Ohio 2007 (low gross) and winner of the Quaich is Mark "Tex" Koenig, who played well enough for a victory in spite of the cold temperatures and a very injured back.

Congratulations, Champions!!!

After lunch and awards and we headed out for my favorite part of the weekend - Match Play Madness™, of course! My opponent was Bill-O and we started off pretty even, halving most holes. I commented that so far in our group nothing MPM™ specific had happened yet. Immediately, Bill-O graciously proceeded to hit his ball into an impossible lie in the bushes and had to hack his way out. Then the next hole he hit it where he had to stand on the cart path. Then I hit it in the bunker next to a rake. However, I was able to see that the rake was on a slope so there was just enough room under the rake for the leading edge of my wide-open sand wedge to hit the ball before the rest of the club hit the rake. Success! I got it on the green. I did lose that hole, but prevailed in my match.

My son, Jacob, had played in the tournament round, and was also joining us for Match Play Madness™. He was playing against Debazon, and I thought they would be very evenly matched. Super Dave, who loves to busy himself keeping track of matches and riding around in his cart reported that he asked the status of the match and Jacob had replied "One Up". However, they came to the last hole all square. Deb unfortunately sent her ball for a swim, and Jacob won his match. He had a big grin... but it was going to get bigger!

The matches for the second year straight ended up all square, so we had a playoff - one from each team goes to an approach distance (with caddies). If they tie, the caddies play. If the caddies tie, we just halve the matches. Anyhoo, this year Jacob and Deb were to play, with Tex and me as caddies. Deb hit her approach into the water, and I asked Jacob what club he usually hit from this distance. 5-iron. How have you hit your 5-iron today? Ok, but I hit my 4-iron better. I handed him his 4-iron and he hit a great shot straight at the flag but over the green. Since it was for the matches, and the water is so close, Deb made him finish the hole, which he did to loud cheers and with a huge smile. He was very happy and I was about ready to pop. This Big Kid is really the Dad.

At the restaurant that night, many stories were told - there is always a prize for the best story. I think we had 13 of them... but once again the Master took the prize - John Pflum. I don't remember the story, and I don't even think it was about golf - but he could tell a story about a Kleenex falling on the floor and still win. Oh - it did involve something about Dug's "wee, beady, eyes".

On Sunday we played a fantastic course called Clover Valley. It was in such great shape - the greens especially. And these are evil tricksy greens as well. I played with John Pflum in an attempt to roust those Pesky Canadians back North, and we took a 3-up lead at the turn. My wedge was working - this included two chip-ins in a row. One for birdie on the #1 handicap hole. But on the back 9 we faltered. On the par-5 16th I didn't quite clear the water - well, I did, but it bounced back in. I got extremely muddy in a vain attempt to extricate my ball. You've got to see the awesome picture Pflum took as I did it. I did get it out of the water, but not out of the hazard. Then I proceeded to clean the muck off my club in the water and sand - oops "I can't do that!" I said, as I picked up my ball. So they peskily had eaten away at the lead and we ended all square. Whew - at least we didn't have to wear the goofy Moose-Antlers they brought (part of the bet).

The remaining groups trickled in, while we had a few beers and snacks.... and one more RSG-Ohio drew to a close. I lingered in the parking lot until the last of my great good golfing friends left... and headed home.

Hope to see you all next year!!!!

-- David "Thor" Collard